Botanica Mathematica

a textile taxonomy of mathematical plant forms


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Edinburgh Events Annouced!

EISFCover2014

This morning the Edinburgh International Science Festival launched their programme.

We really pleased to announce that Botanica Mathematica will be part of the Science at the HeART of Things art trail. It will take place from 5th to 20th April in Edinburgh’s Summerhall Art Centre which has been getting lots of media attention for its adventurous programmes of exhibitions and performances.

I’d like to take this opportunity to ask knitter or crocheter who reads this to contribute a Binary Bonsai or a Fibonacci Flower or a Hyperbolic Chanterelle to help put on a really great show. In particular we need more trees to have a good sample size for species classifications. We could hold a workshop (with free yarn from our sponsors, McAree Bros 🙂 ) one Saturday in March if it looks like people are interested. Email madeleineshepherd[at]gmail.com (replacing [at] with @ – of course) if you’d like to come along and we’ll take it from there.

Botanica Mathematica will also be taking part in Botanics Late in the Royal Botanic Gardens Edinburgh on 17 April. For this event we’ll be showcasing the results of our new collaboration with Naomi Nakayama from Institute of Molecular Plant Sciences, University of Edinburgh. Naomi is helping us make new designs based on lichens, mosses, liverworts and other lower plants indigenous to Scotland. We’ll have more to say about these in the near future.

There’s also a Mini Maker Faire on 20 April at Summerhall. We will both be around in one capacity or another. More on this as it gets finalised.

I hope you’ll all be able to contribute to/take part in/visit these and other events during the Festival this April. Please share your thoughts and photographs if you do.

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knitted chanterelles

knitted chanterelles by MadeleineS
knitted chanterelles, a photo by MadeleineS on Flickr.

Whoops! this picture was originally posted without any text – sorry.  I was testing a new uploading app for Flikr and hadn’t realised it had appeared on the blog too.

Anyway these cute little knits are a couple of hyperbolic chanterelle mushrooms that I knitted up using different increase methods.  The knit front and back method is definitely more realistic but the holes from the yarn over technique create interesting patterns of their own.

So how do you make one?  These are knitted in slightly heavy double-knitting weight yarn on 4.5mm circular needles but you can make them bigger or smaller by choosing different yarn and needles.  Cast on 6 stitches and work a short i-cord stalk (6 rows or so). Now increase every fourth stitch till you get 8 stitches.  After that it’s a bit too big to work as i-cord so work flat stocking stitch instead but slow down the increase rate.  On the plain rows increase every fourth stitch.  On the purl rows don’t increase at all.  After about 20 rows cast off and you should have something that looks like one of the mushrooms in the photo.

Have a go! Have fun with it and let us know how you get on.