When fiber artist Pamela Palma found herself with an abundance of yarn left over from previous projects, she decided to “yarn-bomb” the column in her art studio. Soon, visitors started stopping by her studio to see her art and the yarn-covered pole. The project and the attention it received inspired her to create a guild for fiber artists called Fantastic Fibers Miami. The group has worked as a team to yarn-bomb spaces ever since.
According to Palma, the best way to begin preparing for yarn-bombing is to ask people to donate their spare yarn––and not to be picky. “We’re especially happy when we get the stuff that you would never really want to wear, like icky acrylic or bright colors,” Palma explained. These types of yarn are excellent for bombing due to their bright hues and eye-catching textures.
Next, knit or crochet long panels of yarn that you can bring to the site; if you’re working with columns or another simple shape, try wrapping the pieces around the architecture. An easy way to attach the top and bottom of the panels together is to safety pin them, though you may need a lot. When Fantastic Fibers yarn-bombed Miami’s Museum of Contemporary Art in January, they used about 10,000 safety pins.
Lastly, Palma’s top tip for beginners is to avoid guerilla-style yarn-bombing––where you cover a site in fiber art without permission. Instead, try to work with a property owner or an art institution to secure a space. “When you know you have support from the community, then you know they’re going to look after it,” Palma noted.