Charity begins at home…will you play your part?



I’ve really had my eyes opened by all the recent press on the refugee crisis – I felt ashamed by my ignorance, not just of the situation but of the political background to it. I’ve been on an extensive learning curve, to say the least!

I wondered what I could do, aside from simply donating money.

I thought long and hard, then I found this wonderful charity:


These amazing guys are an initiative of the Charities Advisory Trust, which has been in action since 1979.
They distribute knit and crochet goods directly to where they are needed (rather than selling them for usually far less than they are ‘worth’) to over 80 centres, helping
women refuges,
prisons, refugees
developing countries.

Take a peek at the great work they do. 

I wanted to help.

I wanted to give a little of myself.

I had a blanket design that I had been pondering over for a while, and it seemed fitting to ‘gift’ it to them. I know, they are called Knit for Peace, but they do accept crocheted items too – they just didn’t have any free patterns on their website, so I created one just for them!



Levamentum is Latin for relief, comfort and solace – and also means unbending. It was the perfect name.
The blanket will provide comfort and solace to those who need help, and sometimes those who provide help need to be unbending in the face of opposition or political pressure.
It’s quick to work up – consisting of trebles worked in the back loop only on each row, which creates a ridged and reversible texture.
You can use your stash and any weight – full instructions are given – so it’s a perfect charity crochet.

Of course, you can also make one to keep – they are rather addictive to work up!

Click here to download

Please let me know if you are making a Levamentum Blanket – I’d love to hear from you, either in the comments or via the contact me page!

For those of you on Ravelry, if you could post a project too it would be awesome – if more people can see it, more people can make it and more people will benefit.

Click here for the Ravelry library page.

Share the love!

With love,





Knit therapy

And relaaaaaax…

I find knitting and crochet incredibly soothing. Knit classes should be available on the NHS, as it is cheaper than medication or therapy – although possibly more addictive! While I learnt to knit and crochet as a child, I only took them up seriously later in life as a form of stress relief in my former career, and I am so glad I did – I haven’t looked back! It is the only real activity, other than reading (or playing guitar, badly), that helps me to completely tune out and lose myself. I suppose it’s a form of mindfulness, although more on that another day. It doesn’t matter what I am doing – if my day has been particularly mundane, it is wonderful to fall headfirst into a complex lace pattern, requiring intense concentration and silence. If my day has been busy and I just want to veg (or I am feeling under the weather, physically or emotionally) then something basic does the trick just as well – plus you can watch a film at the same time. Bargain!
I haven’t been particularly well of late and as a result had lost my knitting mojo. I was worried. I was still just as stressed, but without knitting I had no other way to unwind. I knew that I had to knit to get my mojo back, but how? And with what?

Easy knits

I turned to an old friend, the garter stitch. There was a time when I (wrongly) thought little of the humble garter stitch, but it is such a lifesaver and I really love the simplicity and the resulting squishiness! For some yarns, garter stitch is a great way to go. I love those little resulting ‘pops’ of colour. So, to get me back on the knitting path, I needed just plain knit. I picked the very popular (and fun!) ten stitch blanket by Frankie Brown, but made a couple of alterations. I worked on 20 sts, as I knew that I didn’t want to be turning every ten stitches (or knitting backwards, as I tend to do on short row sections) and I added a slip stitch join to get a lovely box-spiral ridge. While working on it, if I dared to put it down for a second, my gorgeous Tibetan Terrier would run to sit on it and claim it as his own. Luckily, I tend to work all my knitting on circs, otherwise he could have done himself an injury! I knew that it was never going to be the prettiest blanket, because all the balls were different, but the aim was just to get me back on track. So with no other intended recipient, it rapidly became ‘Bilko’s Blanket’.  When I finished, I added a 5st applied i-cord edging, just to make it that little bit more substantial. It goes everywhere with him!

My little stinky fella is pooped after a long walk so I couldn’t tear him away from his blankie long enough to get a photo of it on its own (and he loves to play to the camera anyway!), so this shot will have to do for now.

Not that I don’t have a million and one other projects on the go, but once Bilko’s Blanket had been cast off, I needed another garter stitch saviour, and so  began the ‘Curious Case of the Log Cabin‘.

Oh, happy day – I was hooked again!

pw x