There are squares. Many squares. The colours of the rainbow, different textures, some knitted, some crocheted, some put together into blankets. There are people too, knitting, sewing together, sitting together, having a cup of tea or coffee, with a laptop on the blanket. The air is of urgency and comfort at the same time, there are lots of smiles, smiles that speak of excitement. Friendly faces that invite to be approached. Blankets laid out on sofas and chairs, on tables, a splash of colour in the dark space of Glasgow's Tramway Theatre.
It's coming together. A good few months ago, Garterstitch 100 started out on the phenomenal task to knit just one stitch for every woman missing in our world today. A staggering 100 million women who should be here with us aren't, due to gender inequalities. Women who didn't get born (sex selective abortion), women who didn't get good health care, women who died in childbirth, girls killed just because they were girls, women killed in war and at home.
To celebrate the centenary of International Women's Day on 8th March 2011, the initiative will present a massive blanket to which rather a lot of people contributed. We all knitted or crocheted 6'' squares, and if I remember correctly, a staggering 60,000 squares are needed if just one stitch represents the missing women of this world.
It's all coming together, and coming together is maybe the best description of what's happening. There were so many sit and knit a bit events, where people just got together to knit a square, sharing a space, a time, a task. And while people sat and knitted, they got to know one another. The atrocious fact of the missing women was countered by creativity and togetherness, by creating something with the skill of hands. Lots of hands.
The Tramway is already full of colour and yarn, quite a contrast to its usual steel, metal and brick. The deadline for submitting squares is fast approaching, Tuesday it will be, so if you wish to be part of it, don't tally.
And after Tuesday, the gigantic blanket will be celebrated on International Women's Day with Loop, 100 events for 100 years. Be there.