KEEP ME WARM
US standard issue military woobie, acquired from US soldier by my parents in Songkhla Refugee Camp where they camped on a beach without shelter for more than 6 months after the Vietnam War, while waiting to be notified of which nation would accept them as immigrants. This beach is where I was conceived. This blanket was my comfort blanket up until the age of 14.
Patchwork blanket, one of five, made by ‘the local church ladies’ for my family’s arrival to Wellington, New Zealand. One blanket for two people, for my family of 10. Note the seasonal design decisions, patterns of the time on one side and muted wools on the other. This one was used for several years by my grandparents, and I found it tucked in their closet in Massachusetts when I was in 8th grade, via which I learned this oral history. I took it back to Sydney Australia, where I lived, and it has traveled with me upon my more recent immigration to the US. Both of my grandparents have passed in the last few years.
Patchwork blanket knitted in 2004 to capture the colors of Aotearoa, where I was born, and in an attempt to memorialize my homeland during my last trip there. On a skate tour, I invited folks I shared time with to also knit a row. My home is then translated through local wools, local dye colors, the practice of learning and teaching to knit, and communally making the piece. This sat on my bed as a cover for 7 or so years before immigrating to the US.