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Soft Chains

I have to thank Amanda for this find, in a round-about way. She got it all started by spotting a pretty pale blue chain-link scarf at Entre Nous, and that was intriguing enough to send me off to tap the great Google machine like Ponce de León ransacking Florida for a magical water source…

Marley’s Ghost chain link scarf by Alison Gates
• model: Cory Linsmeyer
• photo: Alison Gates

Et voila!

Marley’s Ghost No Clank Chain is the super-appropriate name (look it up) of this knitted chain-link scarf designed by Alison Gates.

Make your own chain with felted or stretchy links, long and loopy or strictly structured, whatever… Alison has generously made her pattern available to all — free — over at Knitty.com!

But wait, there’s more to this story than simply knitting up soft chains to wrap a handsome man (or yourself) in whimsical style…

Alison tells me that Marley’s Ghost is currently appearing at the Museum of Contemporary Craft in Portland, Oregon, as part of an exhibit there called Touching Warms the Art. Also in the show is a “little sister” piece called Return to Tiffany’s — “basically a small-gauge bracelet version of the original chain, with a little crochet charm on it,” says the designer.

Many of the concepts inherent in pieces of art jewelry remain vague or abstract until the viewer becomes the wearer. But this transmission, and subsequent transformation, is typically not possible in a museum setting, where it’s sometimes even noted that “touching harms the art.” Juried by Rebecca Scheer, Rachelle Thiewes and Namita Gupta Wiggers, the exhibition navigates new territory regarding how craft –particularly art jewelry – can be engaged in a museum setting.

When the exhibit ends, the museum will own Marley’s Ghost No Clank Chain as a part of its permanent teaching collection.

Technorati Tags: crafts, knitting, chains, Alison Gates

7 comments… add one
  • Elena 2008/02/05, 12:06 pm

    Love this scarf, also jealous I didn’t invented it! But there is a free pattern and I can make one to give as a cool gift.

    Thank you for sharing, Jen.

    Elena( LenkArt and CrazyPillow also)

  • domestika 2008/02/03, 4:28 pm

    Just this morning, at Sunday brunch, I was telling my mother & teenaged niece about the chain link scarves. A bit hard to explain how cool this is without having the picture to show, but I scribbled a sketch on a paper napkin… hopefully one of them picked up the hint! ;)

  • HowToMe 2008/01/31, 9:52 pm

    I wonder how hard it would be to add a ball to the end of that ;-)

  • HowToMe 2008/01/31, 9:51 pm

    Ha! That is absolutely hilarious! I am going to be looking into that for a few guys who’s birthdays are coming up… better yet – VALENTINES !!! LOL! :-D

  • Linda 2008/01/31, 6:27 pm

    That’s an awesome scarf! Maybe I should get it for my boyfriend as a Valentine’s Day present. LOL.

  • Amanda Nicole 2008/01/29, 4:35 pm

    Thanks for the nod, Jen! I know, I simply love these scarves. That’s so cool they’ll be in an exhibit, I wish I could see it.

  • Anne Maybus 2008/01/29, 4:03 pm

    How clever is that? How to stay warm and still be cool at the same time. No ruining the image with that scarf!

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