Friday, July 18, 2008

If you wait, the universe will provide

I started knitting the Orphans for Orphans sweater with charity in mind, right from the off. Children's sweaters really excite me as a project because they allow for design experimentation on a smaller scale than a full adult-sized sweater. They take up much less wool and are much quicker to knit; I can play around with colour or stitch patterns or shaping with less risk and with the hope of getting something I would want to size up to fit myself or someone else. Of course, charity knitting is what started my knitting obsession in the first place 8 years ago, so the two just go hand in hand.

Although I'd had the sweater earmarked for charity before it was even a cast-on row, I had no idea who I would give it to. I spent some time searching online, but I couldn't find anything that satisfactorily met my criteria; I wanted something where the donation centre would be local, or would at least had a drop-off location in Toronto so that I didn't have to pay for postage, and I wanted something that would stay in the country and help people in Canada. Not that I'm downplaying the great need in many countries all over the world, I'm really trying to keep it local, to help people here at home before I start to send things off to far-off lands. So I was thrilled when I found a post on the Ravelry GTA Fibre Faces group about Warming Hands.

Warming Hands accepts donations of children's sweaters, hats, mitts, socks, and baby blankets. They are an official collector group for the Dulaan Project, but they have also just begun a charity drive for the Innu children of Northern Labrador. They re based in Ottawa, but they have a number of drop-off points in Toronto (including Knit Cafe; I've been wanting an excuse to go there more often). How perfect is this? It meets all my criteria for being Canadian and with local drop-off locations, plus it sends the items to the Maritimes! I couldn't be happier. Especially since I've been re-reading all my Elizabeth Zimmerman books, so I've got future design ideas swirling in my little head.

Until next we knit!



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