At the beginning of the year I announced that I was going to start a charity crochet project with the goal of donating handmade crochet items to a different organization each month during every month this year. Here’s the first month’s update.

January Donor Organization

The organization I chose for the month of January was Bridge and Beyond. I posted earlier this month about why I chose them.

What I Made

To be honest, I’m a little embarrassed that I didn’t do better in handcrafting more items for donation to this organization. I’ve made two pairs of mittens and am almost done making a very large, very warm scarf. I wanted to have a bigger donation but by the time I got started and got going there just wasn’t a lot of time to make stuff. The goal I set mid-month was “to try to make at least one pair of mittens for donation. I will also be making at least two hats and several scarves.” No hats and only one scarf. On the plus side, I had never made mittens before and I feel like they came out really well so I’m happy with that. And I love the texture on the scarf. Plus it’s better to do something than nothing right?

What’s Next?

I’ll be finishing up this donation in the next few days and putting it in the mail next week. (In addition to finishing the scarf, I need to add thumbs to one of the mitten pairs and weave in all ends). Then it’ll be time to start working on February’s donation. I’ll be doing my mid-month update on the second Sunday of February, which is when I’ll set my specific plans and share more about the month’s chosen organization.

Some Things I’ve Learned

I loved the idea of doing this monthly charity crocheting. And I think it’s a good thing and intend to stick with it. But I’ll be honest in saying that I’ve learned a few things that have dampened my enthusiasm slightly:

  • I’m not a very generous crocheter after all. I noticed that I tended to feel a slight bit of resentment when making crochet items for others. I wanted to be using that time and energy and creativity to make something for myself. I’m a little embarrassed by this and almost didn’t want to admit it on the blog but I felt like I should be honest about it because that’s the truth of what’s really going on as I do this. Many people I know are very generous crocheters who almost never make anything for themselves. I am the opposite. I mostly make for myself. I don’t want to be un-generous so this is just something I’m going to pay attention to and learn from as I continue on with the charity crafting. I’m sure I’ll have more to say about it as time goes on.
  • I’m a sloppy crocheter. This isn’t really a new revelation for me. I’m an impatient crafter. I don’t always make sure that I have neat stitches. I don’t like to make a bunch of color changes. I’ve learned lots of adaptations when making things for myself. However, when I make something for someone else I want to give it the care it deserves. And the truth is, I don’t like having to be so careful in my work so I don’t end up enjoying the process quite as much. Honestly, I’m starting to think that I’m more interested in art crochet and crocheting for my own wearable enjoyment than any other crochet. We’ll see.
  • I don’t own easy care yarn. My January donations are going to homeless people so of course they need to be easy care. In fact, most items that you donate should be easy care. I didn’t realize until I started crocheting for charity this month that I really don’t own this type of yarn. I like luxury yarns and those almost always require hand washing. My go-to workhorse yarn is Paton’s Silk Bamboo which is a silk bamboo blend. I do have some acrylics but they’re mostly novelty yarns and wouldn’t have been practical choices for the donation items. I had four skeins of Lion Brand’s Wool-Ease for the scarf but now I’m out of any kind of easy-wash wool like that. So I’m not sure what that means as I move forward. Something to figure out.

Join Me

At the beginning of this project I invited others to join me in doing 12 in ’12. I tried to use a linky tool so everyone could share their work. However, it doesn’t seem to want to work on this blog. So here’s the deal … if you made a crochet donation to charity in the month of January and you blogged about it, send me the link to that post via email and I will add it here (below). You don’t have to be someone who committed to doing 12 in ’12. Anyone who did charity crochet can send me their link. But I ask that you follow these basic rules:

  • Send me the direct link to the post about the donation.
  • One link only per blog per month.
  • At least some of the items you donated must be crochet.

Crochet Others Donated

I’d love to know what you have learned about yourself and your stash from doing charity crochet work. Am I the only selfish crafter out there?


San Francisco based and crochet-obsessed writer, dreamer and creative spirit!


  1. undergroundcrafter Reply

    These are all great revelations. I’m a pretty generous crafter – I mostly make gifts for other people and charity projects (or samples for patterns I’m publishing) – but I also feel resentment when making projects for others! Join the club LOL.

    • CrochetBlogger Reply

      @undergroundcrafter Thanks Marie! I definitely consider you a generous crafter so it’s good to know that you experience some of these feelings as well!

  2. momwithahook Reply

    Funny you say that about being a selfish crafter. I always feel bad about using my less than perfect yarn for donations. i.e. the iky acrylic yarn. I know acrylic is the preferred yarn for wash and care but I still feel bad about using it.

    • CrochetBlogger Reply

      @momwithahook I’m glad to know that I’m not the only one who feels bad but then still uses it.

  3. Congrats on donating! I’m sure it will be greatly appreciated even if you feel you’re a sloppy crocheter.

  4. Congrats on donating! I’m sure it will be greatly appreciated even if you feel you’re a sloppy crocheter.

    • CrochetBlogger Reply

      @changejars Thanks! Having the support from you guys helps me be more motivated to donate my crochet!

  5. WOW !! that honesty struck home with me… I am not a “generous”hook-er myself…. all that you said is sooooooooo spot on. Red heart is cheap though,(budget-wise no digs red heart luv ‘ya) go and get a few skeins in happy colors and go for it “K” the work you do is very important,so feel good and Right about it…save your lovelys for your self . I have a whole tote of Just-4-Me yarn. thank you for bringing to word what I was ashamed to say out loud…ahhhh mind-ful growth…….

