Knitted Billboard Vinyl Drapes for SFMOMA Event


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Al Gore, Harrison Ford, Michael Bloomberg, Nancy Pelosi, CA Governor Jerry Brown, San Francisco Mayor London Breed and other luminaries convened at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art on September 12, 2018 to launch the 2018 Global Climate Action Summit.

We partnered with Raiola Co. Event Design to create a sustainable 10 x 40 foot pipe and drape screen for the ticket counter.

Our task was to create a focal point using a sustainable material in line with the event’s sustainable ethos, which excluded new plastic serve ware, serving meat, and more. After researching recycled yarn and textiles, the idea sparked to repurpose used local billboards from California.

We hand cut over two dozen 6- x 12-foot billboards into 1.5″ strips using the technique we developed for cutting fabric into one long, knot-free strip. That’s over half a mile of strips!

Constructed as four 10- x 10-foot panels on 1.5-inch PVC pipe “knitting needles”, we keep them in the studio to reuse for jumbo knitting projects.

This process is one we previously developed to make 350 feet of hand knitted flags for Old Navy’s flagship stores.

The entire project took over 60 hours to prototype, design, source, knit, install, break down, and package for reuse.

Knitting details for nerds:

  • The drape is stockinette, knitted flat.
  • To hide the upper pipe, we increased every stitch on the last round.
  • In order to use the last row of stitches as loops for hanging the drape, instead of binding off we put them on hold by threading the live stitches with a strip of vinyl tied to the first and last stitch.
  • Instead of mattress stitching panels together as one, we left them as four separate panels for ease of storage and zip tied them together when hung.
  • Each panel packed up into a 2- x 2- x 2.5-foot bundle weighing about 30 pounds.

For more examples of our work, see our portfolio.

To get in touch about your project, contact us.

Follow our exploits on Instagram @knitsforlife.

Knitted Billboard Vinyl Drape by Knits for Life

Knitted Billboard Vinyl Drape by Knits for Life

Knitted Billboard Vinyl Drape by Knits for Life

Knitted Billboard Vinyl Drape by Knits for Life

Knitted Billboard Vinyl Drape by Knits for Life

Knitted Billboard Vinyl Drape by Knits for Life

Knitted Billboard Vinyl Drape by Knits for Life

Knitted Billboard Vinyl Drape by Knits for Life
Over 24 billboards were repurposed for the 400-square-foot knitted drape.

Knitted Billboard Vinyl Drape by Knits for Life

Knitted Billboard Vinyl Drape by Knits for Life
A selection of billboards knitted into the drapes.
Knitted Billboard Vinyl Drape by Knits for Life
Find our photo tutorial for how to cut fabric into one long strip here: https://knitsforlife.com/2015/06/17/fabricyarntutorial/
Knitted Billboard Vinyl Drape by Knits for Life
Rather than manipulating jumbo pointed knitting needles, we hand manipulate the stitches on hollow pipes.
Knitted Billboard Vinyl Drape by Knits for Life
The entire 10- x 40-foot drape took about 40 hours to knit, plus more to cut, prototype, and source. Thats 20 movies, or season 2 of Westworld plus explainer videos and a few Muppet Movies 😉
Knitted Billboard Vinyl Drape by Knits for Life
Event photos by @emilymurase, Instagram.

xxxo,

Lorna & Jill @knitsforlife