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Category — Yarn bomb

Stop Fooling with Nuclear Weapons

How rock and roll do you want me to be?

I am a bit of a Libran at heart, and so my thinking world is often very grey in that I can see all sides, value lots of different ways of seeing issues. On Monday, I travelled to the Stop Fooling with Nuclear Weapons Protest at Aldermaston, and had one giant dose of black and white dished up to me. I don’t really know where to begin.

O.K, so to set the scene…there were lots of different gates and a very big wire fence surrounding the bomb factory – and many, many fab rainbow people gathered around each of the different gates. Knowing I couldn’t get to visit all of them, I concentrated on two – the Women’s gate and the Faith Gate. First job – hang up a length of our pink peace scarf – oh, for longer legs…

There were some very moving things tied up there, including these beautiful origami peace cranes that had been painstakingly arranged despite fingers being so numb they were nearly dropping off.

…and fabulously colourful stitched banners…I am determined to make my own banner of loveliness – anyone up for helping me?

Hey, check out these little crocheted birds that had cheekily yarn bombed their way into one quiet corner….

O.K.That’s enough of the stitchy angle, lets get down to business. I have to tell you that I met some AMAZING people that day – people of hope, people of faith, people of determination, smiley people, articulate smart people and just plain awesomely wild people!!

This is me talking knitting to one of the oldest women in the U.K. Her name is Hetty, and at 107 she was totally up for protesting nuclear insanity. Go Hetty! Next to us is the M.P Jeremy Corbyn – he had some totally inspiring things to say too.

Dr Rebecca Johnson was there (one of the awesome people I mentioned earlier) – now she has some feistiness that I wouldn’t mind a little of. Here she is reminding us that what we do locally feeds into political debate globally. Oh yes, people, we can and do make one hell of a difference.

Kate Hudson, CND General Secretary was there and up for modelling a bit of our pink scarf – yay! And there was also possibly the most formidable women I am ever likely or lucky enough to meet. Here she is with Kate – Pat Arrowsmith. She is a peace campaigner of some standing, has had prime ministers quaking at her sustained heckling, is a voracious gay rights advocate and having served 11 prison sentences was force fed when on hunger strike in Gateshead prison as a younger woman. That is some C.V.

There were some gorgeous Somali women who I had fun dancing with when the time for making noise and banging pots and pans came. And oh! I was ablaze with cheekiness about asking people to be photographed with that scarf of pinkiness – I knobbled Natalie Bennett, leader of the Green Party, and several others – some needed to be incognito – they were obviously on more secret missions…sssssh….

Oh yes, this was a day of anti-nuclear frolicking to be sure – and with 19,000 nuclear weapons in the world, someone had to do it. There was a smackeral of glamour too – here I am trying to advise Katharine Hamnett on the ins and outs of a knit and pearl (yes, so she is Queen of the World when it comes to all things textiley, but hey! I was unstoppable by then….)

I need to tell you how exciting it was unrolling those first pieces of pink peace scarf that we have all knitted. Wool Against Weapons is on the map, and on Monday was in people’s hands, draped around shoulders, hung on the fence, and most of all being talked about.

So, I stepped into that whole rush of black and white thinking, and it was good. There is no middle land in this debate – Trident has to go. We cannot afford the £100bn in renewing it, and our dear planet certainly cannot afford the consequences of something so morally reprehensible and vile being fired. There, was that rock and roll enough for you..

As one of the brilliant banners said – “Resistance is to make yourself one safe republic of unconquered spirit” – well, I saw many of those such spirits there, and wow, did it blow me away.

Actually, what really nearly blew me away was being handed a pink megaphone in one mad moment, in front of the crowd at the Women’s gate – and fired up on a few too many virtual coffees jumping up and going for it….ooops! This is Jaine Rose (again), unzipped and crazy pink, signing off

April 3, 2013   No Comments

Alice in Freakyland

No sooner was I back from my beautiful dreamtime on Dartmoor, I was catapulted in the most alarming way into an adventure of a very exciting and strange kind. Curiouser and curiouser. 

Having survived giving umpteen presentations on nuclear war to hoards of teenage Year 9 and 10’s – oh yes, really…. – I packed a little bag and headed off for the campaign launch of Action AWE in Reading. Oh, this was going to be fun……

Action AWE is a grassroots campaign of non-violent actions determined to halt the production of the big, scary weapons of badness at Aldermaston and Burghfield. I got massively inspired by all the people I met there, including the two great speakers Rebecca Johnson and Kate Hudson who gave us a lively evening with their sparky ideas and messages of hope and empowerment. 

Not only that, but we got to wear great t-shirts too, eat biscuits and laugh a lot

Next up in the surreal, you’ve gotta be kidding stakes, was a meeting with Thames Valley Police, to talk through, among other things, the logistics of stringing a 7-mile long pink scarf from one bomb factory to another in the summer of 2014. Now, as everyday conversations go, that was out there. Oh, and do you knit, Inspector?? “Very funny, someone get this mad woman out of my police station…(handcuff her first)”

Ah well, after a packed lunch, on to the said Atomic weapons-making factory, to suss out the potential for some fabulous yarn bombs on their front gates. Grey metal is such an unimaginative colour, don’t you think? It is my absolute duty, I do believe, to jazz it up a little. My mind started clicking with ideas….

