Located near Heinz Field on the North Shore in Pittsburgh, is a large 10 ft bronze sculpture of Pennsylvania native, Mister Fred Rogers. The statue, created by artist Robert Berks, weighs about 4 tons and was dedicated on November 5, 2009. [Source]
Two years later, artist Alicia Kachmar crocheted a gigantic red cardigan sweater for the statue. The red cardigan was arguably Rogers’ most recognizable piece of clothing worn on his famous children’s television series Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood.
Alicia said the idea was started by the Outpost Journal, a not-for-profit art and design publication. Outpost had put out a request for capable crocheters in the area and Alicia answered the call.
In an interview with Misters Rogers & Me, Alicia explains:
“I worked during the day and then babysat until 11pm every night, so I would work on it after my ‘charge’ went to bed. I don’t even want to know how many hours it took! It took many many, skeins of yarn, and I actually crocheted with 3 strands of yarn together and a giant crochet hook… Because of the way the statue was made, with his arms against his legs, I couldn’t just ‘crochet a sweater’; it had to be done in panels and then sewn onto him. The part of the sweater that I am most proud of is the zipper–it’s a real zipper!”
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