I’m really excited to share this fun post with you today as a whole bunch of friends and I have been working on this campaign for the last several weeks, and it’s all finally come together! There’s a free pattern for my Millbrook Slouch Hat, lots of thoughts and feelings, and a sense of gratitude for all that we have. I guess it’s an appropriate post as we head into the US Thanksgiving week!
I’ve been working with Lion Brand yarn for a few months now, and I’m happy to be a part of their Yarn Heroes campaign that launched today! Lion Brand’s mission statement is “Creating a more colorful, connected, and giving world“. With this Yarn Heroes campaign, Lion Brand has gathered an awesome collection of crochet and knit bloggers to come together to inspire and encourage all of us to use our yarn-y skills to do good in the world. We were each tasked with creating a super hero identity, create a simple pattern to share, and donate our projects to a charity of our choice. Here is where our individual experiences and passions took us down so many unique and beautiful paths to do good in our own way.
First, my Yarn Hero identity. Well, this took some time, because I’m not really big into any comic book characters. I thought about what super powers I really wanted, and the first one that came into mind was healing. This year was a banner year for me and my family getting sick – so far, I’ve had pink eye, shingles, fever, strep throat, and a sinus infection. J broke his elbow, and we’ve all had the cough that never ends. I really want a superpower that heals myself and heals others around me. I thought about my kids and how, no matter what my superpower, it’d be for them. So, I ended up creating a Mama Bear type of character, or in superhero terminology, the Bionic Bernadette (‘bernadette’ means bear in German)! I wanted to incorporate the idea of warmth and coziness of family with super-healing hugs and a fierce sense of protection for my loved ones.
And now onto this idea of using our crochet and knitting skills for charity. Because why not? One piece of J’s monthly homework is to write in his journal about things he’s grateful for. November is a big month for gratitude. (Right before the big month of binge shopping!) Here are a few of my thoughts on gratitude and giving:
When we moved from New York, we donated SO MUCH STUFF. Honestly, everything happened so fast that I didn’t really take care in figuring out where everything went. Just before we moved into our new house last year, we had a young lady stop by the house asking for monetary donations for Teen Challenge International’s Alum Rock Women and Children’s Center, a transitional housing center that helps women in need. While I’m uncomfortable with giving money to strangers at my door, I asked if the charity accepted donations of clothing and household goods. I found out that the Center operates a thrift store that resells donations and uses the proceeds to fund their operations. What’s better is that the thrift shop is staffed by the women living, learning and growing at the housing center. I know my donations go straight to helping the community, and each bag I drop off is met with the most amazing, wonderful women who offer to help carry things from my car and tell me stories about how much every donation helps.
Another charity I’ve been following is Carry the Future, a new, homegrown organization that gathers new and gently used baby carriers and ships them overseas to help refugee parents carry their children on their harrowing journeys. As I sit here and write this post, with my babies in their beds, I can’t even imagine their struggles. Carry the Future mobilizes teams of volunteers to travel to Europe, meet the refugees as they arrive, then hand-deliver each and every baby carrier, often helping parents get fitted into each one. They are now also expanding to provide baby boxes to protect newborns in refugee camps, and are organizing a blanket drive and a homemade hats and toys drive to help prepare the families for the upcoming winter. They are specifically looking for new and handmade blankets up to twin-size, new and clean handmade baby hats (Lollypoms Ribbed Beanie), lovies, blankets (Granny Squares Chevron Afghan), sweaters, jackets and toys (Hedgehog, Jellyfish, Whale). You can find out more info on their Facebook page or email firstname.lastname@example.org directly if you’d like to participate!
