AS A GIANT grandmother prepares to stalk the streets of Limerick next month, a 50-foot scarf is being knit by the public in her honour.
Ahead of the arrival of the Royal de Luxe street theatre company, who will parade through the city from September 5 to 7, the Limerick Craft Hub has opened its doors to the public, and is inviting people to come and knit a row in Grandma’s scarf.
The first stitch was cast on Friday last by the textile craft makers, and the wool and needles are at the ready for people of all abilities to knit throughout the week.
Iseult Byrne, project director for Royal de Luxe’s visit to Limerick, said it is “amazing” what is happening in the run-up to the inaugural visit by the French theatre company for City of Culture. “A cake shop wants to bake a giant cake for granny, a jeweller wants to make a giant ring, and the craft hub are knitting a scarf - there are amazing things coming in. There is an amazing engagement, very local and unrequested. The same thing happened in Liverpool and it is brilliant,” she said.
Claire Jordan, the project manager of the craft hub on 9 Lower Cecil Street, said the centre - which will celebrate its launch this Thursday - was made possible following a grant of €90,000 from the City of Culture board. It is currently selling jewellery, artisan chocolates and foodstuffs, pottery, paintings, knitwear, and handmade children’s toys made by local artists, some of whom are graduates are Limerick School of Art & Design. In addition, they will be running classes for children and adults in many areas such as ceramics, felt-making, silver-smithing and silk painting.
“We wanted to create a destination for craft in Limerick,” explained Ms Jordan, from Herbertstown, “for civic, cultural, educational and enterprise development. We want to raise the level of craft availability in Limerick. We have been getting lots of enquiries from people who want to sell their work.”
“It’s a very strong part of culture in Limerick that didn’t have a face or a voice. We’ve now developed a business model for a not-for-profit limited company, and hope to be a lasting, legacy project under City of Culture,” she told the Leader.
All are welcome to join in the knitting session from 10am to 5.30pm, Monday to Saturday, and wool and knitting needles will be provided. People can also knit at home and all the work will be stitched together in the coming weeks.