Words and project by Adriana Cobo, Architecture & Spatial Design PhD Student at CSM

With Making in Camden and Ageing Better Somers Town and Saint Pancras

The Granny Square Project draws its name from this classic crotchet motif which often constitutes the basic piece for larger crocheted assemblages such as blankets, tablecloths, etc. For this Make Camden Project, by the Public Collaboration Lab, Granny Square will focus on the making of a crochet garment tailored to one of the benches on Granary Square.

This will be crocheted using granny squares assembling depictions of significant images in and around the area, specially the iconic birds and devils depicted on the finials commissioned in 1931 by Father Basil Jellicoe, for the washing posts and airing lines of Saint Michael’s Flats. Plarn, or ‘Plastic Bag Yarn’ will be used as the main material. For this intervention, using plarn is a simple way of devising water-resistant fabrics, a key issue when working on Granary Square.

It’s use allows the involvement of local businesses for resourcing and recycling grocery bags, to produce 15 m2 of crocheted plarn, the amount necessary to ‘dress’ one bench.

The project will be a collaboration between UAL fashion, industrial design and architecture students and staff, and community members, mainly elderly women from Ageing Better Somers Town and Saint Pancras. Participants will be engaged through crotchet training sessions to practice and/or learn to make plarn and develop skills and ideas to move on to make the piece through selected motifs.

The programme includes a fitting session the for the garment to be assembled on the square, and a final on-site celebration for participants to tell the stories of the knitted garment to invited publics. The project is part of my PhD Research on Spatial Practices of Public Space.

We are seeking:
  • Documentary Film Maker:

The documentation of the Granny Square Project will focus on: 1. Participant stories around motives and patterns depicted on a large-scale crotchet piece we are making together, and 2. The work process leading towards a final public event.

This requires the involvement of a video maker for three to four working sessions of approximately two hours each. Both need to be recorded during workshop sessions, in an un-intrusively manner, taking advantage of the making spaces setting, where conversation and rest are encouraged. The ‘final’ video documentation will ideally produce a short video (between 1 and 3 minutes),as well as a series of snap shots to be used in social media.

  • Journalist:

Reporting on the Granary Square Project will focus on: 1. Participant stories around the motives and patterns depicted on a large-scale crotchet piece we are making together, and 2. The overall description of the project, its motivations and the process of making it happen. It requires the involvement of a MA journalism student during three to four working sessions of approximately two hours each. The journalist’ records will be used to report on the project in diverse media platforms during the week.

  • Creatives on Knitting/Crocheting Large Scale Pieces:

Post Graduate students across UAL, with specific interests on community engagement through crocheting and knitting, are invited to join the Granny Square Project. We will be making hundreds (1.600 to be precise…) of Granny Squares with Plarn (plastic Yarn), to assemble a cover for one of the benches on Granary Square, King’s Cross.   Place/Times TBC

Please contact Adriana Cobo to express/discuss interest in any of the above, by Thursday 14th of June.

Email: acobocorey@gmail.com  Mobile: 07949847079