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.


GARMENTS

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.

KASCuddles

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


DUTY

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.


OTHER ITEMS

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!


DONATIONS

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!

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Replies to This Discussion

Good morning to you Yoke!  Please send the vests you have so lovingly made - nothing will go to waste!  

The tails : when a square is finished, please leave 50cm of yarn attached to the square - this 'tail' is used to sew the squares into the blankets.

Yes, we are certainly "all knitting with the same thread" - it is a lovely way of expressing what the members of KAS are doing!

Uniting the global knitting community is creating friendship and peace - plus we show the children of Africa matter to us, and, that we care.  

Do not be concerned about your lack of the English language, please make more comments on the Forum!

Thank you for this answer. I have a couple of the square vests made up and one of the ones with a ribbed yoke nearing completion. I won't make any more until you upload the new patterns section.

Meanwhile, I can make some blanket squares...

Hi, this may sound ridiculous but I've been leaving tails either end of my knitted squares - does one of them need sewing in and only one leaving to be butterflied up?

 

Sorry to sound dense!

Like all animals, just one 'tail' is needed Dee!   With our wholefood business we get asked an amazing range of questions, about food or health - therefore I know a 'eyebrow raising, jaw dropping' question when I see one.....

Yours is certainly not a ridiculous question, it is a practical and valid one - that will help guide anyone who has doubts.

Thank you for the revised list, Kalai! I've been busy with work so I'm a bit behind on the forum but this list helps out so much. I'm behind in my posting too - I have about 100 squares ready and waiting to be packed up. Photos to come after this weekend, hopefully! :o)

Thanks Andrea! 100 squares is awesome x x x

I have another question if anyone can believe that!  LOL

From the USA...is it cheaper to us Fed Ex or the US Postal Service???

I'm ready to mail today!~

Cathy,

It seems to be cheaper to use the USPS, but NOT the flat rate boxes; you can fit a lot more squares in your own, bigger box for the same price. It tends to cost around $0.80-$0.90 per square when you send a medium/big box.

Thank you Rachel for your information! 

I just got home from the post office and I was very frustrated!!!  There was a huge line, so I couldn't ask the clerk any questions regarding mailing cost. 

I did call UPS, and they wanted $450.00 to South Africa for under 5 pounds.  She told me to use the Post Office.  So, forget them!

Anyways, you mentioned 80-90 cents cost per square.  I CANNOT AFFORD THAT!  I have 60 squares right now and a vest! 

Another problem seems to be, you mentioned boxes!  I read they don't want boxes sent, but packages only! ???  I am very confused. 

So I came home with all my stuff, and will think about what I will do.  I'm VERY DISCOURAGED~

Dear Cathy,

Yes, the postage costs are a terrible shock, I'm afraid. I think the problem is that they don't do sea mail anymore =(. Here's some of the mailing data I've kept track of for me (And keep in mind that things like pencils and crayons, etc. tend to "fall in" while I'm packing my boxes; it must be my pesky children helping me ;-). ). I sent:

*A 3 pound 10 ounce bubble mailer envelope type thing for $28.68; it held 1 KAS cuddle, 5 hats, 11 squares, and 5 soft toys.

*A 6 pound, 14.4 ounce box for $56.10; it held 58 squares and 7 hats

*An 11 pound, 9.8 ounce box for $80.95; it held 83 squares, 6 hats, 1 slipover

For ME, it's cheaper per ounce to collect a large number of things and send a big box. I usually save any money I receive for birthdays or Christmas to help send my boxes.

They would PREFER packages instead of boxes if we can do it, but if it will be more expensive for us and we can't do it, they understand that too!

One thing you CAN do, if the postage costs are entirely out of the question, is to keep making things and save them. Twice in the past few years, a company in the states has offered to send our squares to South Africa for us, and it has made postage MUCH more manageable. When I sent an 11 pound, 15.8 ounce box to Jigsaw in California (they were the last company to offer to send our squares for a period of time that is now over) it was $9.80! Both times, we've only had a few months to take advantage of these wonderful offers, so having a box of stuff already made is very helpful when those offers come up.

If you click on my name or my picture and add me as a friend, I'll be happy to email you about all of this; it's a little easier than having to keep checking back to the discussions =)!

Hi Rachel and Cathy..... don't get discouraged.  I have just emailed Helen Flagg who sends hundreds of squares and other items from her church.  She probably knows more about mailing from the US to SA than anyone I know.  I have asked her to read your postings and wade in to the discussion... she may have some good suggestions for you.  Keep knitting!!!

Wow, suddenly postage from Australia to SA doesn't seem so bad...

I can post a parcel (I put my squares et al in zip lock bags and then wrap in plastic) for between $12 and $26 depending on the weight (500 grams or about 1 pound is $12 and 1.25 kilograms or about 2 and a 3/4 pounds is $26) via Seamail. I can fit about 20/25 squares in for 500 grams and obviously a lot more for 1.25 kilograms! (i.e. 35 squares plus usually a beanie or two and some slip ins as well).

I am glad Auspost still has Seamail, as the equivalent weights in Airmail are almost double for all parcel weights.

I cheat on my packaging though, I don't want to waste money paying for the weight of the packaging!  (I can squeeze in a few extra squares etc if I economize on the packaging). By wrapping in plastic the packaging only adds a few grams to the weight and I then wrap well with tape for protection against damage.

So far as I know all my parcels are getting through ok as I have seen about 14 of them acknowledged in the 'lists' so far.

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