Our very own St John’s Yarnbomber!

Nicola Bennett tells us about the crochet toppers she has made – which have been popular with young and old walking past St John’s church.

What inspired you to start crocheting in the first place?

I’ve always been interested in craft and one winter I was stuck in a fracture boot and there was a magazine that had come out called “How To Crochet” which was only 99p so I sent James up the shop to buy it for me! Now, I crochet every day!

When did you first find out about the post box topper phenomena?

I saw somebody whose name is the “Tunbridge Wells Yarnbomber” on Instagram and she had made a few over lockdown, and I thought it looked like a fun idea. As we already have a crocheted blanket in every room in the house I thought this would give me something totally different to attempt.

What’s rewarding and frustrating about doing a post box topper?

The most frustrating part is trying to get the main ornament in the middle to stand up and to stay standing up. The vase for the daffodils (a.k.a. the St David’s Day Topper) was by far the trickiest because the vase needed a lot of stability (and scaffolding!) to help it stay in place – we ended up with coat hangers and all sorts trying to keep that vase up! The most rewarding part is seeing people smile at them when they walk past the church.

What toppers have you done so far?

The first one was a Valentine’s Day one which had a little heart man on top, then I did the vase of daffodils for St David’s Day, then the St Patrick’s Day little shamrock, then the Easter Bunny one. Rowan at South St Cafe asked me to put one together for the double post box outside Oakhill’s Estate Agent – that one is a rainbow topper with a cup cake and flat appliqué ice-creams on it. The current one outside St John’s, for those who do not recognise the characters, is from the game Pokemon as St John’s is a special location called a Pokestop in the game “Pokemon Go” so I though a fun Pokemon-themed one for the kids would be in order!