Walk 2012 and KNITTERS

For Mark’s Christmas present last year I designed and made a hat entitled Harefields. It was my honest intention to get the pattern for that design up and online for Mayday 2011, but other things took precedence and it never happened.

However, recent events in our house will change all that, because thanks to Mark the design is now almost as famous as the amazing walk from Weymouth to London which he has been organising for the past two years to coincide with the 2012 Olympic Games. The walk runs from Weymouth (where Mark is from, and where the Olympic Sailing events take place) to the Olympics Stadium in London. It’s about 200 miles long, and we have walked most of it together, though Mark has walked all of it several times, and I cannot wait to be completing this giant walking challenge as my own Olympic feat this Summer.

To return, however, to the hat.

Mark was filmed by the BBC talking about Walk 2012 a couple of weeks ago for a news item, and in a humbling demonstration of unselfish loyalty, used the opportunity to showcase Harefields to the watchers of BBC Spotlight and BBC Southwest. He subversively ensured that FELIXDESIGN was in shot throughout filming, and even trying to get the producer to feature a closeup of his accompanying Walk 2012 socks (also made and designed by me). The BBC producer for the news feature declined to show the socks in the feature, but Andrew Knowles – who is the BT Olypmics Storyteller for Weymouth – has written a great piece on Walk 2012 including a PHOTO OF THE SOCKS, a fact which pleased me no end. Thank you Mark; thank you Andrew!

You can see one version of the news item about Walk 2012 here (though I’m not sure how long that link will work for) and several folks who know both me and Mark on Twitter immediately identified the hat in question as Harefields and commented on its presence in the news piece; there was even a Ravlink at one point. I was reminded of a thread I found in Ravelry where knitters were discussing the various hats worn by Simon King in his Shetland Diaries and on Springwatch, (yes, knitters are online, discussing those hats). This is not to say my own design has attained the heady perfection of King’s fairisle creations, but rather that the ingenuity of the knitting community and our ability to source and identify patterns and designs from the TV is undeniably inspiring. Remember Cold Snap by Kate, inspired by a glimpse of knitwear on a Morrisons advertisement? And the recent spate of sweater patterns based on the one worn by Sarah Lund in The Killing? Clearly the producer at The BBC does not understand the lure of KNITWEAR ON THE BOX, nor the Internet savvy of KNITTERS!

Surely one of the best things about going on the TV is the bonus of added publicity and web-traffic to the site you have carefully created? There was indeed a spike in traffic to Walk 2012.co.uk after Mark’s appearance on BBC News, but this burst of media-generated interest only just beat the traffic generated by knitters which poured onto his site during WOVEMBER, when Kate linked to the socks in her post about the Blacker Designs Corriedale with which they are knitted, and when Mark shared his own thoughts on Wool and Walking in this post!

This leads me to conclude that knitters can generate at least as much online interest in things as the fabled BBC. Therefore, in an attempt to reciprocate Mark’s efforts at publicising my knitting on the BBC, I am appealing to all the amazing knitters I know, shamelessly promoting Mark’s amazing Walk 2012 project and attempting to present Walk 2012 to you in an appealing, knitterly context!

To this end I shall be setting my addi-turbos on TURBO CHARGE and attempting to bust out the Harefields pattern before Valentine’s Day. The plan is to get the pattern up and onto the Walk 2012 site in time for anyone who wants a Harefields hat to wear on The Walk to have one knitted up in very good time.

Afterall, as all knitters know, there is no point in going on a 200-mile long hike if you don’t have a decent hat for the journey.

I am curious to see whether:

1. I can complete my challenge in time
2. Knitters can beat The BBC in terms of generating HITS to the Walk 2012 site
3. Anyone other than me will knit the hat and wear it on the walk

The pattern will be FREE when it comes out, but you will have to subscribe to http://www.walk2012.co.uk/blog to find out when the design is ready as I will make no further announcements about it here!

4 Responses to Walk 2012 and KNITTERS

  1. Knit Nurse says:

    Great idea – please do! I would love to knit a similar hat although to be entirely honest I’m hoping it will be too warm for a hat during Walk2012…!

  2. tomofholland says:

    GO FELIX GO FELIX GO FELIX
    Turbo-knitting with the Addi’s, good thing that wool is a natural flame retardant, or you might set yourself on fire!

  3. Liz A. says:

    Yes, hurrah for shamelessly promoting knitting on the Beeb! Even Richard noticed and commented on the knitwear.

  4. Pingback: The Domestic Soundscape » Archive » FO: Mairet

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