Posts Tagged ‘knitting’

Flavr Savr

February 25, 2010

The Flavr Savr tomato was the first commercially grown genetically engineered food to be granted a license for human consumption.

This is my attempt to recreate this landmark vegetable out of yarn. My knitted version might not be perfect, but neither was the actual GM tomato, first sold in 1994, it was only available for a couple of years before production ceased.


Pure Nobel Prize Gold

February 17, 2010

Thank you to the highly organised team who coordinated the search for this beautiful yellow and gold Nobel prize winning yarn. As we read about the history of genetics, we noticed a cluster of Nobel prizes in the field between the late 1950’s and the mid 1960’s, when the genetic code was understood. Here they are:

1957 – Alexander Robertus Todd received the Nobel Prize for chemistry for synthesising chemicals leading to the discovery of the structure of DNA.

1958 – Beadle and Tatum received the Nobel Prize for medicine and physiology for demonstrating that one gene controls the production of one enzyme.

1959 – Arthur Kornberg received the Nobel Prize for medicine and physiology for demonstrating that DNA can copy itself.

1962 – Watson and Crick received the Nobel Prize for medicine and physiology for their discovery of the structure of DNA.

1965 – Jacob and Monod received the Nobel Prize for medicine and physiology for demonstrating how genes are switched on and off.

5 gold pom-poms coming up…

Translating the history of genetic engineering into a knitting pattern? Blue yarn. Definitely.

February 4, 2010

A few stitches later

The first attempt at purl stitch resulted in a large red knot and needles in a twist. This second attempt might not yet be Dolly the sheep, or even the Flavr Savr tomato but it’s getting there, building on human error, stitch by stitch.

The first few tentative stitches…

February 3, 2010

Drop-stitch Dorothy takes the first step

But we’re not going to let broken bones get in the way of scientific progress. On Tuesday we headed down to Somerset House on Tuesday to join SOCK (Society of Courtauld Knitters) who’ve very kindly taken us in and offered to teach us all they know. Armed with genetics books, a charity-shop haul of needles straight from someone’s nan’s roof, and wool scraps scrounged from friends and relatives, it was time to get our needles dirty.

And so after two weeks of being told ‘the bunny goes up the hill, round the tree, and down the hole’ by patronising youtube knitting tutorials, endlessly trawling wikipedia and trying to get to grips with imperial to metric needle sizes, Drop-stitch Dorothy cast ON. We’re well and truly off…though only in about 1860 so far.

I’m getting stuck into Darwin’s theory of evolution and Mendel’s pea is also coming soon…

If anyone knows of any knitting techniques which only require one hand or has any ends of wool balls which would like to get involved in a creative science project please let us know!