POSTAL STRIKE in SOUTH AFRICA IS OVER !
The strike we reported in the February edition of KasSnippets is over, and we need members to hurry down to the post office and get all those squares and other goodies that have been cluttering up your home on their way to South Africa. This will give the various teams a chance to create the blankets to reach the children in time for the worst of the South African winter weather. Erin posted this comment on Facebook with regard the ending of the strike : There's a definite nip in the air already - I think we're in for a really cold winter this year. Please, please keep those parcels coming everyone! Thank you. Xxx
KAS PACKAGE INVENTORY FORM
Erica has created two brilliant downloadable forms to provide Ronda with an easy-to-read list of all the lovely squares and goodies that members post to South Africa. At the bottom of the form is a KAS address label which can be cut-off at taped to the outside of the parcel.
When the parcels and packages arrive in South Africa, the weekly opening session is a huge under-taking! So by using this form we can make life so much easier for Ronda and all the volunteers who turn up to help.
Do read Erica's discussion post for extra information and place any queries you may have on this page and Erica will provide guidance for anyone having difficulties. [Computer and software ageing can cause some issues.] One form is a pdf.file and the other Word.docx - they are positioned at the bottom of the discussion post on the left-hand side.
WHAT'S GOING ON IN SOUTH AFRICA?
Up date on Wandile, one of Ronda's staunchest opening day and distribution supporters. Wandi finally had the Lipoma operation on 14th March and was discharged 3 hours later. She was rather uncomfortable and extremely tired, but relieved it was over. The stitches were removed on 22nd and Wandi is starting feel much better! Hopefully she will back at the Thursday opening sessions when they re-start on 4th April.
From the Ruth Mailbag Newsletter: Saturday, 9 February 2013: Gifted to Isabelle Osethu Crèche (Daphne's crèche) 62 medium size beanies. Thank you Knit-a-square for these beautiful beanies, they have now all found forever homes. Bless you and thank you!
BHCC Letter : Another testament to the value of KAS and its members!
DISTRIBUTIONS & BLANKETS
Ronda reports that in December 2012 KAS supplied John Crane House with blankets so the former street children have a warm cover during the cooler months of the year. Wonderful progress! [See more pictures by clicking on the title above.]
Hotel Hope Orphanage - Family Re-united!
Many of you know that we have had a close supportive relationship with the work of the Hotel Hope Orphanage. Read this heart-warming story of how the HH team reunited a family and more pictures (with the parents agreement).
Treasure Boxes distribution
Lovely photographs of Treasure Box distribution just before Christmas 2012 ... thanks to our Knit-a-Square contributors, we managed to put together several boxes which were included with the total (cannot remember the number now, apologies for that !!!). Thanks to Annie, Marlese and others who ran the project, for these pics ... and for blessing the children in this way !!
KAS MONTHLY CHALLENGES
The March Challenge - The Four Seasons has brought out members love of flowers and nature! Do take a moment to look at Mary's Flickr Gallery of the photographs - 2 pages of beautiful squares and garments. Here are a few :
The Challenge for April is being lead by Laurie Fortier (Canada)
and the focus will be
The Sea, Seashore & Sea-shells Squares!
For further inspiration Google : Seashore + Images - there is a wide variety of colours, shapes etc to view!
Here is the list for the rest of the year for those of you who like to snap up bargain yarns in preparation! The list can be accessed on the Forum - Challenge Themes for 2013
TALLY or ITEM COUNT
The February Square Lists are ready for viewing.
Received in February : Squares 7,222 (206 blankets);
Tops 237 and Beanies 442
For further details go to the discussion page 2013 January & February Square List for more information.
Also to view photographs of opening day arrivals Sorted in South Africa !- well worth a look as you may some of your own!
APRIL PATTERN OF THE MONTH by Linda Maltby
Jan’s Block Stitch Square
In February, a member of our KAS family passed away.
Jan B. was an active and supportive member of the forum. We are saddened by the loss of such a wonderfully creative woman. Jan generously knit warm squares, cozy Cuddles and beautiful tops to provide comfort to the vulnerable and orphaned children.
We celebrate Jan’s contribution to KAS by featuring her
Block Stitch square pattern
April Pattern of the Month
This pattern creates a great, double thickness square in two colours, without all the confusion that you get with normal fair-isle.
