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|Getting Started: Guidelines and Address|
Get involved. Your knitted or crocheted creation will directly help an Afghan woman, man, or child who greatly needs the caring, warm embrace of your personal, handmade gift.
Tips for knitting or crocheting for the afghans for Afghans project
Size depends on specific campaign needs. Please read campaign guidelines.
Feel free to use the colors that inspire you. The gift of a bright, cheerful afghan or garment will have a tremendous impact on those who have little if any possessions. Consider using some shade of the color green -- . green is the beloved color of Islam. Avoid white or light yarn colors since they are difficult to keep clean. Please don't use camouflage yarn (military).
Please use wool and other animal fibers (such as mohair and alpaca) and wool blends that offer the most warmth and durability in harsh conditions. Acrylic items will not be sent to Afghanistan. Avoid delicate fibers such as some silks and novelty yarns. More notes on fiber here.
Yarn and craft stores have plenty of yarns to choose from. Take a look through the sale bins. Let your favorite yarn shop know that you are knitting and crocheting for an Afghan family, and consider asking for a donation of wool yarn or a good discount. They may be happy to help.
Before you hit the stores ... this is that long-awaited opportunity to put your huge yarn stash to superb use. Raid your own yarn supply and use up those odds and ends. Don't be shy about searching for yarn -- ask friends to give you their extra wool yarn that's just sitting around; they'll no doubt be delighted to share for such a worthy purpose. Resourceful yarn hunters have also been known to discover inexpensive yarn at thrift stores (check for moths and eggs of course!) and online.
Pattern and design
Knit or crochet your favorite pattern or try something new -- you have plenty of latitude to select the design. A few
1) Do not incorporate representational images such as faces and animals
in your design -- Islam
prohibits depicting such likenesses.
2) Do not incorporate religious or national symbols.
3) Avoid lacy stitches that do not insulate sufficiently.
Here are selected links to free online patterns suggested by volunteers. Or, use your own favorite patterns.
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Current Campaign completed Sept 8., 2014 -- WOOL hats, mittens, and socks (knit only), for 7 years to adult, according to these guidelines here for distribution in Afghanistan this winter. Please check back for new campaign. Thank you!
Please use 100% wool or mostly wool (or other durable, warm animal fiber) to provide maximum utility in harsh weather. More notes on wool here.
afghans for Afghans
Thanks to the good work of afghans for Afghans' local sorting and packing volunteers, the American Friends Service Committee in San Francisco, and other experienced agency partners, your handmade wool gifts will be securely packaged and transported and distributed to those in need.
Please tie mittens and socks together with a safety pin or piece of yarn so that pairs stay intact.
When you mail your wool gifts, please email us (afghans4Afghans at aol dot com) with your name, city, and state -- we'd like to keep track of the generosity. You will be acknowledged by email.
If you need confirmation that we have received your package, please use the signature request services of USPS, UPS, or other delivery agents. Or, enclose a self-addressed stamped postcard or envelope that we will mail back to you.
Questions? Email us at afghans4Afghans at aol dot com.
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