World Record Knitting attempt helping community through self-isolation
Despite the recent postponement of the Devon County Show, the show must go on when it comes to achieving the world record for the Longest Knitted Bunting’ says organiser, Deborah Custance Baker.
In a world that seems entirely dominated by bad news, we remain extremely hopeful that we will be in a position by May 16th, the deadline date set by Guinness World Records, to go forth and smash the current record with a string of knitted bunting that is more than 8km in length.’
Deborah’s message to the community at this stage of the game, therefore, is ‘Keep Knitting’.
Deborah, who is based in Silverton Exeter, now has a house and horse boxes bursting at the seams with knitted triangles, of which there are many thousands – and at least the amount required for beating the current world record even at this early stage.
‘We are utterly overwhelmed by the enthusiasm of our knitters who have literally come from all over the world. We set up a Facebook Group, Longest Knitted Bunting and have participants posting daily about their achievements. We have knitters in Australia and in New Zealand. We’ve a lady who was knitting on a cruise in the Caribbean. We have children knitting, including an 11-year-old from Nebraska, and we even have a lady who suffers from severe arthritis and hasn’t knitted for years who dusted down her needles and has contributed over 200 flags. We’re also delighted at how many male knitters have cast on, too. It’s been incredible to see their confidence building as they experiment with using yarn combinations and embroidery.’
What is truly amazing is the timing of this initiative. Knitting seems to be really helping many people who are self-isolating. We know from studies that knitting has several therapeutic benefits including helping to relieve stress and anxiety. We’ve had lots of comments on our Facebook page on the subject. One of our male knitters said: 'From beginner to 10 knitted flags, now completed. Getting adventurous with not one, not two, but THREE coloured wools. Self-isolating has suddenly become tolerable.'
‘The stringing together of the triangles is well underway, and it is going to look amazing’ says Deborah. ‘We were hoping to bring together all those who have participated in the Record at Exeter Cathedral to help with the threading. However, we now recognise this almost certainly won’t be possible within our time frame. So currently it’s just me, affixing 32,000 flags onto 8kms of tape, each at the required 2” apart. It’s extremely fortunate that time is something I have lots of at the moment as well as a (reasonably) tolerant husband.’
The Knitted Bunting, as planned will be strung around the interior of the Crafts & Gardens Marquee at the Devon County Show which is now scheduled to take place on the 28, 29 and 30 August at Westpoint in Exeter. Post the show, the bunting will be offered to various local, worthy causes and will also help raise funds for farming charity The Addington Fund, who will be auctioning it off at the Show in 3 metres lengths.
To take part in the Longest Knitted Bunting Initiative, go to www.devoncountyshow.co.uk/bunting and join the Facebook Group, Longest Knitted Bunting. Completed flags must be delivered by May 8th.