    • CrochetBlogger Reply

      @65mary65 Thanks for also admitting to this Mary. I felt like I was the only one who wasn’t feeling generous and giving as I crafted for charity but now I know that this is something that other people struggle with as well. I definitely plan to keep my eye out for the more affordable yarn brands like Red Heart to use in crafting. I also like Caron’s Simply Soft which is affordable too.

  6. susanbsnippy Reply

    I donate crocheted items only once a year and make sure it is to a local charity. We have a christmas bureau and food bank in my town so each year in November I take all the scarfs, hats, and other items which includes tote bags and baby afghans over to their facilities. All the things i make, are made from acrylic yarns, and all of those yarns I purchase through thrift shops. I think the idea of using acrylic yarns bought 2nd hand is what keeps me from feeling any sort of resentment of giving! The outlay for the items becomes less its actual cost than the time i spend on the things I give. Also because it is given locally, there is no postage cost and when I take a huge box of things once a year it looks like I am contributing a bonanza! to those in need. It really does make be feel GOOD about what I do and amazingly, i have occasionally seen my handywork on young homeless men and that really gives me a smile! This year, I even got a thank-you note from a young mother (she gave the note to a volunteer at the christmas bureau who then passed it on to me). I have put that note in a plastic sleeve and taped it on the wall by my “crocheting and tv watching” chair – it is an excellent motivator!

    • CrochetBlogger Reply

      @susanbsnippy Thanks so much for sharing your story about donating. It makes me feel really enthused about the whole donation process and how much it truly can help me. A few of the charities I’ll be giving to this month will be local and I think it will be good to get that sense that I’m really helping out my community in a tangible way.

      I also like your idea of just doing a donation once or twice per year. That’s what I do with the random things around the house that I no longer need. I toss them into bags throughout the year and take them for donation once or twice. So that makes sense for donating crochet too.

  7. Thank you for response,learning to like (or vice-versa) this new way of communicating.. Yes: Carons is great… I have lived in some , oh to heck with all the silly long words…. I Have been HOMELESS… NO ONE, NO WAY, NO WHERE. ABSOLUTE BLACK!!! With no light at the end of the tunnel……no phone NO NOTHING…So all that said. A small simple JOY is ones OWN washcloth… a simple easy thing ….no one can take it away from you. yes we all want warmth. we also want some small root… Cotton fiber is cheap color-ful easy care …… great practice for motifs etc… Get Crazy and add a pocket to hold a bar of good (take-me-Away) smell good soap….. oops sorry “bout high horse.. just read Huffpost ….. lots of chains from Tuscaloosa al.

  8. ps that “cheap” yarn makes Great washcloths……Hey anybody out there ever needed/wanted a “hankie” and not had a way to dry your tears or blow your nose?????

  9. I Promise I will stop after this. Feet like hands deserve LOVE no matter where or why. so check out the granny square slipper pattern at purl-bee. (link at Crochetbug) Easy to do…Hope I got all this right… Kathryn correct my OOpsys, please… sometimes we walk a LONG ways…our feet need a rest,no matter where our heads may lie…No socks,No (extra pair of) shoes, NO PROBLEM!!!! plus they pack small and are again OURS…might not own a house or car but I own these……… “nite ya’ll till tomorrow Grateful in Tuscaloosa AL

    • CrochetBlogger Reply

      @65mary65 Thanks Mary. You don’t have to stop your comments at all. The information that you add to the site is really useful for others and we’re happy to hear your thoughts on all of these things!

      I believe the link that you wanted to add in the post is

  10. Yes that is the link.. all this has inspired me make up some kind of “packs” scarf cap slippers etc.. maybe in a little crochet shower bag thingy.. Those are also a useful item for keeping personal things together.soap shampoo etc. A gal I met in a shelter made us “ladies” some.they were much loved….still have mine…. Dear “K” I think -(KNOW) that you have started a good “chainy” thing with me.Thank you. Now I can feel better about the “just-4-me” things I create…. ps thanxs for hooking up with cates blog. isn’t she cool? gotta’ nurture those chains.Peace from Alabama

    • CrochetBlogger Reply

      @65mary65 Oh Mary, I’m so glad. it is wonderful that you have the chance to give back now that you’re in a better position yourself. Do keep me posted on your donations!

  11. I am “old” school. “what goes around comes around”. “Give and ‘ye shall recieve”. ” The circle of Life” some time just plain old Karma.. I have seen it in action and (4-me) know it to be True……For all that Heavy thinking hope it is sunny in San Fran. cuz it is cloudy in alabama….

    • CrochetBlogger Reply

      @65mary65 Yep, nice and sunny here. :) But when you guys have a warm sunny summer we’ll be putting on jackets.

  12. wow, at least to me…ok add all this up, the symbol for infinity (sideways 8) a crochet chain one or more, a plain old circle….Plus I am sure there are a lot more “symbols” for giving and recieving Words also… they escape me at the moment. just thinking out loud in between loads of UGGG Laundry… this is more fun than talking out loud to myself. admit it we all do it.LOL

  13. Pingback: Crochet Blog Roundup: January 2012 — Crochet Concupiscence

Write A Comment