Category Archives: charity

UPDATE Covid Heart

Michelle sent me an update on the COVID Hearts! The administrator of Villa Forum sent her some pictures and I thought you might like to see them. Everyone involved thanks you for your contributions. Michelle feels very humbled … sometimes I forget how remarkably easy it is to make a difference in the world.

PROJECT Baker’s Twine (& COVID Hearts update)

Baker’s Twine

My first COVID project was this cloth-type-thing, Baker’s Twine. I don’t know why, but I thought that using a marled yarn would come out looking like holding two strands together, but it turns out it it doesn’t. Doesn’t matter, I made a pot holder or trivet or towel or something and it’s good and I’m happy!

The pattern, Baker’s Twine, had an interesting technique for making and inserting the loop, so that was entertaining. It’s knit on small needles, and I found I needed slippier needles and changed to a metal pair. The yarn was thicker than that used in the pattern and my project came out wider (one entire skein made the piece 12.5“/32cm long x 10.5”/26cm wide, and that was a 3.75mm/US5 needle). If you want a smaller potholder size you can omit one pattern repeat (12 sts). The pattern was not free, and I felt like it was a bit overpriced, but I tried something new and learned something new.

The yarn is new one around here, Borgo De’Pazzi Amore Cotton. It’s a blend of recycled cotton and poly fibres (apparently the synthetic content is in there to shore up the recycled cotton and make it yarnable, but it doesn’t feel or look like Tupperware) and you can feel the texture of the two strands spun together. It’s machine wash and dryable, so I figured it would make a good kitchen textile. Interestingly, while it doesn’t look thick, the ball-band suggests a 6.5mm/US10.5 to 8mm/US11 needle or hook. It’s also made in Italy, so first world/no slavery. One skein made a substantially sized piece of fabric. If you want to make a Potholder that looks like the one in the pattern’s photos (below) I’d use Cascade Ultra Pima (one skein of each colour).

Materials

Update on COVID Hearts

Michelle picked up and distributed the fist batch of COVID hearts and it was an IMMENSE SUCCESS! She dropped them off at Villa Forum, a long term care home in Mississauga. The staff were profoundly touched and the nurses gave her an ovation of hand hearts. Your efforts were extremely well received!

Michelle is working on a second batch to take to another long term care home, and you can drop your contributions off at the store or mail them to us. You can read more about the COVID hearts HERE.

MAKE Hearts for Patients with Covid

My client Michelle brought this initiative to my attention and we decided this is a great bandwagon we’d like to join …. people are knitting and crocheting little hearts for people hospitalized with COVID and their families. One of the most heartbreaking realities of the COVID pandemic is that hospitalized patients have to be isolated from their families and are dying alone. The premise of the heart production is you make little hearts in matching sets of two; one is given to the patient and the other goes to their family. The idea is to try and create a connection in a patient’s dying moments, and hopefully some much needed comfort for both parties.

If you would like to contribute your knitting and/or crochet skills and labour, I will provide a drop-off location at the store for your hearts and Michelle will come pick them up and distribute them to local hospitals.

Materials

Patterns

Use any pattern for little hearts that you like, here are a few options:

Requirements

  • Hearts must be little, small enough to fit in the palm of your hand.
  • Hearts must be in matching sets (red with red, pink with pink, etc).
  • Each pair of hears should come in their own little ziplock baggie (for sterilizing purposes and etc).
  • I doubt there are colour requirements, but I think people would probably think red or pink would be nice.

Drop-Off

Drop off your little hearts at Knit-O-Matic (1382 Bathurst St, Toronto). You can knock on the door Monday to Saturday 12 to 5 pm (I’ll put on my face-mask and you can pitch them at me) … or just leave them in our mailbox and I’ll figure it out.

COMPLETED The Ride for Heart

The Ride For Heart

I just wanted to thank all of the people who donated to my fundraising bike ride for the Heart and Stroke Foundation. You are both very kind and generous, and your support means the world to me!

FYI, we were supposed to do the 25km ride, but we just kept going and scored ourselves an extra 25km … I’m a little tender in the posterior, but I totally earned my donations this year! If you wanted to donate but didn’t get around to it it isn’t too late – my brother is only $12 ahead of me, I think that needs to be rectified …

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PROJECT Great Hera + The Ride for Heart

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Me & my father at the half-way point on a particularly wet & cold Ride for Heart.

Ride for Heart

Some of you already know that every year I do a charity bike ride with my father. This year I managed to drag my BROTHER along, so all three of us are riding 25km up, and then back down the Don Valley Parkway (a local highway).

Anyway, the purpose of the even, besides getting out of the house and getting some exercise, is to rise funds for the Canadian Heart and Stroke association, who does A LOT of important work helping EVERYONE improve their cardiac health (after all, scientific research has no borders). According to an article in the news yesterday women are TWICE as likely to die from a heart attack than men. This is NOT GOOD, because I know from computery data stuff that 95% of the people reading this are WOMEN! Sure, I’ve got a vested interested in keeping you alive, many of you reading this are my clients, but I also feel strongly that the world needs women, as many as it can get. And as women, we deserve to be strong, healthy, and happy.

So not only am I going to ask you to donate to my ride for heart, but I’m going to ask you to write to your own Heart Health organization and ask them to fund research into women’s cardiac health (if you are Canadian it is the Heart and Stroke Foundation, if you are in the United States I believe it is the American Heart Association). 

Thank You SO MUCH!  ~ Haley

P.S. They symptoms of heart attack in women are often different than those seen in men. Women can have chest symptoms (the ‘Hollywood’ clutching of the chest & sweating), or any of the following:

  • profound nausea and vomiting with palpitations
  • lightheadedness
  • extreme fatigue
  • discomfort in the neck, jaw, shoulder, arms or back

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WW HAT COMBO

Great Hera!

