People who follow Woolly's blog will find mentions of the community in northern Italy she and her family moved to several years ago. Now that community is threatened by the actions of one local person, and its residents, many of them artists, face substantial legal fees in their battle to remain and preserve the artworks around the site.
So, what do you do as a designer when faced with that sort of fundraising challenge? You put together a collection, and donate the proceeds to the fund.
And a fine collection it is (as copy-editor, I had a sneak preview, obviously!). I've only knitted two of these, Encircle:
(Silvia rocks this design above - this is my more staid and much more fluffy version below)
and Pavone (Italian for peacock)
(Sara wearing a less drapy version than the one I test-knitted, modelled by Anya against the background of the building we work in)
I can attest to the excellence of both. Looking forward to choosing the next one...
You can buy the collection through Ravelry (recommended if you're a member - then it's in your library and you can print out bits and bobs as you need them); if you're not a Ravelry member, you can also get it via Woolly's website.
I'm going to finish with the words of the community in their Statement. And when you've read it, if you want to know more and offer support, there's a Facebook page; and there's a petition at Change.org, and the Twitter hashtag in English is #savemutonia.
The Mutoid Waste Company arrived in Santarcangelo di Romagna, Italy in 1990 to perform in that year's "Festival Dei Teatri", a renowned annual festival held in the town. From that time on Santarcangelo became a base for the group and it became their home. Their art, their way of life and they themselves became an accepted part of life in Santarcangelo. Over the last 23 years they have increasingly collaborated on projects with local institutions such as schools, and their ties with the local community have strengthened. In recent years some of the Mutoids have chosen the Yard as a safe place to raise their own children.
The Yard is unique: a place that follows the rules whilst living completely outside them, a place that advocates an alternative outlook on life, a place that allows people to discover new things - and it's wonderful that such a place is considered a true part of Santarcangelo and that the locals readily accept the Yard as part of their community.
Unfortunately the Yard currently finds itself under a very real and serious threat of eviction - a reality which would not only destroy this unique community but also disperse its inhabitants and their artwork.
Despite these many years of mutually respectful cohabitation there is one voice that has continually spoken against the Mutoids presence; a single objector who now seriously threatens this culturally important phenomenon.
Mutonia is not a campsite (even though its inhabitants live in caravans, buses, trucks and temporary constructions that look more like works of art than houses); it's not a standard travellers site (although many of its inhabitants have a semi-nomadic lifestyle); and the group have never illegally occupied the land.
In recent years Santarcangelo's local council has been searching for a solution to the situation, seeking help from other government bodies, with the ultimate aim of declaring the Mutoid Yard as a Site of Cultural Interest.
Photos in this post copyright (c) Woolly Wormhead (1, 2, 4), (c) Franklin Habit (3) (c) Liz Marley (5).