SQUARES SQUARES SQUARES!
Squares as always are what we need the most.
To make our lives easier, please only leave a tail 50 cms long. We bundle the squares into 50's and they can get into a terrible mess with very long tails. We would appreciate it if these tails could be neatly butterflied and laid on top of the square and all other ends stitched in.
Send the squares flat with the tails neatly wound on top of the square. Folded squares or rolled squares with the tails bound take a long time to flatten and sort.
Neaten the ends. Some squares arrive with the end just snipped off and this may lead to a blanket unravelling.
Be creative - it is lovely to include one creative square in each blanket among the plain jane squares, so if your mood is creative do send us embroidered or other creative squares if you feel like it. They add yet another dimension to our beautiful blankets. And please send brightest colours, even luminous, where possible. However, all squares will be used no matter what the colour. We totally understand that using up old yarn is a common situation. Here is a link to the challenges to help with your creative sparkle, please join in! http://forum.knit-a-square.com/forum/categories/challenges-1/listFo...
Please include a note with your name, address, email address and a list of the contents of the package.
Yarn - please use yarn (either wool, acrylic, bamboo or cotton) which is soft or softish to touch.
Square vests – please do not use the pattern from the website. The pattern will soon be removed and replaced with a Slip-Over pattern or a simple vest /tank top pattern, longer in body length.
Newborn items – sorry for the confusion in this regard. We most definitely DO want newborn items, but our current stock is unbalanced in favour of small items at the moment so before the coming winter it would help enormously helpful for us to receive items in the pre-school/creche (2-8 yr) age group bearing in mind that this is the age-group to which we have greatest access.
Slip-Overs - these garments should definitely be made in soft, yielding yarn as they are either warn directly against the skin or are stretched over other items for added warmth. They can be made thicker (with two strands of yarn) but perhaps then they should be knitted or crocheted on bigger needles. There are very specific instructions under the SLIP-OVER category on the forum.
Hats – at this point we need these items for children two years and older, again in line with our stock requirements going into winter. Please make sure that some of the hats are large enough to fit a two year old (proportionally a two year olds head is almost the size of an adult, so please keep that in mind when you are knitting/crocheting away!) – sizes medium and large preferred for the next few months.
Jerseys, cardigans, jumpers and baby clothes – again sorry for the confusion! Please keep sending these. We need them. Cardigans are perfectly acceptable in fact Ronda says “we love and adore these items”. As she explained, the very tiny sweaters as per the website pattern tend to have a high neckline which is not comfortable for very small babies. But “own” pattern items, specifically designed for infants are most welcome – plus bootees and mittens. We have a large collection of teeny beanies at this point.
We love these! Please keep knitting them. Here is a link to the knit-a-long that we had last year: http://allfororphans.com/kascuddleknit-a-long/
Please send all of these items to OUR knit-a-square address, here is the link to our postal instructions page: http://www.knit-a-square.com/postal.html
Please ensure that NO VALUE, NOT FOR COMMERCIAL USE and FOR CHARITY ONLY is placed on your custom labels and parcels. We have to pay a small mandatory handling fee on any box, so if your squares will fit, please send them in a package rather than a box.
Plastic rain ponchos - these are the most desired of all the 'slip-ins'. We will use every rain poncho sent for the children in the informal shack settlements. The rain comes in deluges and everyone in a shack would be saturated during a rain storm. The ponchos will be used during summer and winter to stay dry inside and outside.
Stationery - pencils, erasers, sharpeners and ball point pens are most welcome.
Toys – the toys go down an absolute treat as you would have seen from the photos on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Knitasquare . Please keep sending them!
As always KAS needs your donations, even just a small amount of money per month makes a big difference. Here is the link to our donations page. Every cent is used in South Africa to allow Ronda and our amazing volunteers to do the work that they are doing: http://www.knit-a-square.com/knit-a-square-donate.html
Two new projects:
The first one requires funds for Ronda to buy school shoes for Africa Ablaze. Africa Ablaze are currently running a rural school shoe appeal. We do not want shoes sent because they are too heavy, expensive and will definitely incur duty. However, funds donated to KAS can be used toward this appeal, so if you feel like giving some rural children school shoes, please donate here: http://www.knit-a-square.com/knit-a-square-donate.html
The other project we are working with is Aurora Schools project, which is to try and beat the Guinness Book of World Records largest hand-made blanket which is 2500 sq metres (MASSIVE) by Mandela Day THIS year! We have promised them knitting needles and double-knit, or other suitable yarns, to get them started in March. We are getting publicity through their effort and have also promised 250 - 400 blankets to fill in IF required on the day, and also we will help them lay out and cobble together (loosely) the 35-square blankets so that they may be UNcobbled afterwards and distributed. Therefore, knitting needles and yarn are greatly needed as well as plastic and steel wool-sewing needles! (Please send these items to the usual KAS address).
