When we brainstormed the ideas for the this month, we were excited - several Knitcircus staff members claim Irish heritage, and March is just around the corner. Several of us have started dipping our toes into learning more about our families' cultural backgrounds, and this seemed like a great opportunity to get creative in exploring our staff's Irish heritage.
One of the two clubs is based on the folk song The Orange and the Green, a song that pokes fun at the struggles of growing up in an interfaith household. What was not communicated well internally is that the song is an allegorical one; there is a long history of violent struggle between the Catholic Majority and the Protestant minority of Ireland, represented by the colors green and orange, respectively. Due to this, the description written about the club offering was insensitive and appropriative. This has since been rectified.
Additionally, there were some mistakes made in the creation of the original graphic used to promote the club. First, the Irish flag's colors were accidentally reversed during the editing process, and a four leaf clover (a symbol of good luck) was used in place of a shamrock (what St. Patrick used to convey the message of the Holy Trinity to the pantheistic Celts). These errors have also been fixed.
In reviewing these mistakes, we had several long discussions among the staff about what it means to unpack secular versus cultural aspects of our Irish heritage, and the process of finding our place in the Irish diaspora. It was determined that in addition to the changes described above, these club offerings were better described as Irish-American Heritage Month clubs instead of St. Patrick's day clubs.
Our unwavering gratitude goes to our customers who took the time to point out to us the inaccuracies of our original club descriptions and graphics. They were gracious enough to share their time and wisdom with us, which they shouldn't have had to do. However, as a result of their efforts and knowledge, I and the rest of the Knitcircus Crew, have learned from this experience, for which I am grateful. To anyone else who may have been uncomfortable with the inaccuracies in our original promotion for this club offering, you have my sincerest apologies.
At the beginning of my tenure as Owner of Knitcircus, I made a commitment to hold myself and my team accountable for mistakes. This time, we got it wrong on the first attempt, but that doesn't mean that we won't try again.
If you wish to see your culture or heritage represented in our colorways, we'd love to collaborate with you on colorway inspiration. Our policy is that we only make colorways that celebrate the heritages and cultures of the Knitcircus staff members - until we get a request from a customer to make something that represents them. If you have a request for us, please drop us a line at email@example.com.
If you come across a colorway name or description in our repertoire that makes you uncomfortable or is offensive, please do reach out to us so that we may rectify the situation. We welcome your feedback, and strive to do better each and every day.