We use wool. The children we focus on live in extremely cold climates. Wool is warm and stays warm even when it’s wet. Please use fiber that is at least 80% wool for Wool-Aid projects. Superwash wool is not required.
We create garments in a warm, dense woolen fabric. The items that we send are often worn indoors as well as outside, because homes are often very cold. Recommended patterns may call for worsted weight, aran, or bulky yarn. You may need to use a smaller needle size than is usually recommended in order to produce a dense enough fabric.
We focus on children. Our campaigns most often focus on clothing for children 8 to 16 years old—because the need is greater for the older children. However, items for infants through teens are always welcome.
Sweaters and vests should close securely if not a pullover style. They should have good coverage for the chest and ample length for the body. Sweater sleeves that are slightly longer than average provide more warmth and protection against the cold. Sweater Dimension Guidelines for Wool-Aid, for sizes 4 through Adult Medium, have been developed to provide appropriate dimensions for 5 key measurements of sweaters. The Guidelines consist of a measurement chart and accompanying illustrations. Please download and refer to these guidelines when making sweaters for Wool-Aid.
Hats and mittens must protect against the harsh temperatures and extreme weather conditions, so they should be thick and dense, not lacy. A bit of extra length on the cuffs of mittens and hats can make a big difference. Please tie mittens together at the cuff.
Socks should be knit in yarn that is worsted weight or slightly heavier, unless specified otherwise. (Sock yarn stranded with worsted weight yarn adds durability.) Socks should have standard heels (no tube socks, please). As a rule of thumb, the leg of the sock (cuff to bottom of foot) should be as long as the foot of the sock (heel to toe), up to about 10 inches. In other words, a sock with a 9-inch-long foot should have a leg that measures 9 inches, too; a sock with an 11.5-inch-long foot should have a leg that measures about 10 inches. Please tie socks together at the cuff.
Blankets and 10” blanket squares follow the group’s standard guideline of 80%+ wool or animal fiber content, and may be either knit and crocheted in a dense (not lacy) fabric. We aim for a 40” × 40” size for baby blankets; blankets for older children should be approximately 40” × 60”—but a little smaller or a little larger is OK, too. Blanket squares will be seamed by volunteers; please leave an 18” yarn tail for seaming.
Please avoid white and very light colors. Acrylic and novelty yarn should not be used, even as an accent.
Individual campaigns may have additional requirements.
NOTE: It is very helpful if you attach a tag to each item; this will be used for assigning its individual ID number; it is also helpful if you can include the primary measurement of the item. We have created Wool-Aid tags that you can use use if you wish. They are available in both Word doc and PDF formats; please print them on heavier-than-standard paper, if possible. A sample tag is shown below: