2012 Year in Review: Charity projects and crafting for a cause

This year, I donated more projects and patterns to charity (and causes) than I have for quite a long time.

I started off 2012 by making 6″ granny squares.  I sent off 40 to Binky Patrol in May as part of the Crochetlist charity challenge.

26 6″ granny squares.

In June, I hosted the charity challenge for Crochetlist on behalf of Bideawee‘s Manhattan Adoption Center.  I created a pattern e-book, 30 Purrfect Stitches for Pet Blankets, and I donate all of the profits from its sale to animal welfare organizations.  So far, I’ve raised over $180 for Bideawee and the Humane Society of New York!

I also collected about 70 pet blankets for Bideawee.

In August, my very first knitting pattern was published in support of the 2013 Knotty Knitters for Autism calendar.  You can read my interview with Marsha Cunningham, the organizer, here.  (And calendars are still available for sale here.)

In the fall, I made two hats and also donated a scarf to the Hats 4 the Homeless drive hosted by Lion Brand Yarn Studio.

The Studio’s November window was all about crafting for charity.

This year, I made a strong effort to destash.  In addition to using up yarn for new charity projects, this also meant rummaging through my bins for existing projects and yarn to donate.  In September, I donated a bunch of yarn to the Roosevelt Yarnies and Knitters and Crocheters Care.

And in December, I mailed off 6 hats, 5 scarves, and 2 cowls I crocheted in years gone by to the Oyate Teca Project, a charity I found through the Friends of Pine Ridge Reservation.  I also included this wool scarf I made in 2012.

I sent out a very big bear I crocheted in 2008 to a drive for the children of Newtown, CT that I read about on FreshStitches.

I’m not sure why I crocheted an enormous bear (other than because I wanted to try out the pattern at the time), but I’m hopeful that he’s found a better home than squished into a plastic bin in my apartment.

I also packed up 60 (!) granny squares to send to Afghan Squares for Pine Ridge.  These included the charity squares I made as part of the second Year of Projects and a bunch of squares I found hiding in a yarn bin during the summer.  I will mail these out by the end of the week.

I’m not sure I’ll be able to keep up this much charity crafting next year (especially since a many of my donations were actually crocheted years ago), but I’m glad I was able to help out this much in 2012.

I also started a Pinterest board of charities that accept handmade donations, in case you are looking for places to donate.

Do you have a favorite crochet or knit charity or charity project?

FO Friday: September Charity De-stash

This week, I finally finished a project I’ve been talking about since last year:  I donated 4,170 yards of synthetic yarn that I had no plans of using to charities.  (That’s the equivalent of about 11.5 skeins of Red Heart Super Saver, in case you need a visual.)

I’ve been participating in the Surmount the Stash challenge all year, and every month I’ve said that I would try to find a local charity to donate some unloved yarn to, but I never got around to it.  A few weeks ago, I was looking for some things in my stash and realized just how much space was taken up by yarn I never plan to use.  I went online and found that a local hospital‘s crochet and knitting group accepted donations.  After emailing the coordinator, I found that they would take any acrylic or acrylic blend yarns that are machine washable, and I started packing a bag.

On Monday, I delivered a 3,637 yard donation to the Roosevelt Yarnies.  This included:

An assortment of the yarns included in the donation to Roosevelt Yarnies.

I also included some extra hooks and needles that I had on hand.

With a little searching on Ravelry, I discovered that there was in fact a charity that would accept novelty yarns.  That is how I ended up sending Knitters and Crocheters Care 5 full and several partial skeins of Bernat Boa (533 yards).

Yes, I did donate 7-1/2 skeins. I already used a bunch, of what I initially had if you can believe it.

I’m really glad that these yarns could find a purpose elsewhere.  I bought these when I was buying anything in the world that was on sale.  Since participating in Surmount the Stash and the 23 Day Frugal Living Challenge,  I’ve been looking at my yarn (and other things in my life) much differently.

For the first time in years, all of my synthetic and synthetic blend yarns fit into one plastic tub, and my entire yarn stash fits into my plastic tubs.  (Previously, I always had a bag or box with yet more yarn that couldn’t fit anywhere else stuffed in a closet or on the floor.)  I’ve also reduced my collection by the equivalent of an entire plastic tub in just a month.  Now, I can actually find the yarns I want to use to make something fun!  Wow.

For more Finished Objects, visit Tami’s Amis.