Karen’s Story of Generosity

“Although it’s time consuming, it’s worth it in the end to be able to make a difference through my hobby.”

Karen Livingstone


Karen’s story

Karen has always enjoyed crafts, and when she was given a beautiful handmade blanket, she decided to learn to crochet. Her colleague taught her the intricate hand movements, and they spent four weeks crocheting at lunchtime till her first blanket was made!

Karen’s daughter admired her new skill and asked her to make blankets for some families with babies on the way, and her foray into crocheting and looming began. Karen now donates her time and talent crocheting winter hats and scarves for the five Christmas charity boxes her team puts together. She selflessly spends her lunch breaks and weekends crocheting to make sure the children who receive the boxes stay warm through the winter.

How did you learn to crochet?

My colleague taught me during our lunch breaks! It was a challenge to grasp the hand movements at first because she’s right-handed and I’m left-handed. Initially, I crocheted with just one hand, but after watching countless YouTube videos, I taught myself to use both hands.

How long does it take to make one piece?

Depending on the design and whether I have time, a blanket can take up to two weeks to make. Most of them fit a single sized bed. If I’m trying a new design and have to learn something, it takes longer. I usually loom hats and scarves and those can take around four days. When it’s cold out and I’m warm and cozy in one of my scarves, it makes me feel good to know that I’ve helped deliver this feeling to others. Although it’s time-consuming, it’s worth it in the end to be able to make a difference through my hobby.

What sparked the idea of crocheting hats and scarves for the Christmas box?

For the past two years, my colleagues and I have worked with a local charity to put together Christmas gift boxes for teens. The list included winter hats and scarves, so I decided to add a personal touch and make the three sets myself. We started out with three boxes and it grew to five. It’s wonderful knowing that I’ve helped keep these kids warm through our harsh winters. This year, we’ve already started collecting items—we have an empty box in the office and each time we find something on sale, we just put it in. It sounds crazy, but when Christmas rolls around, we will have pretty much everything covered.

I love crocheting for others; I’ve also made a baby blanket for a customer who was due around Christmas, and I often get requests from family and friends.


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