This summer, Harriman is hosting its first ever Public Art Project. The city called for entries from local artists to decorate rocking chairs. Starting today (June 5), the chairs will be displayed around Historic Downtown Harriman through the summer!
As soon as I heard about this project, I thought "yarn bombing" would be a perfect way to share some fiber arts love with our downtown. The judges agreed and approved my design!
As the chairs go on display today (June 5), I wanted to share some pictures of the Yarn Bomb Rocker's journey - from start to finish!
Assembly, Sanding, & Finishing
The city provided us with with solid cedar chairs. Even before it was assembled, the cedar aroma filled the room! It was wonderful to start the day with!
Since I wasn't painting the chair, I did want to find a way to protect it from the elements and from wet yarn (in case of rain). I chose an interior/exterior varnish and started the routine: thin layer of varnish, let dry, sand, thin layer of varnish, let dry, and so on. It's amazing how different the chair looks with a finish on it! It really brings out the rich tones of the wood!
Knowing the chair would be outdoors and on display until Labor day, I wanted a yarn that would be able to withstand the elements, I did some research on best types of yarn for outdoor use - and synthetics seemed to be the most recommended. I had read about using Phentex Slipper and Craft Yarn, which is made out of a substance called Olefin. Olefin is a material designed specifically for outdoor use - so I thought I would give it a try!
Starting the Motifs
My original design was to make a giant Granny Square for the seat and small Granny Squares along the front.
Then I (re) discovered a book of crochet motifs that had been tucked away somewhere and decided to try some lacy motifs as well!
Arranging the Motifs
Once I had a good stack of motifs, it was time to start assembling!
To make it easier to attach motifs to the chair, first I made an armature using macrame cord. This allowed to me to have more freedom with motif placement.
To attach the main granny square motif, I crocheted long lengths of "chain" and used this as the cord!
Here was the first round of attaching motifs:
- Granny Square on the seat with a row of smaller granny squares across the front.
- Large crochet lace motifs "floating" across the back of the chair
Then I made more Granny Squares to fill out the arms and back of the chair.
Granny Squares are everywhere! I love all the colors and endless combinations!
The Final Result
Come Downtown this Summer!
About 20 rocking chairs are being prepared by local artists. I have seen a few already, and they are all fantastic! I am so honored to be among this group!
The rocking chairs will be displayed at the storefronts of local, downtown businesses beginning June 5, 2023. The city will be asking everyone to vote online for their favorite rocking chair and will post the link on June 05. The winner will be announced at this year’s Hooray for Harriman celebration!
Be sure to come downtown, see all of our rocking chairs created by talented local artists, and vote for your favorite!