‘Knitwits’ smashes world record

2019-03-12 06:00
The 67 Blankets for Mandela project broke the Guinness World Record for most crotchet knits under one roof recently.

The 67 Blankets for Mandela project broke the Guinness World Record for most crotchet knits under one roof recently.

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What started out as an effort to keep people warm during winter five years ago, has now grown to become a nationwide movement.

Grassy Park resident Ruth Ely, an ambassador and administrator for the 67 Blankets for Mandela project in the southern suburbs, says they started stitching blankets to help comfort families in time of loss, as well as those who’s livelihoods are destroyed by fire, while also knitting knee blankets for old age homes and babies that are born and don’t have a single stitch of clothing.

The group recently set a world record by having 737 people under one roof crocheting at the same time for 27 minutes while listening to Mozart as it coincided with 67 blankets fifth birthday and Mozart’s birthday at the end of January.

Carolyn Steyn started the initiative after somebody challenged her to make 67 blankets for Mandela Day and after realising she cannot do it on her own her sister, friends and their families got involved and now the community boasts thousands of members who knit or crotchet items, known as “knitwits”.

“We doing it in the name of our beloved Nelson Mandela so his legacy lives on. We make it with our own hands as Tata used to say it’s in our hands now.We want people to join “knitwits” around the country to make a difference by joining our movement or donating wool or squares,” says Ely.

She adds that they have “knitathons” at various venues where people meet and make new friends.Ely has been part of the 67 Blankets for Mandela project for the last three years.

“My friend Sandi King another Cape Town ambassador got me involved by asking me and my mom to stitch squares together. Sandi showed me how to crochet as I could only knit at that time and then I was taught hook (crochet hook), line (wool) and sinker,” jokes Ely.

She says schools may make contact with her, anyone associated with the project as an ambassador or visit the movement’s website. “I love this project as it makes people nostalgic every time they see my handwork and we need to get. knitting and crocheting back into the schools good for concentration and so much more.”

V Ruth Ely can be contacted by sending an email to ruthely02@gmail.com or for more information visit http://67blankets.co.za.

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