University of Cambridge Museums

Projects, events and news from the University of Cambridge Museums

You can’t pull the Wool over our Eyes!

Unless we’re talking balaclavas…knitted balaclavas, miniature knitted balaclavas on three miniature knitted explorers from the Heroic Age of Scott and Shackleton. Oh and six huskies, a pony, two sledges and lots of skis and ski poles.

Following some freelance work with museums in the South West I had been inspired by their museum knitting group and had secretly wanted a set of explorers for the Polar Museum. The downside was that I cannot knit so the hunt was on!

I spread the word around and eventually made contact with the very talented, and far too modest, Eileen. No, she had never knitted a set of polar explorers before but she did manage to find a pattern for a knitted huskie. Adapting patterns from a Nativity scene and the Olympics, our very own polar scene came to life. And to top it all, the set was delivered during National Knitting Week!

Initially we had planned to use them as a storytelling aid in our Little Explorers activity sessions for the under 5s. However, when we saw them we started thinking much, much wider… animation anyone?

The first official outing will be at Little Explorers on 11 November when they will be used by the fabulous storyteller Marion Leeper, to help tell the story of Shackleton. For more information please visit the Polar Museum website.

Naomi Chapman, Education & Outreach, The Polar Museum

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