April 4, 2016

Scarves for a Good Cause

The DFW Fiber Fest, a local yarn/knitter/crocheter convention that was this weekend which I also attended last year, chose Knit Your Bit as their charity program this year to provide scarves to our local veterans groups. It was developed in 2006 by the National World War II Museum in New Orleans, and provides Veterans across the country with scarves. The Museum has sample patterns on its website if you need some ideas, or you can choose any appropriate pattern you like to knit or crochet. Pretty sure they accept them all year round if you feel like making and sending some over.
As the Museum asks you to include your Name, City, State, and care instructions with each scarf so I made up some little tags. I printed mine off on cardstock I had lying around and punched holes and tied them on to the finished scarves. Fiber fest also as some for download if you don't want to make your own tags.

V For Victory
I picked out two free patterns to try. First up: V for Victory which I worked up in I Love This Yarn in Dark Olive. First off, of course, I started with a foundation double crochet row of 23 stitches rather than the chain and work into method. Once you have the foundation rows done, you start working the V. The pattern however just assumes you know where and how to skip, as well as where to place the dcs in the center of the V shape in order to end up with the right look across the rows. I can see how a novice would find this very confusing. For example, row 12 should really read: ch 2 (counts as first dc), dc in next, 4dc in chain space, 11dc across, 4dc in chain space, 2dc, which equals 23 dc across.

Then you just work a ton of rows for length, then do the V rows again, but backwards, followed by the end rows and done! I used up about half of the skein for the first, so I made a second with the V only on one end. That second one ended up being a bit short, even for a scarf, so I turned it into a cowl by seaming up the end. Each scarf was totally easy, aside from the assumptions, and took about 3 hours each.

After finishing the Proud to be one, I whipped up one more V for Victory scarf in the rest of the blue skein, as I wasn't sure if they really wanted cowls and I wanted to make sure I donating three scarves. Ya know, after looking at the one in blue I can't help but think that I could make a bunch for our school... for the Vikings!

Proud to Be
As I also had red, white and blue on hand the second pattern I tried was the Proud to Be scarf. I did not have a full skein of white to use, but I figured I had enough to make one of the white blocks with an S on it (from USA). My plan then was to make one set of the letter blocks and then make the rest of the scarf in solid red, since that's what I have the most of.

Since this scarf is worked in sc it takes a lot longer to work up. I got into the 10th row and had maybe 2 inches of scarf done, but the front post double crochet worked into the second row down is a cool way to get dense raised areas. It's like making cables, but without the open area behind that normally occurs; very cool, but super time consuming.

Once I got the three blocks of USA completed, I decided to be done with the letters. I switched over to double crochet and worked a row of white, then blue then finished out the rest of the scarf in red, making it as long as the skein lasted. Time to complete: 8 hours

While doing these projects, I am starting to realize that it is not so much the materials that I am donating, but the time, which is far more valuable and meaningful.