Okay I'll save you all the obligatory Happy New Year, Auld Lang Syne bit, and go right to the what's going to be happening on the blog. Cutting directly to the chase, I want to announce a new feature on the blog. I think all of you will appreciate. (I hope anyways)
A while back I wrote about the beautiful pattern written by Amy Brewer and Doug Speeckaert cooperative effort on the "Meandering Paws Over the Rainbow Bridge" afghan. (an tribute to our furry friends who have passed over the Rainbow Bridge) Amy continues to inspire me through her work and personal comments on my Facebook page. She is incredibly thoughtful and kind. Since writing that blog however, I have had the opportunity to get to familiarize myself with Doug's work through Instagram. The quality and the quantity of Doug's crocheting is stunning. Not only is he a crocheter extraordinaire but a fine gentleman as well.
While reading through my Instagram feed one day I ran across an afghan that Doug crocheted that very much reminded me of one my Grandmother had in her home. One of those timeless, but not trendy, pieces you know will contain a lifetime of memories in each stitch. I have to say so many beautiful memories came flooding back. That one visual sort of began an idea percolating in my brain. (that happens from time to time. LOL) I have a large assortment of vintage fiber arts magazines that have been given to me by friends and family over the years. They are SO cool! I thought, for variety, I might tap into a trend highlighted in one of those magazines, share some relevant tips or tricks, or look into the past charitable work of knitters, crocheters, and sewists. These vintage magazines are really a treasure trove of ideas and encouragement.
I will continue to do Unallied Artist and the Charity Idea OUTpost features however, I think these "Classics in the Parc" blog posts will appear randomly throughout the year lending a new dimension to the blog. Perhaps sparking new ideas that feature classical fiber arts elements. I hope that all of you will enjoy the writing and pictures included with these blog postings. I simply cannot do the blog posts about these vintage magazines without adding the occasional picture.
I know for some, the articles, patterns, ideas, and photos will hold memories. I have wonderful memories of my grandmothers and aunts knitting or crocheting away at projects while chatting about the latest in our lives. These will always be cherished memories and the inspiration for what I do today. I hope I make my family proud.
The past, the present, and the future here on Out of the Parc Designs Blog in 2018. I hope you'll join me, my daughter, and perhaps some guest writers this year on Out of the Parc Designs. Thank you all for a wonderful 2017!
This year has been an amazing year for this blog! I just wanted to take the time to personally thank all of you who have taken the time to read the blog week in and week out. I'm always and forever grateful for your support, kindness, and for all the thoughtful comments you post to the blog.
I need to thank all the extraordinary fiber artists that stop by my little corner of the blogosphere to read what I have to share. Most of you leave me in the shade when it comes to your artistic ability. I am humbled by your generosity. You are truly amazing people.
I first started writing this blog nearly 2 years ago! I have been privileged to meet wonderful people through this blog, and this has made the holidays even brighter. To all of you, all around the world HAPPY HOLIDAYS!
With much love, Lyn Bennett Wilson.
I thought I would share the gift I received from my son. Every year my son plants a garden, adding a new plant or two, I photograph the plants including the pollinators. Now, I hope this works LOL.
Today, I wanted to write about something a bit more personal. This season can be quite difficult for many people. The statistics bear out that fact. The reasons for this fact are less important than the idea that we as fiber artists can do something to comfort people in our sphere of influence where appropriate.
We will all have personal friends who will struggle this holiday season. The reasons will be as diverse as the people. Then there are the people you consider acquaintances or those who you might see about your daily lives just to say hello. As people who participate in charity work (usually many different charities) we tend to notice when a person within our circles is having a difficult time. When appropriate we can shine just a little handmade love into their lives.
I thought I would keep the comments to a minimum and simply list project ideas broken down by ages and gender. (man, woman, kids). You'll have your own reasons for making a special gift, I hope these links will help you.
Collections; a little something for everyone:
Collections for Men:
Collections for women:
Collections for kids:
I hope that this blog post helps spark some ideas of your own. I know many of you have given already, as I can attest from Northern Adirondack Hats for Hope Initiative. If you are looking for a place to give you might check One Simple Wish (money only) and Together We Rise. Both groups providing for Foster children who often times live with their possessions in a large plastic garbage bag. Check with social services to ask about emergency shelters and special projects collecting gifts for the underserved in your own community. Thank you for being willing to share your time with me, and with the world.
Many people are familiar with the Samaritan's Purse Shoebox Gift project that provides thousands of children with Christmas gifts every year. It is a great charity outreach with which my family has participated for several years. However, I have seen many churches, civic groups, individuals, and businesses take this idea and adapt it for other charitable purposes. Including giving Christmas gifts to foster children and children of military families. They are also a great way to help families who face the trauma of losing their home, and not just at Christmas. Giving year round is an idea that is promoted by Samaritan's Purse. In my experience DIYers, are particularly adept at finding ways to give comfort. Combining the nearly limitless talents of Makers/DIYers with a box gift seemed like a fantastic idea.
Today's blog will not be limited to fiber artists. Many talents can be used to make this memory box idea work for many different emergency situations. Like most people, my family and I have been through difficult situations like hurricanes, a house fire, floods ect.. These are trying times during which people need all the support they can get. Emergencies tend to bring out the best in people because our neighborhood isn't just a collection of houses, it's a collection of human beings. Having a gifting box or two on hand for emergencies creates a sense of hope for both the giver and the one receiving.
When I was shopping on Michael's Stores online a couple of days ago I noticed that they had Memory Boxes on sale for $2.99. Very attractively decorated boxes with a metal label holder on the front of each box. I thought what a cool storage box and then the idea dawned on me that they would make good boxes for emergency gifting. Moreover, the boxes are available many places and can be purchased on sale or with a coupon making it easier to gift beautifully! The label holder helps keep the gift boxes organized. The box itself makes a lovely reusable gift in of itself.
These memory gift boxes are great projects to do with friends. Whether it's your scrapbooking club (in that case you probably have some of these memory boxes already) or you and your BFF this project is great for building stronger friendships. Encouraging even very young children to join in this type of project teaches giving isn't limited to birthdays and Christmas. (Kids love to give!) So many more positives! If you've ever faced an emergency you know what it means to have someone think of you in those moments. I'm going to use the memory gift box as my model because they are pretty readily available to us.
DIYers have so many options. Just think about what you would like to receive yourself during an emergency. Something comforting, something distracting, something to help you feel special? All of the above? If you work on this project with a group of friends or family the ideas will probably far out number the boxes LOL. Breaking it down by age, as they do for Samaritan's Purse, let's take a look at some DIY projects.
Children age 2-4:
Children ages 5-9:
These DIYers Memory Gift Boxes are sure to help alleviate some stress. I am never very good at visiting people in an emergency without something in hand to bring comfort. I like this memory box idea because it can be a GOOD memory from those who really care. Thank you for reading the blog today. Thankyou also, for caring for others.
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**Opinions expressed on blogs about which I write are the opinion of the blog authors and DO NOT necessarily reflect my own opinion.