This stitch pattern is very useful when trying to use a soft, "unstable" yarn such as chenille or thick short eyelash, which can easily stretch out of shape used on its own.
Using the soft yarn as the background yarn, and a plain yarn for the foreground, this pattern will produce a more stable fabric suitable for blanket squares.
Jan’s Block Stitch square is one of the many patterns to be found in the The KAS Pattern Book If you see another pattern you would like to try, please do! All garments and squares are appreciated.
As well as Jan B, we also lost Sue Gush of South Africa - Ronda mentioned that Sue was the first person in South Africa to send squares when KAS first started. Anne Powell has very kindly put together a discussion post for each of these wonderfully supportive ladies and for members to add their condolences : Jan B or Sue Gush. We will be sending them to their respective families to ensure they are aware of how much we valued their contribution to the development of KAS.
PATTERNS - DEVELOPMENT
Anne Powell (Canada), in her role as Forum Housekeeper has been sorted and arranged all the members patterns into a much needed rational & logical order! If you wish to check them out click on the various links :
We are also developing a 'KAS Square Measure' which will be added to the KAS Pattern Book as a downloadable item, or, for a donation a laminated copy will be posted direct. This will allow members to check their squares against a 8" square jig/template to ensure that the squares are square! This may sound a bit silly, but Ronda receives quite a few rectangles which really slows to down blanket stitching considerably. As you can imagine trying to sew too many odd sizes together can be a problem and we are hoping that members will find the measure easy as a quick and simple guide.
SPREADING THE WORD & GROUP DEVELOPMENT
Anne Powell (Canada) - Mission Sunday at KidZone
Anne was asked to do a presentation about KAS, on February 24, to our Sunday School.( Children aged five to 11)
Perhaps the kids’ favourite thing was planning blankets. I divided them into 4 teams, gave each team a bag of 35 squares which they laid out and arranged, and then all the teams visited the other blankets to admire them. The kids really loved seeing the squares and handling them.
Gitta Seyfert (member of the Stitch Witch Group - Jeffries Bay, South Africa)
gave a presentation at a Care Home in Humansdorp on 20th March about 15km from JB. They have 3 boxes of donated wool and think it is a good idea to get involved in knitting squares for The JBay Recycling Project for Children. The presentation was a huge success. An overwhelming 19 ladies and 1 gentleman will be knitting for us! The visit was such an amazing experience. There are some real needle artists in that group and one lady wrote down a beautiful old knitting pattern for a blanket :) We are going back there immediately to drop off whatever wool and knitting needles we have in stock at the moment.
The Stitch Witch Group have generated 2,000 squares since they started 5 months ago, and, this has created 57 blankets for the children's Swap Shop. The children collect recyclable material each week and they are given tokens to spend in the shop depending on the amount they have brought in. The shop contains a range of donated products from local people or businesses including food, books, clothes and shoes. Some children diligently save up their tokens to purchase a bicycle!
Maudie Bryan (Tasmania Island - Australia)
Maudie (centre) with Leni and Dorothy
The Bothwell International Highland Spin-in and Fibre Festival attracted exhibits and people from many states and from New Zealand and Japan. It was an amazing three day festival. Many people were very interested in KAS and comments came from "I have squares in a cupboard that my 98 year old mother knitted last year and now I know where to send them" to "Our church group would be very interested in this".
It was a good time for sales and Spreading the Word with the ladies from the Triabunna Village - the same people who organised the France to Freycinet Festival last year. Leni and Dorothy were selling my books today as I had to leave also selling felted items and jewellery and finely woven scarves, and paintings from Tennant Creek in the Northern Territory of Australia, and the famous Tasmanian native timber boxes.
I also made contact with a lady who wants to sell Wool-Girl later in the year and another who grows ethical wool and has it spun into yarn in New Zealand. Some of her wool will be going to South Africa with a Koala made from Tasmanian Wool fleece as an add-on.
Valerie Zalewski's Spreading the Word in my corner of France is continuing to make progress. Valerie has made a number of updates to her discussion post since we first mentioned her efforts in the January edition of KasSnippets.
Donations of tapestry yarn Valerie received from a retired French weaver.
Good news...Valerie had a call from a French lady. Someone had posted a message about KAS in her local parish magazine and she wants to knit squares and hats. As she's not computerised, I'll mail her the pattern translations that I've done so far.
[Valerie has also been busy turning the KAS Pattern Book patterns into French, has now linked up with Isabelle to further this project.]
