Acts of Random Kindness
There are many inspiring stories about how simple yet busy people take out time to help those who are less fortunate. Small acts of kindness can make a huge difference in person's life both for the giver as well as the receiver.
People feel compassion towards those who suffer whether they are human beings or animals. If you are one of those who like to help others at every opportunity then you will find this article useful. Especially if you have always like to knit. Even if you don't know how to knit yet but would like to learn then this article is for you.
Are you one of those who have always wanted to knit but never got round to it? Have you spotted charity knitting projects and wished you could do something as well but don't know anyone who has the time to teach you how to knit? Well you are not alone. I too have been through that situation. However, I found a way which I will share with you.
There are many websites which have instructions on how to knit the basic stitches. They also have instructions on how to choose the knitting needle and what kind of woollen yarn to buy. The staff at craft and knitting shops can help you as well. But if you are too busy and want to learn knitting by yourself then it is a good idea to learn from videos on You Tube.
Once you have learned how to knit then it is important to learn how to read the patterns.
How to Knit Basics (6.04 mins)
Learning How to Knit from Videos
There are five important things to learn to be able to start a knitting project and finish it so the yarn will not unravel at the slightest touch.
Step 1: How to cast on stitches
Step 2: How to knit
Step 3: How to purl
Step 4: How to cast off
Step 5: How to read and interpret knitting patterns
It is a variation of the steps 2 and 3 that make all the wonderful patterns that we see experienced knitters create. There are many more different stitches that can be learned as you get enough practice.
- Basic Knitting Instructions
Basic knitting information for the beginner. Cast on, knit stitch, purl stitch and casting off. With accompanying video.
- Common Phrases Used in Knitting Patterns - For Dummies
Certain phrases used in knitting patterns can be confusing. Some knitting pattern phrases aren’t as clear as they could be, but experience will make you familiar.
- Understand Knitting Abbreviations and Knitting Terms - For Dummies
To knit from patterns, you need to know knitting abbreviations and knitting terms. Read on...
- Knitting Instructions for a Basic Scarf
Find all the resources you need to knit a basic scarf in garter stitch or basket weave pattern. Find links to all the basic techniques of knitting such as how to knit, purl, cast on, bind off, etc.
Knitting for Charities - Easy and Quick Projects
It is possible to start knitting for charities as soon as you learn the basics of knitting. The reason is charities usually require blankets, scarves and beanies for all age groups. There are some charities that only require squares of a certain dimensions that they will sew into blankets. This is something even beginners can do. As for experienced knitters they could do this when they are between projects or with left over woollen yarn.
I have compiled a list of charities and their websites to start you off on simple and easy projects to help adults, homeless, war veterans, children and animals.
Project: An 8-inch Square -- This project supports the AIDS orphans of South Africa buy collecting squares that volunteers sew into blankets and distribute to those who need them. They help abandoned babies, children and AIDS orphans of which there are millions who need help today.They receive squares from nearly 44 countries that are sewn into blankets. They need all the help they can get. You can find easy free patterns to start your project.
Project: Purple Baby Caps – Click for Babies is a grassroots public education campaign which needs purple colored baby caps. The caps are given to families in hospitals, public health offices and doctor’s offices following the birth of a new baby in November and December to remind parents about the Period of PURPLE Crying. It is to increase awareness about normal infant crying and thus prevent infant abuse, namely shaken baby syndrome/abusive head trauma (SBS/AHT). Free Patterns are available on the website.
Project: Scarves for War Veterans --This charity project is for helping the veterans of USA as they honor the 70th anniversary of America's participation in World War II. They have received more than 18,000 scarves so far. They provide new patterns which is available for downloading. However, they welcome any appropriate scarves which is simple and cozy.
Project: Baby Hats, Blankets – Stitches from the Heart is membership based organization to support the costs of delivering handmade items all over the USA. It was started in California in 1997, 15 years ago and has donated nearly a million items over the years. Members can donate quilts, hats, blankets and baby booties whether crocheted, knitted, loomed or sewn.
Projects: Hats and Blankets – The Halfknits are a local group of volunteers based in Dallas/Fort Worth area. They started in 2004 and have been donating knitted and crocheted items to many charities. Their only costs are for obtaining yarn and shipping the items. Their website has many beautiful patterns for all levels of knitters.
