In January 2011 Louisa Harding’s husband and photographer Stephen was diagnosed with Lymphoma, a type of cancer.
Since they live in the United Kingdom, they received treatment and support from an organization called Macmillan Cancer Support.
You know how here in the United States we do sponsored walks and runs to raise money for charities we support?
Parju hat--Photo by Stephen Jessup
Well, at the beginning of this year Louisa signed up for an 11 day hike through Nepal to raise funds for Macmillan Cancer Support. You can read more about it on her fund raising page here.
She has set a goal of raising 5,000 pound sterling. At last count she was at 82% of her goal!
What does this have to do with knitting?
Hats! Beautiful hats!
Instead of just asking you do donate money to her challenge (which you are more than welcome to do, follow this link) she has designed a series of hats in exchange for your donation.
Tara hat--Photo by Stephen Jessup
It’s an honesty system. Download the PDF from her Macmillan fundraising page, then donate what you see fit on her Just Giving page. (Don’t worry, the system will convert your American dollars to British Pounds.)
There will be seven hat patterns all together. The first six have already been released. She’ll be knitting the seventh one during the course of the hike.
Lamakhet hat--Photo by Stephen Jessup
I’ve sprinkled the images of the three new hats through the post.
The first, striped hat is the Parju hat. It is knit using Louisa’s new Amitola yarn. Amitola is a 80% Wool 20% Silk with approximately 273 yards per 50g ball. It comes in 10 self-striping colors.
The second, light green hat is the Tara hat. It is a slouchy beanie knit using a combination of the lovely Grace Silk and Wool and Grace Hand Beaded yarns.
Grace Silk & Wool is a 50% Merino Wool 50% Silk with approximately 110 yards per 50g ball. It is available in a range of colors with three new ones for the fall.
Grace Hand Beaded is a 31% Silk, 31% Merino Wool, 8% Polyester, 30% Glass Beads with approximately 74 yards per 50g hank. There are eight new colors for the fall, bringing total colors to 16.
The third, dark green cabled hat is the Lamakhet hat. It is knit using the new Orielle yarn. Orielle is a 100% Baby Alpaca with approximately 120 yards per 50g hank. It is launching with 16 colors ranging from soft pastels to rich jewel tones.
(I think Lamakhet is my favorite of this group of hats, but I love cables!)
More beautiful hats!
The first three patterns were just as attractive. When the challenge first launched a knit along was started in the Louisa Harding Lovers group on Ravelry by Lisette, who has been working her way through the entire series.
She was nice enough to share her pictures with us. The models are the lovely young ladies from Lisette’s local yarn store Knitique.
Karuwa and Annapurna Hats--Photo by Lisette Davis
The two color hat with the flower on the left is the Karuwa hat. It was designed using Louisa’s Thistle yarn, which has been discontinued. But you probably have some in your stash. We were able to rustle up some here in the warehouse that we donated to Lisette to make up her hat kits for the event (not to toot our own horn, or anything. )
The hat on the right with the heart pattern is the Annapurna hat. It is knit using Grace Silk & Wool yarn.
left blue Karuwa and right pink hat is Sardi--Photo by Lisette Davis
Here is another view of the Karuwa hat. The pink hat on the left with the heart cable is the Sardi hat. Sardi was designed using Thistle.
You probably already guessed that Sardi is my favorite from this bunch. That heart cable is just to pretty to resist!
At the end of September a yarn store in the United Kingdom called Stash Fine Yarns held an event supporting Louisa’s efforts. They raised 400 pound sterling to contribute to her cause.
As I said at the beginning of the post, she’s reached 82% of her goal of raising 5,000 pounds. With just a month to go until she ties on her hiking boots a final push is in order.
Lisette has organized an event at Knitique for Friday, Oct. 5.
Louisa Harding Charity Event
Friday, October 5, 2012
6:00PM to 9:00PM
Knitique, A Yarn Boutique
Elk Grove, CA 95624
There will be hat kits available for a donation, a class to help you get started, a raffle, and food.
Let’s all move to California real fast so we can attend!
They have also received a limited supply of book plates signed by Louisa. So if you call the store and order one of her books you can have the autograph added to it. (What’s a book plate? You’ve seen them in library books. They are the pretty stickers you can put on the inside front cover to identify ownership. You can see a picture of them on Lisette’s blog.)
All in all, it sounds like a fun evening for a good cause.
If, like me, you aren’t in California you can attend in spirit by donating to Louisa’s challenge and downloading your favorite Hymalayan Hiking Hat pattern.
Has your local yarn store organized a similar event for charity? Give them a shout out in the comments!