SQUARE HEART OF THE MONTH AWARD
Edited by Mary Kristel Lokken
The March Square Heart of the month Award has gone to
Maria Teresa Cleasby (Leicestershire, UK)
Maria Teresa, or MT as she likes to be called, joined the forum in May 2012, and in this short time has brought amazingly creative and attractive contributions to KAS. We found out where the creativity and also the practicality came from when MT shared the following phrase on the forum: “I was an haute couture designer (about three 'incarnations' ago eheheheh), so patterning is part of my baggage.”
As well as being an active member of the Forum, Maria is always praising and encouraging others in their efforts.
To view more Maria's work please Click here
KAS EVENTS Yours Live 2013 - Skegness (UK)
As usual this was a great success - we aimed to beat our total of 350 squares in 2 days in 2012, and, the kind hearted readers of Yours Magazine produced an astonishing 1,015 squares, enough for 29 blankets! Admittedly some people had been knitting during the year and brought them with them!
Carol Playford, Pam Johnson, Elaine Jones and Pam Antink attended the event to represent KAS and our reports and photographs, along with Forum comments are now completed and ready for viewing!
KAS FACEBOOK PAGE
We received an additional 128 Likes on the Facebook page during March taking our total to 5,475! We also copy the messages etc received on Facebook to the Forum for anyone who is not a member of FB.
Prince Harry returns to Lesotho for charity projects
Lesotho is a small country surrounded by South Africa and has the same issues.
Harry set up the Sentebale charity to support orphans and vulnerable children in Lesotho seven years ago to support vulnerable children affected by HIV/Aids, working with the brother of Lesotho's king.. Harry last visited Lesotho in 2010 when he took his brother, the Duke of Cambridge, to see Sentebale's work.
During this visit he attended a gala fund-raising dinner for his charity, in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Prince Harry's charity Sentebale, which means "forget me not", works with local communities at grassroots level. He visited a centre for the deaf near the capital Maseru then to a school for visually impaired children.
Here is the link to the Sentebale Website to read more about.
Couldn't resist this cartoon - many of our members and their stashes seem to almost fall into this category!
To view one of the largest stashes we have ever seen on the Forum please visit Yarnaholics - several other members have owned up to having shop size stashes! Also many KasFolk have divulged their 'secret' hiding places in order to prevent their other half discovering just how much is being spent on yarn!
THANK YOU! THANK YOU! for a wonderfully presented and very informative KAS snippets, Pam. I can only imagine the amount of time and effort required to 'pull this all together'.
I loved your cartoon at the end.....hilarious!!
Thanks Pam! My favourite day of the KASmonth is the day the new edition of KasSnippets arrives in my Inbox!
Thanks Pam. Love having all the latest news in one place.
Good news about the strike finishing, I will post my collection asap. I wondered if there was any other fellow knitter or group in the Birmingham,UK area - perhaps we can join forces.
LOVELY report, thanks so much Pam.
I enjoyed seeing that photograph from just over 4 years ago, when I was excited to have received 29 parcels in one postal delivery and wrote, "it's RAINING squares ..." !! Postal strikes notwithstanding, we are happy to say that even the word, "TSUNAMI" would not adequately describe the increase in volumes of KAS post.
How wonderfully GENEROUS everyone has been - as always, we thank each and every ONE of our amazing contributors !!!
Truly excellent edition of KAS snippets, Pam - thank you so much for all this wonderful information. Hearing about the distributions going on in South Africa is so very motivating and it's inspiring to hear about the events to promote KAS going on around the world.
Thank you, Pam! What a great way to catch up on everything that is going on, in South Africa and elsewhere.
Thank you so much Pam for this wonderful edition of the KAS snippets. It gives so much information, I really appreciate that. I second Bev re the cartoon: indeed, hilarious! And what about Yarnaholics!!! Unbelievable, although, it has one advantage: the walls in the house are isolated by wool, so no cold Winter for "Yarna" !!!
I have just looked through the photos of the four seasons squares and am completely bowled over! How absolutely stunningly amazing they are! wow! You're also clever! And those colours!
Thank you team Pam for a great update. It is important work . there is darling Rhonda squishing love into her little car still when I had so wished to have helped her buy a little van by now . xxx Maudie
THANK YOU for another amazing KAS Snippets. Love all the news and the end cartoon. Bless!