67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela celebrates his Centennial Birthday with Donations at the Capital 

The cold weather seemed to cooperate on Dec 5th 2017 as 67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela Day commemorated the 4th anniversary of Nelson Mandela’s passing. As part of the celebration of Nelson Mandela’s legacy at the South African Embassy in Washington DC, 67 Blankets presented 67 scarves to the Weinberg Housing and Resource Center, operated by Catholic Charities of Baltimore. Hundreds of scarves were collected for distribution.

After the ceremony, hundreds of scarves were donated to the Open Door Women’s Shelter in Washington DC. Hundreds more hung from railings surrounding the New York Avenue Group Home Shelter in Washington DC, where residents were invited to help themselves to the colorful handmade scarves. It was very rewarding to be able to share these scarves with our neighbors that are experiencing homelessness in the Nation’s Capital. To see more about the event, visit the www.catholiccharities-md.org.

2018 is the Nelson Mandela Centennial year and July 18 would have marked Nelson Mandela’s 100th birthday! The South African Headquarters of 67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela Day will mark the Centennial by making the largest portrait blanket in the world. The goal is to create the most effective depiction of Nelson Mandela’s face. Each blanket, measuring 160cmx160cm is a single pixel (that’s 1764 blankets), making the Nelson Mandela image only visible from the sky. The Massive Mandela Masterpiece #MMM will be displayed on April 24, 2018 (to mark 24 years of democracy). The #MMM will then be dismantled and distributed in South Africa.

67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela Day in the US will honor his legacy by donating sets of 100 handmade blankets to charities in the US that serve members of the community in need. Nelson Mandela said “It’s in YOUR hands to make our world a better place”. The United Nations declared the 18th of July Nelson Mandela International Day, giving the world an opportunity to participate in the goodness and undying strength of humanity. It is now literally in OUR Hands to change our world for the better. Nelson Mandela’s message still rings loud and clear. Pease join us in this celebration by making a blanket or squares (to be joined into blankets). Let’s make some history right here and honor Nelson Mandela while we help our neighbors!!  Spread the word and be part of the fun! ‘It always seems impossible until it’s done” – Nelson Mandela

For more information on how you can help, email Veronica. Or follow us on Facebook at 67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela – Maryland67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela – Washington DC, 67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela (USA – East Coast).

Blanket sizes:
Small: 36x36” Medium Size: 50×40″ Large Size: 50×70″ Single Square: 10×10″

Send completed Blankets/Squares to:
67 Blankets, 4321 Pleasant Path, Ellicott City MD 21043

10 Secrets to Sock Success

FreeSpirit Quilt challenge defines artisanship with beauty, color and creativity

noun ar·ti·san \ˈär-tə-zən\: a person who makes things by using skill with the hands.

This is a pure definition for the recent “I Am An Artisan Challenge” hosted by our sister company, FreeSpirit Fabrics. As a “yarnie,” you know the name Kaffe Fassett from his multi-color knitwear designs and beautiful yarns bearing his brand. Kaffe’s love of textiles also graces colorful 100% cotton fabrics perfect for patchwork or any sewing project.

To celebrate his pinnacle new Artisan fabric assortment, FreeSpirit hosted a juried quilt challenge, encouraging quilters in the U.S. to highlight the harmony of color and texture from his new fabric collection Artisan, through the creation of 60″ x 60″ quilt featuring 80% of the new Artisan by Kaffe Fassett fabrics.

The Artisan range draws upon Kaffe’s undisputed color genius as well as his decades of experience in fashion, knitting, painting, needle arts and patchwork. Artisan is composed of 100% premium two-color print cottons, hand-dyed batiks, and provocative yarn-dyed woven and classic Ikat fabrics.

The challenge, curated by a panel of experts including Kaffe, selected 13 quilts from 60 entries that hung in a special exhibit, along with a quilt designed by Kaffe, at the Fall International Quilt Market and Festival in Houston, TX in November. During Quilt Market, Kaffe hand selected Wheel Wright’s Fantasy by Barb Sorenson as the first place quilt and Paint Can Posy by Mayleen Vinson as the honorable mention winner. Blue Plate Special by Cherri Kincaid, received viewer’s choice through a Vote Now event on Facebook. Each winning entry received a beautiful commemorative ribbon from FreeSpirit as well as robust prize packages.

We are certain you will enjoy the beauty and color of these entries and perhaps they will inspire you to use your creative talents to try your hand at fabric. If so, try Kaffe’s downloadable eBook, Sew Artisan!, filled with 13 simple projects and complete instructions to create from quilts to fashion and cushions to a play tent – a great gift or perfect for your inner sewists!

First Place – Wheel-Wright’s Fantasy

Viewer’s Choice – Blue Plate Special

Honorable Mention – Paint Can Posy

Also, take this opportunity to register to win Kaffe Fassett for FreeSpirit Artisan Fabric.

Hearts a Plenty

Believe it or not, you have less than a month to plan for Valentine’s Day! Whether you are looking for the perfect heart-shaped project to gift or just a way to make the day feel more festive, we chose some of our favorite patterns to get you in the spirit of love.

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Knit or Crochet with the Pantone Color of the Year, Ultra Violet

Have you seen Pantone’s color of the year yet? Ultra-Violet, a stunning and bold shade of purple, has come on the scene to inspire creativity in us all. We went searching for it in our yarn collection and came out with these four shades:

While we don’t have a perfect match for color 18-3838, the best two matches are Soft’s 3720 Lavender and With Love’s 1538 Lilac. With Love also has a darker version of Ultra Violet, 1530 Violet. And a little blue, but pretty close, Super Saver has 358 Lavender.

Here are some pattern ideas in those colors:


This striping shade of With Love features a beautiful violet, too:

Remember, you can always change to one of these colors if you have a pattern you love that doesn’t already feature Ultra Violet shades of yarn. Be sure to check your gauge when substituting yarns!

12 Easy Weekend Projects

The cold of winter is here and it looks like it’s sticking around. If you’re anything like us, your weekend plans are staying inside and out of the cold! These weekend projects have been selected with your time in mind and can all be completed by the time you treck back to work on Monday.

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How to Crochet Scrubbies with Hyperbolic Ruffles

Hyperbolic crochet is a form of crochet worked in the round to grow items exponentially so that they form organic ruffles. Although the term is derived from geometry and can sound a bit complex, the truth is that you can use the basic concept of hyperbolic crochet to easily created ruffled projects, such as scrubbies for the bath and kitchen.
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Start Something New in 2018

If you are looking for a New Year’s resolution consider taking up yarning. Both knitting and crocheting have been shown to improve your health and make you feel happy at the same time. The rhythmic repetitive movements are reported to enhance the release of serotonin and raise your mood. There are programs that suggest taking up yarning to quit smoking and improve health conditions—who knew?

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Top Free Knit and Crochet Patterns of 2017

2017 has wrapped and we’ve rounded up your favorite patterns from this year. We post hundreds of free crochet patterns and free knit patterns to RedHeart.com every year and we wanted to highlight the top 12 patterns based on the number of downloads. From scarves to hats and of course throws there is a variety of patterns in both knit and crochet, ranging from beginner skill levels to advanced.
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