Sugar cane yarn bombing call helps bring community together in Bundanoon


Candy canes have long been associated with Christmas and this year the village of Bundanoon in the Southern Highlands features the red and white stripes across the town.

One of Ms. Ayres’ favorite artistic attacks, Test Flight. was rue Vieille-du-Temple in Paris.(Provided: Instagram @kitty_knitter)
Knitting on a pole
Mrs. Ayres knitted a series of rainbow poles in Darlinghurst.(Provided: Instagram @kitty_knitter)

The pop-up son bombing project, started by Alison Ayres aka @Kitty_Knitter on Instagram, has transformed the tiny village, and everyone from butcher to baker is finding it adorable.

Known for her stripes and cheerful colors, Ms Ayers, who became a resident of Bundanoon three years ago, has been a wool bomber for a decade.

“I have been bombing construction sites for ten years in various forms and in various countries, [including] a lot of work in Europe, ”she said.

“My bombing thread is all about happiness, smiles, stripes, checks and fun stuff.

“I thought I could convert the stripes into a Christmas theme and it turned into a candy cane,” she said.

Candy Cane Lane in Bundanoon

After Ms. Ayres placed a note on the community bulletin board and a Facebook post, the community responded.

“The women poured out. It was so exciting,” she said.

Surprisingly, 21 women from the Highland region, including Bundanoon, Burrawang and Exeter, Tallong, Wingello and even Penrose, participated.

“A lot of the pickups have been done with masks on so now we have no more masks, it’s quite fabulous to meet these women on the street for the first time,” Ms. Ayres said.

Bundanoon Main Street
Although the post panel designs and wool have been distributed to avid knitters, each of the post panels is unique, allowing for customization. (ABC Illawarra: Sarah Moss)

“A lot of people think you’re sitting there and knitting it on the pole.

“You would be amazed at how many people think so.

“But in reality, you make a flat panel and put it around the post.”

Ms. Ayres uses pegs to hold the panel to the tree.

“You need a huge darning needle and I’m doing a simple running stitch because of course it has to come off,” she said.

The knitting being sewn to the pole
Learning to knit alternating rows of red and white stripes is an art that takes patience, dedication, and a lot of enthusiasm. (ABC Illawarra: Sarah Moss)

Although the bombardment of threads is technically illegal, Ms Ayers suspects the job is left alone because her art is creating and sharing happiness.

“Nobody bothers me,” she said.

However, an important part of the process is removing them before they get stinky.

“With all the parts that I have made in the world, I take them off and if possible reuse them,” Ms. Ayres said.

“The yarn is reused, or sometimes the pieces are sewn together to form blankets for the dog’s house.”

Happy to help

Athalie Dartnell in Bundanoon
Athalie Dartnell accepted the challenge of knitting striped items of cane that were then wrapped around the village poles. (ABC Illawarra: Sarah Moss)

Although her knitting skills are “pretty basic”, Athalie Dartnell is one of the women who answered the social call, participating in Bundanoon’s Candy Cane Lane project.

“It’s a happy thing to do, especially after COVID-19.

I just wanted to be a part of it, ”she said.

“The little bit that I found difficult was wearing the white or red wool on the side, and it took me a pole, out of the three I made, before I had any idea how to put it. do it right, ”she said.

Looking back down the main street, Ms. Dartnell reflects on the results of the project and what she thinks of her involvement.

“I feel really happy. It makes me happy. It’s a uniform look and it makes Bundanoon more of a community,” she said.

Alison Ayres admires her handiwork of wire bombing in Bundanoon.
Ms. Ayres first spent a day traveling the city measuring the street posts and making note of their location.(ABC Illawarra: Sarah Moss)

Bundanoon Main Street is sweet but not tacky

Anthony Smith, a butcher on the main street in Bundanoon, knows that a lot of effort has gone into the project.

“I think there are a lot of people working behind the scenes to generate the Christmas mood for tourists and locals,” he said.

He is happy the city is opening for Christmas, but added that during the COVID-19 lockdown, residents have taken very good care of themselves.

“It’s always good this time of year,” Smith said.

“Lots of people come from all over, Canberra, Melbourne, Sydney, and why don’t you come here? “

“Bundanoon is a beautiful city.”

Anthony Smith in front of his butcher's shop in Bundanoon
Anthony Smith believes the barley sugar artwork exemplifies residents’ enthusiasm for Christmas. (ABC Illawarra: Sarah Moss)

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