Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Notes from the Grey Sock Project - Knitting Our Heritage!

About the Women’s Patriotic Association

The Women’s Patriotic Association (WPA) was made up of over 15,000 women across Newfoundland and Labrador who donated their time to raise money and support those at home and overseas. One of the WPA’s goals was to provide Newfoundland and Labrador troops with the comforts of home. Volunteers knitted scarves, socks, mittens, and hats which were shipped overseas along with medical supplies and other goods.

To commemorate what the WPA did for those at home and overseas, the Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador, the City of St. John’s, and other partners are embracing their spirit to help those in need today. We have been gathering volunteer knitters to knit socks, scarves, hats and other knitwear to donate to groups and individuals in need.  The Grey Sock Project aims to link traditional craft and contemporary community by creating knit goods, sharing knowledge, and helping each other.

Read more about the Women's Patriotic Association and the grey sock here.

Sock Knitting Patterns

Historic Patterns
  • Check out our past ICH Newsletter for a WWI Knitting Pattern on page 5.
  • The American Red Cross also gathered volunteers to knit socks. Click here and try your hand at this modern pattern adapted from 1917.
  • The Canadian Red Cross Spring 1918 War Work book contains a pattern on page 15. No modern adaptation created. Take a look and give it a try here.
  • See Needlework and Knitting Instructions produced by the British Red Cross Society in 1914 on page 17.

Modern Patterns

Donate your knitting to a good cause 

There are lots of people out there who could use a warm hat, scarf, or pair of socks. You have a couple options for donating your knitting to a good cause.

1. Donate to Some Warm Welcome! It is an initiative created to welcome Syrian refugees that are arriving in Canada. Hats, mittens, socks, scarves, vamps or anything that will keep someone warm this winter are welcome. Attach a tag that says “Welcome to Canada” in English, French and Arabic. These tags are available to download.

Source: Some Warm 
Welcome Facebook page
To donate to this cause, drop off your knitted goods at:
  • any "Some Good Market" event (see for dates and locations)
  • Cast On Cast Off, 685 Water St, St. John's 
  • The Bay Roberts Visitor's Information Pavilion, call for hours 683.1798
  • MALA, 74 Broadway, Corner Brook
  • All 95 public libraries of Newfoundland and Labrador. Check for the closest one near you! 
2. You can mail or drop off your knitted goods to:

Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador
1 Springdale Street, 1st Floor 
PO Box 5171
St. John's, Newfoundland
Canada A1C 5V5

3. You can also donate to your local shelter and/or food bank

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