It’s a stitch up! OS has Great Britain all sewn up

Using a wide range of techniques, our talented Craft Club have created a fantastic Great British Craftography Mapand we’re putting it up for auction to raise money for Solent Mind, our corporate charity. The crafty individuals recreated the Ordnance Survey National Grid into a 2.2m by 1.2m wall hanging. And you can now bid for the unique, mappy piece of art in an online charity auction.

OS Craft Club with their creation

OS Craft Club with their creation

The OS Craft Club was founded in 2015 and 21 of the 28 members have collaborated on the craftographic map. The 91 tiles of the National Grid, each measuring 15cm by 15cm, showcase 16 different crafts including loom weaving, tapestry and Fair Isle knitting.

Grid square NG showing the Isle of Skye by Hazel Slawson

Tile NG showing the Isle of Skye by Hazel Slawson

For each tile, which represents 100 km2 on the National Grid, the crafter chose a notable subject from the area covered. It could be a geographical feature, a well-known landmark, a local food, or even a craft or material associated with the area.

From a beautifully knitted cardigan sporting a Welsh dragon to represent Cardigan, to traditional Shetland lace knitting, to an applique scene from the Isles of Scilly, the club have been truly inventive. Once the team completed the 55 land tiles,  there were 36 sea tiles to add, and then the task of stitching it into the final wall hanging.

Grid square SK, showcasing the OS Flying Unit, based at East Midlands Airport, by Jean Martin

Tile SK, showcasing the OS Flying Unit, based at East Midlands Airport, by Jean Martin

There are even plenty of references to OS woven into the Craft Club’s work, with contours, trig pillars and even our Flying Unit represented across the tiles.  Take a look and see if you can spot them. You can read all about the individual tiles in this PDF (47 Mb) or via our Flickr channel.

With strong links between crafting and mindfulness, calming the mind and occupying the hands to create a state of peace. Crafting can help focus the mind on the present, and promote wellbeing, blocking out negative thoughts. With this in mind, the Craft Club are offering their work for auction, to fundraise for Solent Mind.

What is the National Grid?

Admiring the work of the Craft Club, but not sure what the National Grid is? Developed in the 1930s, it’s the reference system used for all OS maps, to help identify any location – or where you are – using a grid reference number. It’s a series of squares, broken down into progressively smaller units with letters and numbers.

How can I bid on the Great British Craftography Map?

Grid square SH, represented by Anglesey and Snowdonia and made by Annie Howard

Tile SH, represented by Anglesey and Snowdonia and made by Annie Howard

We’d love to raise as much money as we can for Solent Mind and support their amazing efforts which benefit the local community. Find out more about them and their wellbeing centres on their website.

The auction is live right now, and is open until 7 pm on Sunday 9 April on eBay for Charity.

Please read the full terms and conditions before bidding.


Good luck!

And don’t forget that you can visit the OS Flickr page to see the Great British Craftography Map in more detail…


The Great British Craftography Map

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