Knitters Considered Security Risk

Check this story out. It might seem like just another bizarre human interest story, but I see it as proof positive that VANOC (the organizers of the Vancouver Olympics) will stop at nothing to have their little corporate wankfest happen with no public dissent. This event is SO not about the athletes.

I would love to see the entire route of the torch relay lined with people proudly wearing authentic Cowichan sweaters. Or perhaps some yarn bombing is in order.

For more on the story check out this link from the Times Colonist.


  1. Anonymous6:55 AM

    What a joke! What a joke! What a joke! What a joke! What a joke!

    The Olympics are, as you say, a total corporate wank-fest. Was there a vote to hold the Games? No! Did the Provincial government ask if hundreds of millions, if not billions of tax dollars, should be spent on the Games during the worst recession of the past 80 years? No! And now Cowichan knitters are going to be harrased because the corporate-government monster is afraid. Everybody put on your Cowichan sweater, toque (sp?), mits or what-have-you and show solidarity for a band of First Nations People that just wants to protect its cultural identity. Thanks for spreading the word about this Heather. Jean-Pierre

  2. Ditto,Jean-Pierre and you too Heather.The Cowichan hold the true copyright to these sweaters...all one has to do is look at photos from the past.

  3. Hi Heather. I just pulled myself away from reading the many comments following the Cowichan Knitters article you linked to (some diverse opinions). As a knitter with some knowledge of traditional sweater patterns, do you think the Olympic sweaters were influenced by Cowichan patterns (noting that Cowichan patterns were originally influenced by patterns brough by Scottish immigrants who taught the Cowichan people to knit)? I wasn't sure if the Olympic sweaters were going for a kind of vintage winter sports look, or if they actually wanted a Cowichan sweater look without paying Cowichan knitters.

  4. In answer to Jacquie's question, I think that the sweater design chosen by the Bay has more in common with the Mary Maxim style curling sweater popular in the 60's (and au courant with the vintage fashion crowd.) You are right that the Cowichan sweater designs are influenced by Scottish Fair Isle patterns but I believe the Cowichan knitters adapteded many existing Coast Salish weaving as well. In any case their sweaters are uniquely identifiable as "Cowichan". I think that since a Cowichan sweater incorporating the Olympic rings was commissioned by Vanoc and used to promote the successful Olympic bid a sense of expectation was created that the team sweaters would be similar. Really, it's too bad that an opportunity to showcase such a distinctive garment and support a First Nations industry was squandered.

  5. Thanks, Heather. That was a good clarification. By the way, I heard that Cowichan knitters are pleased with the increased sales/commissions they've received since the publicity around the Olympic sweater controvercy, so maybe there has been some benefit to the them after all.


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