Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Charity Knitting Thoughts

Choc, Kathy, Erin, and I have found a variety of charity knitting possibilities (see post from 3/10/06). Over the weekend, I came up with a thought: Since we have knitters in several communities, perhaps we should set up a challenge in which we knit things for different communities/charities. Like preemie hats for the Ketchikan hospital in April (and send them to Ketchikan Choc to distribute), hospice hats for chemo patients in Juneau in May (and send them to Kathy), squares for the Keep America Warm Project in June (and send them to Erin to put together), items of your choice for the Dulaan project in July (and send them to Kathy,or just send in). We could make up a schedule that would take us through the end of 2006, if you’d like.

What do you think? My experience with a preemie hat is that it takes me about 4 hours to make one from start to totally complete, with ends sewn in. A pretty small amount of time out of a month, really. I think the other projects would also be equally short to do. We have 15 people on this team, so if almost everyone made just one hat, we’d have over a dozen to contribute! We could post photos, and if someone didn’t have time to contribute one month, they could always make something for another month.

Please comment, and perhaps we can get this going for April. Or even March – there are still 1 1/2 weeks left in this month, which would be enough time for me to knit a preemie hat.

I’ve been knitting hemp bath mitts in the past few weeks. I found a very nice weight of hemp, in four colors, at a fiber shop (The Rookery) on Shelikov Avenue in Kodiak (I was in Kodiak a couple of weeks ago on business), They’ve been turning out really well, and take so little “yarn” that I’ll probably be making them for everyone in my family for birthdays this year…I bought 8 hanks, and each one is enough for at least three mitts…

Oh, one more charity project that I just heard about: The Recycled Lamb, a fiber shop in Lakewood, CO is sponsoring knitters (i.e., supplying the yarn) to make "individually hand-painted, grown and milled in Colorado alpaca shawls which will sell for between $75.00 and $100.00 each" (they'll be auctioned off) with ALL proceeds going to Race for the Cure (Komen foundation). They need to be knit by Labor Day, in September.

Good knitting, and let's hear your thoughts about how we should move on!

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Yarn shopping report

The first shop we visited was the one on Queen Anne hill. It was great. The staff was very helpful and friendly. They also gave us the names of 3 other shops to visit. DD decided that she wanted me to make her a sweater that she saw in the shop but didn't want it in any of the colors available in that shop. The second stop was at the shop on First Avenue, in Belltown. The staff there was helpful too but not as friendly. Then it was off to Weaving Works at 4717 Brooklyn Avenue Northeast in the U district. Again the staff was helpful and the yarn yummy. The fourth shop was Acorn Street Yarn at 2818 Northeast 55th Street. Helpful staff, great yarn and a variety of knitting books. DD decided that the best colored yarn for her sweater was at this shop. The last yarn shop we visited was Fiber Gallery at 7000 greenwood Avenue North. The staff here was again helpful and friendly. I got my yarn for a hooded, cable pullover sweater here. I would go back to all of these stores again to look for yarn or just to enjoy the beauty of all that yarn.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

New Challenges for Team Alaska

Here are three possibilities for charity knitting that we could consider, to do as a team.

1. Kathy in Juneau commented... I was very interested in the Dulaan Project which Stephanie mentioned in her blog on Friday. This project distributes hats, mittens, socks, neck gaitors, scarves and sweaters for all ages from babies to adults - especially for children ages 2-10, in Mongolia. and We could gather our knitted items together and send them as a group – perhaps by June or July?

2. Erin commented…There is one called Warm Up America that knits/crochets blankets for those who may need them. The organization encourages people participating to donate to local organizations. The object is to knit 7 inch squares to make into a blanket, using any pattern you like. If we did this as a team, one of us could collect the squares and sew/knit it together before donating it. I can imagine that we’d probably want to set a date by which to complete our squares.

3. And I found this one: "Opal Sock Yarn is sponsoring a project to knit the longest laundry line of baby socks in the world. The project began January 20 and ends April 30, 2006. Knit only baby socks, any size, in any brand of wool, please no acrylic. Enter as many pairs as you like. The socks will be donated by Tutto GmbH of Germany to charity organizations there. There is Opal sock yarn as prizes for the three people who knit the most socks, and some special items as well. However, you must be a member of the OpalChatters mailing list to qualify for a PRIZE. Prizes will not be awarded to non-members. Mail socks to PT Yarn, PO Box 2784, Brookings, OR 97415, Attn: Baby Socks. Socks must reach them by April 30."

Has anyone else run across any other charities that sound good? What do you think of these? Only the third one has an imposed deadline.

Another thing that we could consider doing is a “one gift a month” challenge, to help those of us who like to give knitted holiday gifts avoid the last minute December rush! This sounds good to me. I think I could even do this, plus a charity project, if I keep the gifts small (hemp bath mitts!)

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Yarn stores

I am going to be in Seattle this weekend. Do any of you have ideas of good places to look for yarn in that area? I'll probably have enough time to go as far north as Everett, as far south as South Center and as far east as Bellevue and Kirkland. Thanks for your thoughts.


Sunday, March 05, 2006

Team Training for the next Olympics?

I’m back from Kodiak, and think it’s great that at least some of our group would like to keep the Team Alaska blog open. There should be lots of possibilities for charity knitting, or team knit-alongs. We should be able to keep things going until the next Summer Olympics, at least. I’m going to research some charity possibilities, and will post what I find out, soon. Do any of you have any particular ideas? In the meantime, I hope that some of you who haven’t had a chance to post photos of your finished Knitting Olympics projects will have a chance to do so, and show us what they look like.

While I was in Kodiak, I knit another baby hat, for another friend’s daughter, and some leg warmers for myself. Of course, I still only currently need one, but the big boot-cast comes off March 21, and I’m looking forward to wearing two leg warmers, and celebrating! For now it’s back to “dragon” socks for my grandson, which I’ll try to finish before his birthday next month. I designed the dragon graphic for the socks myself, and will knit it in intaglio – only my second project in that technique.

By the way, did everyone email the gold2006 address, and receive your Certificate of Participation for the Knitting Olympics? If not, let me know, and I can email it to you.
Good knitting,

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Olympic Music To Our Ears

Congratulations Everyone, and yes, each of you (whether you finished or not) should individually send an email ASAP to:

Stephanie says:
“This is an address set to auto-respond, so no live human will read your email. (Sorry) but every Olympian (finisher or not) who sends an email will be placed in the draw for the donated prizes. If you are part of a team, please send an individual email for each member of your team. I'll be drawing the prizes on Friday, so get your name in before then.”

Everyone should also read Stephanie’s Yarn Harlot blog, as soon as possible. In addition to being able to download your gold medals, she has written an inspirational thankyou to everyone who participated. She also has a special message to knitters who did not finish, which you must read!

And if you go to the Library page, and scroll to the bottom, under Media coverage you’ll find Catherine Hollingsworth’s article in the Anchorage Daily News.

I want to make note of one of our Knitting Olympians who does not have an internet connection, but faithfully finished her project before the Closing Ceremony. Betty N. made socks, which she will donate to charity, and figured out that it took her 57 hours and a little over 30 minutes! (I’m writing while in Kodiak on a business trip, and don’t have my notes from our conversation so don’t remember the exact number of minutes!)

This has been such a fun thing to do! I’m definitely looking forward to the Summer Olympics in 2006. In the meantime, should we keep this blog open, and discuss suggestions for another challenge?