Thursday, November 7, 2013

Ongoing Craftivism

All you craftivists out there, do you sometimes feel as overwhelmed as I do?  I want to help so many people and so many organizations, but there is only one of me.  I would love your help! 

Three projects I have tried to keep as ongoing projects are the following:

Project Linus
NICU Preemie Hats
Prayer Shawls

I designed my own crocheted prayer square for the Project Linus basic square blankets.  You see, most groups consist of members who either crochet or knit.  Instead of choosing one over the other, why not implement both and create one giant (and beautiful) patchwork style blanket?  No holes either, which is an added benefit.  So, I created a crocheted square that is the same size as a standard beginner's level knit garter stitch square.  That way, you can make a blanket with knit and crochet squares.  This is a GREAT blanket project for those who are brand new to knitting or crochet.  I would be happy to share my pattern if you are interested.  Please leave a message, and I will send it to you.  Pics are included.  Oh, and you can also knit 2 squares at a time. 

There are many great patterns on Ravelry, a free knit/crochet site.  I love a simple garter block blanket in multiple colors, a simple garter or stockinette from the bottom corner, as well as the double crochet through the back loop only of every row.  The Tiramasu blanket is lovely as well, but it does take a lot longer since it implements single crochet.

Next, I LOVE LOVE LOVE making preemie hats for the local NICU.  These whip up so quickly and are an absolute blessing to parents who want something special for their precious little one but find themselves quite limited.  Think of all those precious clothes that were purchased in advance for baby that they won't be able to wear.  A sweet hat may be their only clothing for awhile.  I love and her wonderful charity link, Rosie's Cozies.  Check it out and get crafting!

Last, but not least, is the prayer shawl ministry.  I have knitted and crocheted, and I have created a lovely (quick/easy) prayer shawl pattern that I just can't help but love.  There are also two other patterns I thoroughly enjoy making.  These are fabulous shawls for cancer patients, shut-ins, nursing homes, hospice, etc.  I know mine went specifically to breast cancer patients in the Hamilton County area.  I will put my own design first on the picture list.  I used Lion Brand Homespun in Pearl with a size L crochet hook.  I used a knit-look pattern, just like the stitch pattern I used for the crocheted Project Linus squares above.  Versatile, eh??

So, are you a shut-in, have a busy schedule, a new mom, or just want to help and have no idea where to begin?  Perfect!!  Pick up a hook or needles, choose a project, and craft away! 

What types of yarn to use for these projects??

Project Linus:

Super soft washable acrylic only.  I suggest the following brands:

1.  Vanna's Choice
2.  Red Heart Soft
3.  Bernat Satin
4.  Lion Brand Pound of Love

Preemie Hats:

Super soft washable acrylic or cotton/acrylic blends only.  I suggest the following brands:

1.  Red Heart Soft
2.  Vanna's Choice
3.  Cotton Ease
4.  Knit Picks Shine
5.  I Love this Cotton yarn by Hobby Lobby

Prayer Shawls:

Again, super soft washable acrylic or cotton/acrylic blends only.  I suggest the following:

1.  Vanna's Choice
2.  Lion Brand Homespun
3.  Bernat Satin
4.  Red Heart Soft

If it isn't soft, don't use it!  Think about the delicate skin that the yarn will be against.  Also, please choose calming colors and kid-friendly.  I would avoid neons, faddish stripes/patterning, etc. 

Where to donate??

Project Linus has great ideas.  I drop mine off at the local Police Dept. to be delivered to kids in crises situations.  You can also drop off your blankets AND preemie hats at your local Children's Hospital or Hospice center.  Prayer Shawls would be greatly appreciated by cancer centers, nursing homes, and hospice care.  Contact local churches in your area to ask if they have a prayer shawl ministry.  MANY do, and they will help you find a home for your beautifully crafted shawl.  Pray while working on your projects, asking God to bless and heal the recipient, as well as asking Him to wrap His loving arms around the recipient. 

I hope you feel the itch to start crafting for good!  Let me know when you do and what you did. 


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