January 2021
How to make blankets, hats and mittens if you can’t knit or crochet
Melinda Flatley, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Recipient: People affected by poverty   Initiative: Knit2Gether

I love your Knit2Gether idea for The Garden…to start now and stockpile knitted items for distribution to those in need.

The thought occurs that many people do not know how to knit (or crochet), but there are still ways for them to contribute. I love the idea of turning thrift store sweaters into hats and mittens. I’ve done these from my own traced hand.

There are a gazillion sites with tutorials on the internet, but here are two examples (see links below). Some assembly methods don’t require a sewing machine, and there is even a suggestion to glue-gun the pieces together (I haven’t tried that method, so don’t know how they would stand up.) You need to use all-wool sweaters and put them in the washer and dryer to felt them first. That gives a nice thickness. Folks might already have some raw materials hanging around from accidentally washed wool!

These are so easy you can even recruit CYC kids to do the felting and assembly. There are patterns out there for sewing fleece items as well.

Click here for a video on how to make mittens from sweaters.

Click here to learn how to make baby hats from sweaters.

Here’s another idea for those who cannot knit. The local woman’s club I belong to does fundraising and charity work. This Christmas, we made no-sew fleece blankets for a local nursing home. We got the kits on sale from Joann Fabric for $6 each, and then members cut and tied them. Easy, low skill project, but could translate into warm wishes for homeless and/or elderly. There are also a number of designs suitable for baby blankets. The kits were cheaper than buying the fleece separately and less time-consuming than trimming and matching two pieces together.

Click here to view the kits, which start at $7.99, with a 20% discount for online shoppers.