Nova Scotia

Handcrafted poppies on display in the Annapolis Valley

Annapolis Valley residents have handcrafted thousands of poppies that are on display at two museums this Remembrance Day.

There are 2,300 poppies cascading down at the entrance to the Kings County Museum in Kentville, N.S., and almost 1,400 are on display inside the MacDonald Museum in Middleton, N.S.

Marie Meldrum, a member of Four Seasons Fibre group, saw large displays of knitted and crocheted poppies elsewhere in Canada and the U.K.

Along with the group, she pitched the idea to create a local display to the Kings County Museum in December 2022.

“When I actually saw the cascade being pulled up to that top window it was very emotional,” said Meldrum.

Meldrum is no stranger to knitting poppies. In 2015, she placed 212 on the graves of soldiers, including a relative, who died in Villanova, Italy.

Meldrum said about 100 community members contributed to the display in Kentville, which has crocheted and knitted poppies.

“If it’s crocheted, it’s a little bit faster, if it’s knit, a little bit longer,” said Meldrum who estimates each poppy takes about 20 to 30 minutes to create.

About 600 students at Kings County Academy also helped each other craft foam poppies for the fence at the bottom of the display in Kentville.

Students also helped craft poppies for the display in Middleton.

A display of poppies is shown at MacDonald Museum in Middleton, N.S. A volunteer also crocheted a miniature soldier. (MacDonald Museum/Facebook)

Claire Grazette, director of the MacDonald Museum, said the students used a felt pattern. She said the other poppies are made of wool, fabric and beads.

“We have some that are rug-hooked. We have tartan ones.” Grazette said. “They came from all kinds of fabulous people within the community who volunteered.”

The MacDonald Museum will be open on Remembrance Day at noon for about an hour, according to Grazette. She said there has been plenty of interest in the display located on the museum’s staircase.

“We’re very proud of it … and not quite sure how we’re going to top it next year,” Grazette said.

Grazette and Meldrum hope to see the trend of poppy displays grow in the valley.

“We’re hoping that next year that other villages and communities in the Annapolis Valley will come on board,” Meldrum said.

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