Viva Vittoria Decorate Piazza Santa Croce with Handknitted Squares
This month Viva Vittoria, a volunteer project, who’s main goal is helping women who have experienced domestic violence decorated the 3,000 square meters of the Piazza Santa Croce with beautifully decorated, handmade blankets created from 50x50cm knitted and crocheted squares.
Viva Vittoria was born in March 2015 from an idea of Cristina Begni. Sharing a photo on social media, she caught the interest of patrizia, silvia, Simona e Cristina who, united by the desire to do something immediately to stop violence against women, decided to embark on a shared project. Knitting, a metaphor for self-creation and self-development was chosen as the tool to realize this project. It proved to be a perfect medium because it consists in a widespread and easily learnt creative mode, which in all adults reconnects to familiar images, it brings out memories and creates an attitude of encounter and relationship.
Since January 2022 thousands of woman took part in the creation of these squares. Each one has been handknitted and donated by a vast community in Florence, other cities in Italy and from around the world by people ranging in age from 6 to 102. Others have arrived in the post from Denmark, Germany, Sweden, the UK and US, nearly always with thoughtful letters enclosed. Locals deliver the squares directly to the Viva Vittoria’s headquarters, which has become a social club of sorts with women gathering during the day and after-dinner to accomplish something worthwhile together. As a non-profit organization, permission to use the piazza was requested from the city council, gaining the support of city councillors Sara Funaro and Federica Giuliani. despite the fact the project had already been working for a year on making the squares!
In order to acquire a magnificently handcrafted one-of-a-kind crocheted blanket, one must donate a minimum of €20 and you can choose the square you’d like to take home in a Viva Vittoria bag with a pin and a leaflet. Proceeds will be donated to non-profit sociazione Artemisia, (Associazione Cattolica Internazionale a Servizio della Giovane Firenze) and Nosotras, Florence’s most crucial resources for victims of domestic abuse, specifically geared to providing services that are easily accessible for women.