Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Yarn Stores are THE BEST!

Hi Everyone!

As knitters and crocheters you probably spend a lot of time in yarn stores and no doubt have your favourites - probably more than a few! At Warm Hands, we love yarn stores too.  Today, I'd like to share with you a great story of a wonderful yarn store, Wet Coast Wools in Vancouver, that held a very special event for the Warm Hands Network at the end of November.  Glenda, the owner of Wet Coast, sent us this write-up of the event, below, so I will let you tell you in her own words all about the magic that took place!

Wet Coast Wools is a yarn store located in the Kitsilano neighbourhood of Vancouver, BC. We have been fans of the Warm Hands Network for many years, and particularly like that the donated items can be made from 100% wool.  Kelsey and I have personally donated items in the past, but decided we wanted to do a more formal campaign to bring awareness to this great organization, as well as to collect donation items.

We decided to hold a 12-hour Knit-In on Black Friday weekend, to help get people into the spirit of the holiday season. We advertised the event at our store beginning in late October and discussed it on our Wet Coast Wools Podcast (available on YouTube). One of our viewers, Victoria, is manager of the Starbucks at Oakridge Mall in Vancouver; she heard about our Knit-In and very kindly arranged for Starbucks to provide us with a large carafe of coffee for the event. Kelsey baked cookies and cupcakes, and several other knitters also brought snacks and treats. We would not be short of energy for this event!

Doors opened at 9am on November 30th, with four knitters showing up almost right away.
 By mid-day, we were up to 20 knitters spread over two seating areas – as one person would leave, another would show up to take their place. Many of our knitters were regular customers, but we also welcomed numerous people who don’t typically attend our weekly knitting groups. Everyone was busily working away on their items, catching up with friends, and making new ones along the way.  In addition to the "in-house" knitters, we had dozens of people who stopped in to contribute their knitted items.
 Our initial goal for the Knit-In was 100 items. A week before the event, we had already collected 37 items, so it only made sense to increase our goal to 150 items.  Half-way through our Knit-In, we were up to 123! With each item, we added a piece to the mittens on our poster, tracking our progress throughout the day.
As 7pm rolled around, we were 4 items short of our goal, and trying to knit faster to see if we could make it. We had 5 knitters left, 2 of whom had been there since early that morning. Just in time, a new knitter arrived with 5 items to contribute. Success – we had reached 151 items!  With the pressure off, Kelsey and I used the last hour of the Knit-In to organize the items by type and lay them out for photographs.

A few more items arrived in the days following our Knit-In, mostly from people who didn’t quite have time to finish their projects on Saturday. We sealed up the boxes with 170 items (about 25 pounds) in total!

Dark sky stripes 
Our Knit-In was a great success, and we are so happy to be able to contribute these items to the Warm Hands Network.  We hope that the items will all find happy homes, and that they will bring warmth and comfort to their recipients.

Glenda, Kelsey, and the crew from Wet Coast Wools

Glenda and Kelsey: we can't thank you enough for your energy, enthusiasm and generosity in taking the time to plan and deliver this wonderful event.  And please pass on to all your knitters and crafters our thanks for their time and thoughtfulness in making and donating so many lovely garments and warm accessories.  I love that you transformed Black Friday - often a day of over the top consumerism - into a day of community-building and sharing.  Thank you all!!

1 comment:

Karen Zorn said...

This is fantastic! I mailed out some mittens and a couple pairs of socks today, not sure they will get there by the 20th, though. Its all I had time to make so hoping next year will allow for more knitting time.

Karen Z.