Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Knitting for the Donkey Sanctuary of Canada

I am really excited to announce this knit project to you all! Our story first started in February 2013. A lovely volunteer from The Donkey Sanctuary of Canada was surfing the Internet looking for a knitting pattern that she could use to make donkey hats. These donkey hats were destined for the Sanctuary`s "Long Ears Boutique" as a fund raising initiative.

The Donkey Sanctuary of Canada is located in Guelph, Ontario. A little more about the Sanctuary as seen on their website, "Since 1992, The Donkey Sanctuary of Canada has been a refuge for donkeys, mules and hinnies who have been neglected or abused, or who can no longer be cared for by their owners. The Sanctuary rescues the donkey with hooves so long it lives in constant pain and cannot walk. It saves a terrified mule shivering in a pen in a slaughterhouse. It offers a home to a much-loved donkey whose ageing owners can no longer provide adequate care. At the Sanctuary, the animals are provided a welcome and often life-saving peaceful haven after years of suffering and neglect." What an amazing cause!

Originally we had discussed reworking TheKnittedArts`popular Yoda inspired knit into a donkey for the Sanctuary. After a few e-mails back and forth I received a photo of the Sanctuary`s oldest resident, a 43 year old donkey named Summer.
Beautiful Ms. Summer - Courtesy of the Donkey Sanctuary of Canada
When I saw this photo of Summer, dressed in her best Christmas bow, I knew that we had to get involved with this amazing organisation. Growing up in the country as a child, my grandparents had a beef farm, and on this farm there was more than just cattle. One of my favourite animals on the farm was a sweet old donkey named Irvine. The photo of Summer just reminded me so much of our donkey friend and I knew that we had to help out the Sanctuary. Excuse the old photos here but this is our Irvine, an old man himself by this point!

 As a result we developed a donkey knit hat and a pattern to help benefit the Sanctuary. This knit, dubbed the "Irvine the Donkey knit hat" knits from the bottom up in a grey coloured acrylic yarn. We then construct three-dimensional ears in the same grey coloured yarn with a crochet technique. The ears are then lined in an antique rose coloured yarn and a mane is added to the hat, giving the wearer a uniquely donkey hair-do!

We hope you enjoy this cute little donkey knit hat as much as we do here at TheKnittedArts! If you are inspired to knit this project yourself patterns are available for sale on our Etsy shop at etsy.com/shop/TheKnittedArts With the purchase of each pattern TheKnittedArts will make a donation to The Donkey Sanctuary of Canada.

If you find yourself in Guelph, Ontario take some time to visit our friends at the Sanctuary! Irvine the Donkey knit hats are currently being hand crafted by Sanctuary volunteers will soon be available for sale in the Sanctuary`s "Long Ears Boutique." The donkeys would love to see you! Find out more about The Donkey Sanctuary of Canada at thedonkeysanctuary.ca

Until we meet again. Happy knitting everyone!