The Last Frontier

Friday, January 14, 2011

Knit Hats For Israeli Soldiers

On cold winter evenings, I enjoy knitting beside the woodstove with the soft glow of an oil lamp. For the last few weeks, between knitting hexagons for a bedspread for my son, I’ve been knitting hats for Israeli soldiers. I found this blog of a mom in Israel. Her son is in the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) and told her that he was cold while on patrol. She knit him up a stocking cap that, unlike the hats issued to the soldiers, is warm, comfortable and can be worn under his helmet. Along with gals from her knitting group, “Chicks With Sticks”, she knit more and more hats, and now there are folks around the world knitting and crocheting hats for Israeli soldiers. This year her goal is to help 5000 more Israeli soldiers stay warm with handmade hats.
IDF soldier wearing one of these warm hats in the snow --- yes, it snows in Israel
An Israeli soldier wearing one of these
handmade hats. It actually gets cold
and sometimes snows in Israel.

The soldiers appreciate these hats!
Israeli soldiers are happy to receive these hats


She’s been doing this for several years and has had articles written about her in major Israeli newspapers. If you knit or crochet and would like to whip up a few hats, please visit her blog by clicking here. The patterns are on her site, and hats can be crochet, or knit with straight needles, circular needles, and/or double-pointed needles. Circulars are easier and look nicer, but I only have dpn’s in the correct size at the moment. The pattern is simple. Even a new knitter can do this. She asks that the hats be mailed to her in an envelope rather than a box, and that the declared value be less than $50. Otherwise, she has to pay an enormous fee at the post office when she picks them up.

Here is a hat I'm working on, along with one I just completed. I'll mail them out as soon as we get another plane out this way.

I knit hats in the evenings beside the wood stove, by the light of an oil lamp.
Here's a hat I'm working on, as well as one I just finished.

19 comments:

Sally said...

Thanks for posting this, Jenny! My daughter is into all things Israeli right now, and learning to speak conversational Hebrew. She also knits and crochets. :) I sent her this link.
I like knowing you support Israel.

Carol G said...

That is very cool. Wish I could do it. Are all the hats black? I never learned to knit. I tried to pick up crochet but didn't much past the basic chain. I keep thinking that someday I might try it again.

The Last Frontier said...

That's wonderful, Sally! Thank you very much. I will have to remember to email you later. I'm trying to learn Hebrew, too, and trying to teach the boys, but it's been kind of a spastic effort lately. I stopped for a while because the boys were starting to read English backwards. Learning Hebrew at the same time was confusing them. Now Zeke is reading very well, so we're planning to pick up the Hebrew again soon. My ultimate goal is to be able to read the scriptures in Hebrew. I'm afraid that might be asking too much of this old brain of mine, though. :)
Take care,
Jenny

The Last Frontier said...

I wish this had nested comments like HSB. I didn't see your comment until now, Carol. Yes, all the hats are black. Worsted weight wool yarn is preferable because it's warmer than acrylic, but she said that acrilyc is ok. I recently began learning to crochet, and someone told me that crochet might be a little faster, so I'm thinking of trying a few crochet projects, and then start making these hats that way.

Sally, I love that Israeli flag on your blog. I've been meaning to ask you about that.

Louellen Lawson said...

I love the picture of your hats with the lamp. I also noticed the needles are so pretty. Are they Harmony Wood from Knit Picks?

Take care,
Lou

The Last Frontier said...

Hi Louellen. Good to see you! Yes, the needles are the Harmony Wood (birch) needles from Knit Picks. That's the only set I have, and they're perfect for these hats although I'm getting ready to order more yarn and will get some size 7 circular needles to make it go faster. Have you ever used Harmony needles? Those things are SHARP! Wow! Knitting can be dangerous with those things. :)

Mike n Katie said...

Hi! I am new to your blog and am enjoying it :)

As the wife of a U.S. soldier, this title caught my eye...and the article touched my heart. My husband will soon be off to Afghanistan where it gets cold, too :( Too bad he couldn't wear one of these!

Thank you for documenting your family's life journey!
KatieJ
(stationed in Germany)

Louellen Lawson said...