For this Yarn Heroes campaign, I am sharing a pattern for my Millbrook Slouch Hat. You may have seen pictures of it on Instagram, gracing my daughter’s curly-haired head. The Millbrook Slouch Hat is actually a part of a set, with the cowl and mittens coming along in future posts. I will be shipping my hat to The Gracie Project, which is being organized by Jessica of The Hook Nook and Vincent of Knot Bad Crochet. I met Jessica on Instagram a while back, and I love what she does with yarn! When news of The Gracie Project popped up in my newsfeed, I knew this was where I wanted to contribute my Yarn Heroes work. Unlike the struggles of the refugees, I am familiar with Gracie’s fight against cancer, having lost my dad to liver cancer just over a year ago. Head over to The Hook Nook to hear about Gracie (she is now cancer free!!!) and how Jessica and Vincent are collecting hats of all shapes and sizes to donate to children at local hospitals. They are accepting donations through December 16, 2016, and their shipping address is listed on her blog post.
I am collaborating with a whole group of wonderful makers on the Yarn Heroes campaign, and we each have our own stories and patterns to share. Take a moment to go see their patterns and read about the charities they are creating for. All the links will open in separate tabs in your browser.
The pattern for the Millbrook Slouch Hat is listed below. Right now, you can use the code YARNHEROES2016 on Lion Brand’s website to get $5 off any purchase of $20 or more. This offer is valid until December 15, 2016. For more hat ideas, also check out my Lollypoms Ribbed Beanie or Lollypoms Sweetheart Beanie!
- 1 skein of Lion Brand Wool Ease Thick and Quick in Graphite
- Size J/6.0mm Clover USA Amour crochet hook
- tapestry needle
- The ch 2 at the beginning of each row does not count as a stitch.
- Use the No-cut join method to join each round.
- Using a size J hook on this bulky yarn creates a tight gauge for the hat. You can use a larger hook for a looser feel, but you made need to decrease the max number of stitches around to 36 stitches if you use a larger hook.
- This hat can be one size fits all.
Millbrook Slouch Hat Instructions
Round 1: Work 6 sc into a magic circle. Join to first sc with sl st. (6)
Round 2: Ch 2. Work 2 hdc into each st around. Join to first sc with sl st. (12)
Round 3: Ch 2. Work [1 hdc, 2 hdc in next st] 6x around. Join to first hdc with sl st. (18)
Round 4: Ch 2. Work [1 hdc in each of next 2 st, 2 hdc in next st] 6x around. Join to first hdc with sl st. (24)
Round 5: Ch 2. Work [1 hdc in each of next 3 st, 2 hdc in next st] 6x around. Join to first hdc with sl st. (30)
Round 6: Ch 2. Work [1 hdc in each of next 4 st, 2 hdc in next st] 6x around. Join to first hdc with sl st. (36)
Round 7: Ch 2. Work [1 hdc in each of next 5 st, 2 hdc in next st] 6x around. Join to first hdc with sl st. (42)
Round 8-9: Ch 2. Working into the extra back loop of the hdc, work 1 hdc in each stitch around. Join to first hdc with sl st. (42)
Round 10-11: Ch 2. Work 1 hdc in each stitch around. Join to first hdc with sl st. (42)
Round 12-13: Ch 2. Working into the extra back loop of the hdc, work 1 hdc in each stitch around. Join to first hdc with sl st. (42)
Round 14-15: Ch 2. Work 1 hdc in each stitch around. Join to first hdc with sl st. (42)
Round 16: Ch 2. Working into the extra back loop of the hdc, work 1 hdc in each stitch around. Join to first hdc with sl st. (42)
Round 17-20: Ch 1. Work 1 sc in each stitch around. Join to first sc with sl st. (42)
Fasten off and weave in ends.
What charity is meaningful for you, and what project will you make? Whether you choose to make hats or toys or blankets or sweaters, for kids or adults, it’s all appreciated and there’s someone out there who will benefit from the love you add to every creation!
Let me know if you make a Millbrook Slouch Hat by tagging me on Instagram (@1dogwoof)! If you donate to The Gracie Project, be sure to let Jessica (@the.hook.nook) and I (@1dogwoof) know!
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