There's nothing like the winter months to make you think about how hard living on the streets must be. This year, the onset of the cold weather and a Big Issue tweet prompted us into taking action. As keen crafters with a recent foray into knitting, the Big Knitathon seemed a great way to exercise our new found (yet fairly primitive skills) and do our bit to raise funds for Big Issue vendors.
After the initial excitement of agreeing to undertake a month of knitting, reality and fear started to creep in as to whether we would even be able to remember how to cast on let alone produce finished 'sale-able' items. Furthermore, what if we were flooded with orders and could not meet the demand?
The first round of emails was met with just one positive response which didn't seem like a very promising start, however orders slowly began to trickle in and before long an online spreadsheet was created to keep track and to make sure the workload was spread evenly.
Facebook also turned out to be a useful tool to promote our fundraising efforts amongst our friends and families. As the hats, slippers and dish cloths made their way out to our donors, word seemed to spread. We had never dreamed we would reach £1000 but as the weeks passed it seemed to be more and more within our grasp.
Towards the end of November we made our last final push for orders with Louise sending another email and Claudine advertising colourful Toefloofs (her soon to be trademarked name for the slippers) on facebook, which created a flurry of international orders.
After one person requested a bobble hat from Sally's stables, by the end of the month every single head had been furnished with a brand new woolly hat, just in time for storms Abigail, Barney, Clodagh and Desmond.
We found every free minute was taken up with knitting and the more we did it the more our passion for knitting was re-ignited. It was brilliant how much our nearest and dearest embraced our knitted goods and we were able to witness first hand the joy and warmth that handmade goods can give to others. We hope the money raised will go a little way to bring warmth to others.
Sally, Louise and Claudine