It’s a pretty scary, Alice-in-freakyland place really. Electric fences, Mod-plods with mad uniforms, signs saying no photos to be taken (whoops….) – all the ingredients for a splendid day out. Oh, and should there be some nasty nuclear disaster while you are walking around the perimeter fence? No worries, they have that covered too. Clever Burghfield

O.K, I may sound a little sarky here, but it is in-your-face real, and just plain frightening, when you think about what these weapons can do. Each warhead (and there is a potential of 192 in the U.K) can unleash a destructive power 8 times greater than Hiroshima. So now I am less skippy, as I drive the route that our pink scarf will take.

Of course, these guys really meant it when they said ‘no photos’ and I guess an insane pink-haired woman hanging out of a car window with her Sony SLS constitutes a good enough reason for a rather jolly ‘stop and search’ – too much fun. Do knitting needles and pink wool arouse suspicion? I do hope so….

Yup, this has been a million miles from my precious time at Dartmoor. But one more step along my path of pink revolution. I am fearless, I am bold, I am tenacious. I am pink. Kate Adie, eat your heart out….

March 7, 2013   1 Comment

The Mother of all Pink Plans….

Right then. I have been teasing you for long enough – Christmas is nearly upon us, and I can’t get twinkling with festive posts until I have revealed all. Do you remember back in October when I became crazed with the idea of jumping over a 7ft high barbed wire fence??

And then in November I became a bit possessed with pink wool dreams, beside my ocean? 

Well, December has seen me go completely and finally la-la with the dyeing and shaving of my hair…..

But it is all part of my very CUNNING plan people!
Which is this…….

I am going to singlehandedly with lots of willing hands knit and crochet a 7 mile long Peace Scarf that is going to run between the Atomic Nuclear Weapons factories at Aldermaston and Burghfield in Berkshire. It will be one big old woolly protest against the U.K’s ongoing involvement with nuclear weapons and the £80 billion our Government is intending to spend in 2016

Yes, it is completely insane, but I also think its going to be hugely fun and empowering….are you in?? Are you?? So all you do is knit or crochet a piece of the scarf which needs to measure 60cm x 100cm – in any stitch, any kind of wool…as long as it is PINK!! Also, don’t forget to email me and let me know how you are getting on. I have already started- here is my piece, nearly finished

O.K, so I am not the best knitter in the world – but power to the Yarn Bomb revolution is what I say! If you are feeling inspired to join me on my journey, and I would really LOVE you to, then take a look at the Wool Against Weapons website at www.woolagainstweapons.co.uk

And just to make it even more interesting, and because, well, it’s nearly Christmas, I am going to send a little package of my sparkly stitchy witch cards to the first five people that email me a photo of their finished piece of woolly scarf…how does that sound?

So take up your hooks and needles all you stitchy girls and boys out there, because this is an act of guerilla wool-fare – our lovely planet needs you so, so much…..

December 11, 2012   9 Comments

Landing….

I am back from my dear Norfolk ocean and place of quietness…straight in to full on teenagers, Halloween happenings, yarn episodes and all sorts of hit-the-ground running shenanigans…..quite enough to turn my hair grey…or pink (thank you oh wondrous Lily, friend of teenage daughter)

But I am skipping ahead…that was the end of my mad week. No, it started innocently enough on Monday, at three minutes before bedtime (my bedtime that is, my kids are often lawless in the land of nod) – with a ‘mum, I need a Halloween costume IMMEDIATELY and so what I need you to do is wrap me tightly in cling film, and then cover me with yellow duct tape’. Of course you do.

Now, this was turning out to be some horrific 50 Shades of Yellow b-movie, but it ended reasonably well, all things considered, and really quite sculptural (it’s a Pikachu outfit in case you were wondering. I wasn’t, at 10.53pm)


The middle of the week was intense, and soul searching, with dear land and ocean sisters holding me gently (I love you)…including witchery in the woods, talking around a fire, talking over the phone, and even a pumpkin soup picnic.



….a very perfect antidote to all the sugar and adrenaline that was steamrollering our way.

There has been trick or treating, lighting of ancestor candles, and even the excitement of Stroud’s first yarn bomb…woohooo….

and all the while the season turns colour quietly and steadily



A world away from my salt marsh and herons, this is another kind of life-living – a good kind, but crazy kind. It is all part of the soup that makes up my world I guess. The trick is to give in to the flow of it, I’ve decided. Surrender to busyness, but remembering to breathe. Don your best stripy tights, let teenagers organise your hair, love it, and live it.

Until next time, this is Jaine Rose, queen of pink and perky, (and sometimes much weeping) signing off.




November 5, 2012   3 Comments