In the last couple of days I've come across a couple of interesting -- and inspiring -- fibre-related stories on the interwebs...
Volunteers across the U.K. have knitted up more than 1,500 jumpers for the Little Hen Rescue Centre in Norwich, England. That's right, sweaters for chickens. Now, Piggy's not generally in favour of non-human animals in knitwear -- mini-brained people shelling out big bucks on designer outfits for their mini dogs to be wheeled around in baby strollers really turn me off -- but I'm all for these chic chicks.
The charity buys battery hens who've outlived their peak fertility -- saving them from the slaughterhouse -- and finds them new homes. First, though, they need to get healthy, and grow back a full set of feathers. The sweaters -- which are more like bibs, and allow for the flapping of wings -- help keep the hens warm, which in turn helps promote feather-regrowth.
Check out a video about the charity and the sweaters here, and the pattern for a "Basic Chux Tux" here.
"Milk Bag Lady": Crochet for a Cause
A 69-year-old woman in Dunnville, Ontario is using strips of plastic milk bags to make sleeping mats and therapy teddy bears for people in developing countries.
Dianne Scott, who calls herself the "Milk Bag Lady", started the project in 2006, and now co-ordinates more than 70 teams of crocheters who transform the bags -- the outer bags that hold three pouches of milk inside -- into water- and pest-resistant mats and bears. She runs the still-nameless effort from her home, and works with other non-profits to distribute them to countries around the world.
Read more about it here.
I'll admit right now that I've never done any charity knitting. And I'm starting to feel a wee bit guilty about it. I think it's about time I look for an organization to do a little knitting for. And it probably would be a little knitting -- let's be honest, my output is pretty small to begin with. But every little bit helps, right?
I'm also going to make a rather embarrassing confession: a few months ago, in a comment on the Harlot's blog, I committed to donate to Medecins Sans Frontieres/Doctors Without Borders, as part of her amazing Knitters Without Borders campaign. I haven't done it. I could give you a litany of excuses, but really...they're all pretty much crap. Yes, I've not had the best few months, money-wise, but I could have spared a few bucks.
So I'm writing a cheque today. It won't be a huge one, by any means. But again, every little bit helps. I'll have a photo of it up here tomorrow. :-)
How about you? Have you done any charity knitting or crocheting? How much time do you spend on it? How did you choose which organization to help out? Or do you contribute independent of an organized charity? Or are you like me, and haven't yet used your needles and hooks on a charitable project?
Leave me a comment below this post by the end of next week -- that's Friday, March 27th -- and I'll use one of those random number thingamajigs to select a winner, who will receive something nice from my stash AND a $25 donation to the (registered) charity of the winner's choice -- in her/his name, of course.