May 21, 2018
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Children in region of turmoil benefit from ‘Afghans’ project

By Ardeana Hamlin, BDN Staff

Knitters and crocheters seeking a charitable project that will help warm up a corner of the world may want to consider the needs of Afghans for Afghans, an organization based in San Francisco, which provides relief to groups in Afghanistan.

According to the Afghans for Afghans online newsletter, needed items are:

• Knit baby socks (not booties or slippers) with a minimum foot length of 2½ inches, with a turned heel and leg coverage.

• Baby hats with a minimum head circumference of 10 inches.

• Knit socks (not booties or slippers) for children age 2 to 8 with turned heels and leg coverage.

• Mittens for children age 4 to 8.

• Hats for children age 2 to 8.

• Blankets for babies and small children. For babies, blanket dimensions should be 40 by 30 inches. For small children, blanket dimensions must be 40 to 45 by 45 to 55 inches. Do make blankets larger or smaller than these dimensions.

Knitters and crocheters who want to make items for Afghans for Afghans should follow these guidelines:

• Use wool or other animal fiber yarns.

• Avoid white and light colors. Choose bright hues.

• Classic patterns are best.

• Be sure knit garments allow adequate coverage.

• Avoid lacy or airy patterns.

• Do not incorporate representational images such as faces and animals in the knitting. Islam prohibits depicting such likenesses.

• Do not use religious or national symbols.

• The organization does not accept used items, items made of acrylic fibers, scarves, felted items, slippers, ponchos, ear warmers, quilts, fleece anything, store-bought merchandise, craft-loomed items, unassembled squares or toys.

Baby hats and socks will be sent to a hospital in Ghor, Afghanistan. Items for babies and small children will be sent to a doctor who delivers babies near Kabul.

Blankets and items for small children will be sent to a clinic for newborns and a newly renovated pediatrics unit at a hospital in Kabul.

Deadlines for sending items to Afghans for Afghans is March. Send finished items to: Afghans for Afghans, c/o AFSC Collection Center, 65 Ninth St., San Francisco, CA 94103.

Visit for more detailed information about the agency’s mission and for access to free patterns for socks, hats, blankets and clothing approved by the organization. New projects and requests for items are posted regularly.

Remember, if you decide to help provide items for Afghans for Afghans, think wool, follow the rules, and visit the Web site before sending anything.


• A Fiber Maine-ia workshop on bobbin lace making will be held 1-4 p.m. Saturday, March 14, at the Page Farm and Home Museum, University of Maine. Gloria Buntrock will share the history of the process and engage participants in an introductory exploration of the art form. There is a $5 materials fee, and participants should call 581-4100 to reserve space.

• Maine Fiberarts, 13 Main St. in Topsham has on exhibit “Felted, Embellished Wearables by Lyn Lemieux.” Lemieux lives in Harpswell. Her work will be exhibited through March 31. Gallery hours are 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday through Friday. For more information, call Mainefiberarts at 721-0678 or visit

• WomenHeart members will hold a sewing get-together 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Thursday, March 19, at the Cotton Cupboard quilt shop on Broadway to make heart pillows for hospitalized heart patients.

The public is invited to participate, including those who don’t know how to sew. Volunteers are needed to sew, cut out material and stuff the pillows.

Participants also may buy materials of their choice to make a pillow in memory of a friend or loved one.

For more information, call Alice page at 852-7456.

• Those interested in textiles for historical re-enactment will find in the March-April issue of Piecework magazine articles on the subject, including Civil War socks, and a 17th century undershirt.

Have feedback? Want to know more? Send us ideas for follow-up stories.

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