So there you are, the official 2012 wish list. Thank you all for your patience, and please remember, this is just a "wish list" a guideline for what makes our lives easier. It does not matter if you have not done these things, please still send the goods anyway they will all be used!
Just a thought – we are promised SUCH a cold winter here, if people want to pop just one undervest (singlet ?) and one pair of sox in each parcel they would be very welcome indeed.
I have about 6 vests in stock, but of course they sit here waiting for sufficient numbers to gather before I can distribute them.
The sox are flying out – they are extremely popular !
Again, sizes 3 – 10 yrs in all items are the most useful just now.
Just a little reminder for the kind people who purchase them please to remove any price tags or plastic clips - as Customs regards these a saleable products, and, therefore subject to Duty!
Replies are closed for this discussion.
I would also like to knit some socks.
Is there a pattern I can find here?
Hi Wendy, yes, everything is needed, this is just a guideline. It doesn't mean that we don't want other stuff. Thank you!
Just curious, why are the squares bundled into 50's?
Hi Rachel, they are easier to count that way and we try to deal in the 10 blanket lots which is 350 squares. So therefore seven piles of fifty.
Thanks, Kalai =)!
Thanks for posting this Kalai. Could you please clarify just how much the "mandatory handling fee" on boxes is???
I do not want to add to Ronda's expenses in SA, but in mailing from Canada, the cheapest way is in wine boxes (free) which measure total dimensions of not more than 90cm and weigh not more than 2 KG. This costs about $27 Can. and each box will hold 35-60 squares depending on thickness. To send in a package (do you mean large commercial envelopes?) would double or triple our mailing costs - by having to purchase the package and only being able to send fewer squares per package. Since we send such a large volume from St. Paul's, this really impacts how much fund raising I will have to do.
I have been trying to offset any handling costs by making a small monthly donation through Paypal, but it's probably not enough.... so if you could be more specific about the handling charge, it would be helpful.... perhaps an increased monthly donation is in order... it's probably cheaper than the cost of different packaging.
Hi Anne! Sillly question. What kind of wine box do you use? Thanks! :)
Our local liquor store puts unpacked wine and liquor boxes out for customers to take and they are popular for moving. They would have held a dozen bottles, I believe, I prefer the wine boxes - they are slightly lighter. Usually the boxes fall into the required 90 cm(HxWxD) dimensions required by Canada Post for the "small packet rate"
My favourite is the "Two Oceans" wine boxes that I sometimes get - only because it tickles my fancy to send squares in a box that originally came here from South Africa. Most any of the wine boxes will do... sometimes I have to beg and grovel to get them.
I line the box with a plastic garbage bag so that the squares are protected and Ronda can use the bag for packing up squares or blankets she is delivering..
Thanks Anne! That's what I thought. I'll have to look out for the Two Oceans. I love the idea too!
Ann, I have seen several suggestions for alternatives to bubble envelopes and boxes.
One (sorry can't remember who suggested it ) mentioned turning dry dog food or bird seed bags inside out and using them.
I've been using Mary Lokken's suggestion. It involves buying reusable shopping bags from the $ store, grocery store or pharmacy, then wrapping them in brown paper. I've found some cute ones at the $ store which I assume will be given out to use as carry bags after the squares are unpacked. They hold about 50-60 squares and are under the dimensions for mailing. This option involves $$ but might be cheaper than the handling fee.
That's a good idea, Linda..... but I can't help wondering.... if it's the same size and shape as a box, why isn't there a handling fee???? or is there???? I think we need some clarification here. Perhaps Kalai could check with Ronda...... if there's no handling fee on something just because it's 'envelope-shaped'..... or does the handling fee apply to anything that is 'box-shaped"