Improvised knitting machines

During my residency at Aspex, I explored the idea of using found objects to make improvised knitting machines. The junk pile did not disappoint: a row of coat hangers, mounted on the wall, provided a narrow-width 'machine'. The depth of the hooks made it difficult to knit on this without weights, and so I used some random objects (an egg cup, 2 pairs of broken sunglasses, a Power Ranger and some beads).

On my way into the gallery one day, I impulsively popped into a car boot sale and picked up an old blouse. I chopped it into one continuous strip, with some features still recognisable, and knitted it on the hangers. I like to think that the hangers have 'ganged up' on a garment in the wardrobe, and reformed it to their own taste. I like imposing a knitted structure onto a woven garment, too; a victory for knitting in an imaginary war of textile structures.

Elsewhere in the junk pile I found a coat hook with a row of pegs, and knitted on it with obsolete cables. Later, I took my improvised knitting machine experiments outdoors and knitted with cables on the railings outside the Royal Garrison Church. 


  • Created in August 2011 for the Working Title exhibition at Aspex in Portsmouth

  • No longer in existence; hi-res images available