Whilst the big boys were handing out gold statuettes in Hollywood last night, here in London we were handing out something much more coveted - the first ever Knitting in Film and Television Awards! The KNIFTAs were conceived one night in 2008 and are a celebration of knitting and crochet on screen - the good, the bad, the weird. Last night's party saw tears of joy and emotion, competition was fierce, hooks and needles were out in force and the Hoegaarden was flowing (mainly into Gerard).
We gathered in the luxurious surroundings of the upstairs bar at The Crown and Two Chairmen in Soho to screen a selection of brilliant short films and to announce this year's winners. Gerard was Twittering live from the ceremony to the interweb and you can see our photos in our gallery, (if you were there, add your own to our Flickr group NOW!
And the winners are.....
Best Knitting Scene
Chi McBride for Pushing Daisies - Chi beat competition from Marion Cotillard and the Japanese film Wool 100% for this prize. The jury were impressed by Chi's willingness to learn to knit for the role...and his gun cosies!
Funniest Knitting Scene
Competition was fierce for this one. The original inspiration for the KNIFTAs, Jack McBrayer was in the running for his shameful use of a crocheted bikini pretending to be knitting in 30Rock. We screened the Bosnian-Herzegovinan Eurovision Song Contest entry by Laka (and his 'knitting' brides) too, but the outright winner was Jane Wood for going above and beyond in Holby City last summer.
We are pleased to say that Jane has made a full recovery and she was there to collect her award last night. Jane was great - and her acceptance speech was very moving, "I've been an actress for nearly 40 years, and this is the first award I've ever won!" She deserved it!
The award for the Best Knitwear went to British designer Ruth Myers for her cosy costumes in The Golden Compass. Ruth couldn't be at the party, but we'll be sending her award to her in LA this week.
We had two of the nominees represented at the awards last night so we had to keep them apart for fear of a ruckus! Both created by the furtive minds at the McCann Erickson agency the much talked about Shreddies ad was up against the less-seen Staples ad. It was a controversial decision but the winner was Staples. Georgina Landrey (above) collected the award on behalf of the team behind the ad...and Sam Lewis, representing the Shreddies team took his defeat on the chin like a good sport.
Finally, we had a short selection of clips from Wallace and Gromit to show off the work of Nick Park, winner of the Outstanding Contribution to Knitting in Film and Television. Nick's award is on it's way to Bristol as we speak and we hope it finds a place nestled between his Oscars.
We'd like to thank everyone who made the party possible last night, not least all the actors, directors and producers who gave permission to screen their films. We'd also like to say a big thanks to Vanessa, who handknitted the 'film strips' for each award and to Graham, our technical expert on the night. We're now taking nominations for the KNIFTAs 2010, so if you see any knitting or crochet let us know.