Raw Material 6: Stitchlinks

April 30, 2016

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Photo: Rachel Gomme, The Memory of Yarn Performance, R Space Gallery, http://www.rspacelisburn.com, Northern Ireland, 2012)

Knitters learn valuable life skills such as patience, perseverance, and the knowledge that mistakes can be undone (www.stitchlinks.com).

Stitchlinks is an organisation dedicated to promoting the therapeutic benefits of knitting, stitching and crochet. It disseminates research into the health benefits of these crafts in relation to rhythmic movement, texture, and social interaction.

Our mission is to use knitting and other therapeutic creative activities to improve wellbeing generally, but also to complement medical treatments in the self-management of long-term health conditions. We are working closely with academics and clinicians, and as a direct result, therapeutic knitting and therapeutic knitting groups are being formally acknowledged by leading clinicians and academics for their benefits in mainstream healthcare. We have been successfully using knitting therapeutically in the NHS (National Health Service, UK) since 2006.

Our prime focus is on the use of therapeutic knitting as a healthcare tool – unravelling the neuroscience behind its bilateral, rhythmic, automatic movements and the complex combination of physiological, psychological, behavioural, social and creative benefits experienced.

Knitting’s portability plays a key role in making its benefits available when you need it. We have helped people to use it to successfully manage panic, anxiety and pain spasms when out and about as well as problems with sleep and social confidence (www.stitchlinks.com).

1199701-7Photo: Bora Lee, bora201308, Keywords: black, space, time, infinity, knit, line, saatchiart.com

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Photo: Katie Holten, It Started on the C Train, Crocheted Maps, http://www.thesundaytimes.co.uk

Usually I’m on the move, and I started to crochet on the subway making circular shapes that were like a drawing accompanying my journey. I collected a bundle of crochet doodles, all made from a simple chain stitch and connected them together. The bundles of crocheted ‘maps’ can be displayed and assembled in different ways (Katie Holten, It Started on the C Train, Irish Museum of Modern Art).

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Photo: Kathy Prendergast, The Grave Blanket, wooden blanket and marble chips,        www.kerlingallery.com

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Photo: Kathy Prendergast, The Secret Kiss, Kerlin Gallery, Ireland

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Photo: Faith Wilding 1972 Womb Room (Renamed Crocheted Environment in 1995)

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