Yes, I have a couple pair of 7's. Circulars and straights. Sharp.
I recently ventured into the nickle plated needles for my latest socks and I like them a lot.
I guess the bamboo are the least 'sharp'. Congrats on your hats. I am sure they will be greatly appreciated. I have heard of it before, maybe I read about it on Ravelry, not sure. Have a Wonderful day, Lou

The Last Frontier said...

Hi Katie. Thank you for commenting. As I began making those hats, I wondered if there were any groups doing something like that for U.S. soldiers. I would imagine that there's much more 'red tape' to deal in the U.S. military than in Israel. If you know of something like that, or would like to start something, let me know. I will post it here and be happy to knit some hats for American soldiers, too. You might want to check with MrsMamaHen. I have her blog listed to the right. She's a military wife stationed in or near Faribanks. I don't know if she knits, but she might know of a group that does things for soldiers, or might be able to help you get something going.

I'll pray for your husband, and your family. I wish you all the best.

Lou, I have a couple sets of the nickel. Those are nice.

Take care,
Jenny

Debbie said...

Thank you, Jenny! Two of my sons have done the army here and one of them was the recipient of a hat and scarf from a knitter in the U.S. They are all very appreciative of the hats and scarves they received. The climate here is such that even the areas that can be unbearably hot during the day can be very cold at night. Keep up the good work!

BTW, I just found your blog and am very much enjoying it! I have added it to my google reader.

The Last Frontier said...

Hello Debbie! I'm so glad to hear that. I reinforces that I'm doing something worthwhile. It isn't much, and I wish I could do more, but I'm happy to know that these hats make life just a little nicer for them.

Thank you for commenting and visiting.
Take care,
Jenny

Lady-Light said...

I discovered your blog from reading Treppenwitz's.

Thank you for knitting those hats for the IDF soldiers. Three of my children served there, my youngest (a daughter)recently completed her third year of active duty in combat engineering.

I am amazed at your lifestyle, and respect your decision to live out in the true wilderness, although now I could not do it myself.

Keep up your individualism and good work.

The Last Frontier said...

I commend your children, and wish them all the best. My prayers are with Israel and the soldiers. Thank you very much for visiting and for commenting. I hope you continue to enjoy my blog.
Take care,
Jenny

Robert J. Avrech said...

I discovered your blog from my friend Treppenwitz. Thanks so much for supporting the IDF soldiers.

BTW, what happens if, G-d forbid, there is a serious accident—with, say a chainsaw or an axe—do you stock serious medical supplies? How far or close is the nearest hospital?

YMedad said...

When I reached the age of 54, the IDF let me go so I don't need those hats anymore but on behalf of other soldiers who might not know of your contribution, well, thanks.

The Last Frontier said...

Thank you for visiting, Robert.
I'm a nurse, so I can handle quite a few emergencies, but we do keep lots of medical supplies on hand. A hospital is about a half hour flight away. The biggest potential problem is bad weather, which could prevent a flight. The military does lots of bush rescues in bad weather, so that's probably what we'd have to do. When you live this remote, you tend to be more careful. Things do happen from time to time to bush folks, but it's very rare.

The Last Frontier said...

YMedad, I just saw your comment. Thank you for visiting. And, my thanks to you and the other IDF soldiers. My prayers are with them.

Granny Miller said...

I love to knit too. Do you know about the helmet liner program for our troops?
http://www.packagesfromhome.org/things-to-donate/knitted-helmet-liner
The liners go very fast and are desperately needed.
All the best,
GM

The Last Frontier said...

Hi Granny! Thank you so much for telling me about that. I wondered if there was anything like this for American soldiers, too. Those hats sure do look warm. Next time I order yarn, I'll get some for this project, too. I know my boys would LOVE those hats with the built-in neckwarmer. I'm going to make one for myself, as a "test" first, though. :)
I'll read more about it and then when I get started, I'll write up a post about it. I won't forget about the Israeli soldiers, but I get bored with too much of the same thing, so now I'll be able to alternate.
Thanks again for the information and the link.

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