Since I’ve been talking about women’s health, who better to invoke than the head amazon herself, Wonder Woman. I’ve actually seen this hat in the wild, on some dude in the subway, and it was AWESOME. Sure, you can still wear your Pussy Hat to protests, but sometimes you want something a bit dressier for your day-to-day lady needs. The pattern isn’t free, but it’s only $3, which I don’t begrudge to have someone else do the work of charting the symbol.

To make things easier, I’ve pulled all the suitable colours off the shelf and come up with colour combinations that work well together (you can never really tell online which shades are actually going to look good). I personally like a darker, more sombre colour combo with a dark red, gold and blue, but I know that everyone has different Wonder Woman Toque needs, so I chose colours that were both thematically on cue and look great together. By the way, if this project appeals to you, you might want to bookmark or Pinterest this post for future reference – you’ll want to revisit the colour numbers!

Since this is such a cool project, and it is in honour of a charitable fundraising endeavour, we’re offering a one time discount of 10% Off Online orders of the yarns we think will work best (discount is applicable to all colours, you can have your order shipped or choose to order online and pick-up your order in store): Use code WONDERHAT at checkout.

Needles & Notions

Yarn Options

I recommend the following yarns and colour combinations to make this project WONDERful!

1. Cascade 220 Superwash

Cascade 220 Superwash is a soft, machine washable, 100% Peruvian wool, it comes in a bunch of colours, and the price is very reasonable. You’ll need 1 skein in each colour plus optional 1 ball for pom-pom in colour 817 Aran:

2. Berrocco Vintage

Berrocco Vintage is a super soft, machine washable blend of wool and synthetic, and the price is right at $9.97/skein. You’ll need 1 skein in each colour, plus optional 1 skein for pom-pom in colour 5101 Mochi:

  • Clear Colours Combo: 5150 Berries, 5121 Sunny, 5143 Dark Denim
  • Medium Combo: 5181 Black Cherry Heather, 5127 Butternut, 5143 Dark Denim
  • Dark Combo: 5181 Black Cherry Heather, 5192 Chana Dal Heather, 51182 Indigo Heather

3. Malabrigo Rios

Malabrigo Rios is a hand dyed, SUPER soft, machine washable merino wool, and while the price point is higher at $23.97/skein, comparable hand dyed merino yarns tend to run north of $30/skein. You’ll need 1 skein in each colour, plus optional 1 skein of off-white for pom-pom in Manos Alegria Grande in AG2800:

  • Brighter Combo: 611 Ravelry Red, 96 Sunset, 415 Matisse Blue
  • Medium Combo: 611 Ravelry Red, 96 Sunset, 150 Azul Profundo
  • Dark Combo: 33 Cereza, 96 Sunset, 150 Azul Profundo (the dye lot of 33 is darker than the picture)

WW HAT COMBO

YARN SWAP April 15th

 

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NEXT SWAP: SUNDAY APRIL 15, 1-3 pm

$15 – Proceeds go to the Red Door Women’s Shelter

It’s that time of year again … time to tidy up your yarn stash and purge the stuff you’re never going to use. That’s right, you can bring us your shame and leave your guilt in our yarn swap bins with the assurance that the yarn that didn’t work out for you will have a second (or third, or fourth) life in a new home.
What do you do at a swap? Bring in the yarn and needles you don’t want and take home whatever you like from our swap bins. The leftovers are donated to charities, and don’t be embarrassed by the quality of the yarn you bring, whatever is left over is donated to charities like Street KnitWest Toronto Support Services, and Gilda’s Club, most of whom prefer acrylic!
If you want to donate but can’t make the date please feel free to drop it by when we are open, sealed up in a plastic bag. The only yarn we can’t accept is anything that is strongly scented (cigarette smoke or perfume). We are also a drop-off point for Street Knit and Knitted Knockers of Canada.
  • $15 to participate in the swap (proceeds go to the Red Door Women’s Shelter)
  • Drop-in, no need to sign up
  • Everyone is welcome, all skill levels
  • Location: 1382 Bathurst St, Toronto ON
  • In-Store only, NOT ONLINE

YARN SWAP Jan 28

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Yarn Swap

Sunday, January 28, 1 to 3 pm

It’s that time of year again … time to tidy up your yarn stash and purge the stuff you’re never going to use. That’s right, you can bring us your shame and leave your guilt in our yarn swap bins with the assurance that the yarn that didn’t work out for you will have a second (or third, or fourth) life in a new home. And while you are here you can also drop off your knitted donations for Street Knit and Knitted Knockers of Canada!

What Is A Yarn Swap?

What do you do at a swap? Bring in the yarn and needles you don’t want and take home whatever you like from our swap bins.

Leftovers Go To Charity

The leftovers are donated to charities, and don’t be embarrassed by the quality of the yarn you bring, whatever is left over is donated to charities like Street Knit, West Toronto Support Services, and Gilda’s Club, most of whom prefer acrylic!

Donate Any Time

If you want to donate but can’t make the date please feel free to drop it by when we are open, sealed up in a plastic bag. The only yarn we can’t accept is anything that is strongly scented (cigarette smoke or perfume). We are also a drop-off point for Street Knit and Knitted Knockers of Canada.

The Rules

Yarn swap is a congenial, collective, happy event. We gently remind our swappers to play nicely in the yarn boxes:

  • Be Kind
  • Be Gentle
  • Share
  • Don’t Grab
  • Don’t Hoard
  • Don’t bring anything that smells of cigarette smoke (it is unfortunately destined for the garbage).

This is a FREE drop-in event, you do not need to register, just show up!