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Wreath Spotting, Cornerstone Blanket Update–and a Drawing

Dear Ann,
First, an update for our readers on the Cornerstone Blanket fundraising project. As of this morning, we have sent off 110 downloads of the pattern to knitters who donated at least 10 bucks to Citymeals-on-Wheels, a New York City charity that rose immediately to the aid of those in need after superstorm Sandy, and now needs extra funding to replenish its pantries and continue its work at a heightened level.
Even more exciting, the donations that readers have sent to Citymeals total nearly $3000. That’s because some contributions exceeded the $10 minimum. We didn’t see that coming–but maybe we should have. When I first noticed it, I went all melty in the cardiac area. So many big hearts out there. Every contribution is meaningful. It’s like the magic of compound interest (back when there was such a thing); a little, and a little more, and pretty soon it’s a lot.
We’d love to boost the contributions up a notch higher. And as it happens, I have knitted up a rather splendid item of Jolly Holiday Decor. It’s my stateside version of the Hampstead Wreath, a pattern that, thanks to sweet friends in London, is itself a fundraiser for Citymeals. (Are you keeping up? Read about the Hampstead Wreath here. Look at these inspiring versions on London doors. And get a Bachelor of Fine Arts in pom-pom placement here.)
I made the wreath just for fun. this past weekend. Personally, I have very little use for a wreath, for two reasons. One: I have a typical New York City apartment door that has 18 layers of paint on it and is seen by so few people that a festive flourish on it would generate very little cheer And Two: the Hanukkah wreath is a concept that has not gained much traction, as far as I know, and as a convert, I try not to rock the whale (OLD TESTAMENT JOKE ALERT). Low profile is my motto. I don’t even do the sweet potato latkes; you can’t be too careful.
Since a handknit wreath is a terrible thing to waste, I think a giveaway drawing is in order. Everybody who has purchased the Cornerstone Blanket already is in the drawing, and anybody who purchases it between now and Sunday, December 2, at noon (New York time), is in the drawing. The winner of the drawing gets the wreath. (Re-gifting is allowed, as is re-embellishing. No pride of authorship. Just recycle the pom-poms please.)
But wait! There’s more! The winner will also receive 5! green! pom-poms! — handcrafted by me, which can be swapped in for the blue ones, for a more traditional Christmas color scheme.
Balto says, well, ok, if you have to. Lay it on me.
I did have to. (This photo taken by a volunteer tourist from the Netherlands. That’s me in the background. Just another day, hanging knitting on Balto.)
To review, if you’d like to enter the drawing for the wreath, and also get a download of the Cornerstone Blanket pattern, follow these 2 steps.
1. Make a contribution of $10 or more to Citymeals-on-Wheels. They will send you an email receipt.
2. Forward a copy of your email receipt to CORNERSTONEBLANKET@GMAIL.COM. Include your Ravelry name so that we can put a copy of the pattern in your Ravelry library (no muss, no fuss).
That’s it. I’ll do the drawing on Sunday night and report the winner on Monday. I promise to mail it on Monday, so that the wreath can get a full display season its first year.
Thank you, everyone, for all the support you’ve shown by buying both patterns, and by your many tweets, FaceBook posts, and pins. It’s wonderful to be a part of this compassionate and social-media savvy community.

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  1. The wreath looks fantastic on your mantel. Thank you for the glimpse into your home.
    I’m so glad you chose those colors. See those blue pom poms? That’s the main color of my home. The red ones? My door, shutters and garage doors. The roof is grey and the porch rails, sills, window trim are all white. I wasn’t sure how all that would go together on a wreath. Now I know. Thanks.
    I was able to find lagging masquerading under the pseudonym pile insulation. Actually, I sent DH after it. He called saying there wasn’t anything as big as I wanted. I think he may need an education in circumference vs diameter. He came home with exactly the right size.
    So, my conclusion. My taupe wreath is destined for the mantle and I’m off to score more bulky yarn.

  2. I started knitting my wreath last night πŸ™‚

  3. I can only imagine what those tourist are going to tell their friends when they get back home!! But it’s a great picture. I need to buy my pattern!

  4. So glad the contributions are accumulating nicely. I wish I could have given more this year but was pleased to be part of it.I love your wreath in its current surroundings -beautiful all the way around.I’ll pretend I could win though it **never** happens with anything. Might go and copy yours anyway. Thanks for the update and lovely giveaway. πŸ™‚

  5. Balto looks like he wants you to throw that wreath so he can bring it back.

  6. Wonderful post. You can’t be too careful–restrain yourself with the sweet potato pancakes! Snorting! I’ve never understood why a wreath is the domain of xmas celebrants, same with holly boughs and pine branches swagged up. Just a nice way to decorate when everyhting is so dead and brown outside… but there you have it. Just like it’s unfair that red and green only have one meaning. Sigh (or…kvetch)(or grinch)).

  7. I love it when you drape/hang things on Balto.

  8. I love it when you drape/hang things on Balto.

  9. A Hampstead truly in the wild on Balto! We tried putting one around Immy’s neck but she wasn’t having any of it. Anyway, enough of such frivolity. Pompom placement – I think you should get an A*, or possibly a First Class BA (Hons), if I’m dishing out degrees in pompoms.
    And a massive Well Done on your fundraising! Citymeals told me that Sandy put $500,000.00 onto their ‘usual’ bill, which is a huge amount of dosh in anybody’s currency.
    Can’t quite believe you’re giving that Hampstead away…

  10. Balto + mantel! I love these little peeks at your life, dear Kay. Beautiful…

  11. Glad the fundraising is going well. Was reading about my old neighborhood in the NYT this morning saying that the Seaport may be sinking, very sad.
    That said, as a Jewish girl married to a Catholic guy, I love the idea of a Hannukah wreath, and you really should try sweet potato latkes, they are delicious (and were first introduced by my aunt when our family had not expanded to include those not raised in the faith!!!!!

  12. BEAUTIFUL! Thank you, Kay for making the donation process so easy! If I’m lucky enough to win the contest, I don’t think I could bear to re-gift. It would look perfect on MY mantel. I’m eagerly awaiting the recipe for the Bowling Avenue blanket too!

  13. You know what might be great on the wreath if you were pomphobic? felted balls.

  14. I thought that was Balto! The kids and I read a book about him for school and when I saw the photo it reminded me of what we’d read! πŸ™‚

  15. Susan in Katonah – you’re so right!

  16. Gorgegous! A lovely idea,coming from one of the most giving people I know. What you can do for a good cause with two sticks and string is amazing! I am half way through mine, it’s in white… so many possiblities and it won’t be packed away for 11 months of the year.

  17. “Just another day, hanging knitting on Balto.” I love it, on so many levels. Thank you for being so creative with your philanthropic crafting, and for sharing the love with all of us!

  18. Oh, and you may be turning into another NYC tourist attraction. “Let’s see if that lady is hanging knitted things on Balto again today!”
    I think I understand your convert caution, but sweet potatoes used in place of potatoes can be delicious, as I discovered this year at Thanksgiving, with mashed sweet potatoes! Isn’t the oil the whole point of latkes, anyway?

  19. Wreath story is great….but what is going on in that mantel???? What are those little beings up to? Grey day way up river from you–until I read your post. Thanks!

  20. What?!!! No Hanukkah Bush for you?
    The wreath is great!!

  21. What?!!! No Hanukkah Bush for you?
    The wreath is great!!

  22. Has anyone mentioned that your wreath looks like it’s done in carved stone–sort of in harmony with your lovely mantelpiece? What is the yarn that looks like stonework? Most beautiful.
    I’ve made my donation for the blanket pattern, but I can’t use the wreath either, for reasons similar to yours (though I’ve made latkes out of everything up to and including 7-Eleven Brand Instant Mashed Potato Mix, and they taste just as authentic as grandma’s.)
    Happy Hanukah! I miss the Upper West Side at this season. Not to mention Balto.

  23. What yarn did you use? I can’t decide what to use.

  24. What yarn did you use? I can’t decide what to use.

  25. What yarn did you use? I can’t decide what to use.

  26. You’ve inspired me…I purchased the wreath pattern. And I love knitting the center block squares for the Cornerstone Blanket…they are addictive.

  27. this is another holiday we all have spent with you
    tis nice to think after sandy we have a safe place
    to gather and chat and be helpful
    i was born in elizabeth nj long time ago
    i live florida now but my holiday season
    still begins with the lighting of the tree
    in new york city have a loverly

  28. thanks for turning me onto Balto and friends….wonderful story we southerners somehow missed….maybe too much “Remember the Alamo” when I was in school.

  29. UDNjraDGcWYZSTLRwl 6496


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