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UK team win the Heavy Metal Knitting World Championships in Finland

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Photo - String Thing of the UK beat the competition to win the Heavy Metal Knitting World Championships (Irma Lehikoinen)
Photo - String Thing of the UK beat the competition to win the Heavy Metal Knitting World Championships (Irma Lehikoinen)   -   Copyright  Video footage thanks to Heavy Metal Knitting World Championships
By Tim Gallagher

A UK team has beaten Finnish and Scottish/Indian rivals to win the Heavy Metal Knitting World Championships.

The contest, which was held in Joensuu, Finland, was rocked by a late withdrawal by German and Swedish teams but saw British group String Thing crowned the winners.

All together eight acts - with teams from Australia, Finland, UK, Scotland/India, Japan, and the US - competed in the performance-based contest in Joensuu Market Square.

Crowning String Thing, the Jury were keen to point out that their decision had been unanimous.

“The winning team pulled off a surprising and energetic show. Creativity was shown in many different forms – from costumes to the using of space and stage.

"The show popped from the stage in the form of huge yarn balls and the audience was included to have fun with the artist.“

The final eight acts were whittled down from applicants who submitted videos for the qualification round earlier this year.

The Jury in Joensuu included Anni Kokkonen, the vocalist of melodic metal band Nevicate, and Dalva Lamminmäki the event organiser at Susiraja Metal Club.

What is heavy metal knitting?

Lasse Simonen
Scottish/Indian group Woolfumes got second place at the contest in FinlandLasse Simonen

This year’s Heavy Metal Knitting World Championship was the third ever, and the second in-person event, with the first taking place virtually.

The artform brings together handicrafts and heavy metal music, with performers showing off their woolwork skills while performing as part of a band.

The competition originated in metal-loving Finland, where the organisers claim that the home of Eurovision winners Lordi boasts 50 heavy metal bands per 100,000 citizens.

Their team say the great joy of creativity brings the seemingly disparate hobbies together.

"When playing guitar as well as knitting stitches it is all about the pleasure of creating something cool with your hands. And - it's all about the attitude," say the organisers on their website.

String Thing, which contains performers from Scotland and India, beat rivals Woolfumes who came in second place. The US-Based UniKorn came in third.

“The performance reminded us all about the fact that knitting is definitely not boring,” the jury said of UniKorn.

The runners up were Backstage Knitter, Sweden, Bunny Bandit, US, Cindy Yoshieda, Japan, Crafts with Ellen, Germany, Maatiaisgootti, Finland, Titan feat. Dexter the Dropbear, Australia, and Yuki Redrock, Japan.

The next Heavy Metal Knitting World Championships will be held in July 2023.