Project: Hats, Scarves and Gloves – Hats for the Homeless was started to distribute hats, scarves and gloves for the homeless in New York City. Collection boxes are placed in many places. You can also put together a box of knitted gifts and mail it to them for distribution. Start off on this project so you can be ready to be given the weekend before Christmas.
Project: Blanket for Homeless Animals – This is a special project for Hugs for Homeless Animals and its purpose is to encourage people to knit, sew, crochet blankets for homeless and displaced animals in the shelters. The positive effects on the animals as well as the staff and visitors to the shelter is amazing. There are patterns available on the website. The Snuggles Project has both free and paid membership options.
Project: Small Knitted Doll for Children -- The word 'duduza' means 'comfort' in Swahili. These dolls bring comfort and solace to children affected by HIV/AIDS, being orphaned and suffering bereavement. The comfort doll is an excellent way to help them. You can form a group or join one near you. Learn how to make it through the helpful videos and free pattern.
The above projects and websites are only the beginning of a long and fulfilling journey of giving for the those who need help. Knitting for charity can also be a group activity and when people get together much more can be accomplished. For those who are unable to join a group and still want to contribute to the well-being of the world, knitting for charity is a good option. It is one way to make a positive impact in the world.
About the Author
Sushma Webber writes content for both web and print media. She is interested in creating a balance in life between the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual aspects. She is interested in mindful awareness practices, yoga poses and pranayama practices, mindfulness meditation, Zen meditation practices and translating these in daily life at work in front of the computer and during various activities of her life.
Knitting and crochet are her hobbies among others such as reading fiction and non-fiction books, travelling and writing books.
Sushma Webber (author) from New Zealand on March 25, 2014:
Hi raymondphilippe, yes it would be great if we could find a group and knit together. It would be very satisfying to work towards a common purpose.
Raymond Philippe from The Netherlands on March 25, 2014:
What a lovely idea to do and help your fellow man. And the fun thing, to me, seems to raise the community spirit by working together if you can find like minded knitters.
Sushma Webber (author) from New Zealand on March 24, 2014:
Hi kschimmel, you are right, knitting for charity is a great motivator. My own journey to learn knitting began because I saw a poster about knitting scarves and beanies for children in need. I tried to find someone to teach me but no one could make the time. Finally I started to learn knitting from YouTube and have done a few projects like the Duduza doll.
Kimberly Schimmel from North Carolina, USA on March 24, 2014:
Charity knitting is a wonderful way to help others. It is very motivating for beginners to know that what they make will be used by someone in need.
Sushma Webber (author) from New Zealand on March 16, 2014:
Hi Moonmaiden, what a great idea to teach others to knit so as to empower them. Wonder if any charity is doing that. Thanks for your comments.
Fayme Zelena Harper from Lucerne Valley, CA on February 05, 2014:
Thank you for sharing. Teaching others to knit is another way to empower people living in poverty. It gives them an accessible skill so they can make their own things to wear, sell or give to charities.
Joanna from Wilseyville on March 17, 2013:
Free patterns? Sweeeet! I'm on it! Thanks Sushma
Sushma Webber (author) from New Zealand on March 16, 2013:
Hi Msmillar, it is wonderful to be motivating each other. Have you seen Ravelry.com. It is a social network for knitter and crochet enthusiasts? Lots of free patterns available there.
Joanna from Wilseyville on March 16, 2013:
I love it Sushma! You are so right; I've thought about knitting for charity, but never seem to get around to it. Now I don't have any excuses, I have the yarn and needles and you've provided the charities! Thank you!
Sushma Webber (author) from New Zealand on March 15, 2013:
Hi Radcliff, I know how you feel. I too have wanted to learn to knit for a long time. The first pattern I tried to work on was a simple scarf and then a Teddy bear for a project to help kids in Christchurch to comfort them after the earthquake. That is when I was inspired to write this article. Glad you found it useful and motivating.
Liz Davis from Hudson, FL on March 14, 2013:
This is so cool! I've been wanting to learn how to knit forever--it's just one of those things that I think I'll learn "someday". This hub is a great encouragement--seeing all of the ways you can help others by knitting is a boost in the right direction. Thank you!