A Stay Strong Shrug can be made with any yarn, needle size or stitch pattern. Your goal is to knit or crochet a finished fabric that measures approximately between 45-55″ wide by 28-32″ from top to bottom. Some stitch patterns are stretchier than others. When making a tunisian crocheted shrug, I lean toward 55″ whereas when knitting the PDF version which is done in stockinette stitch with a garter stitch border, I’ll shoot for 45-50″. When finished, with wrong side up, fold the four corners toward the center, and lace the sleeves closed. This finishing technique gives the mom receiving your gift the option of wearing it or using it as a throw.
You can lace your seams closed with an i-cord, a long crocheted chain or even a thin ribbon. A nice long crocheted chain made with matching or coordinating yarn gives a pretty finishing touch.
I recently taught myself how to crochet so I could create and understand a pattern for crocheters. An important thing to consider when making a shrug – whether its knitted or crocheted, is how heavy different yarns and stitch patterns work up. By making this super simple crocheted shrug, I’ve eliminated some of the finished weight by using a more open stitch pattern. After your initial chain, the entire piece is just half double crocheted stitches which work up quickly leaving a nice balance of yarn and open stitch work.
If you’re a sock knitter or have made one of the beautiful fingering weight shawls that are so popular now (we are talking to all of you “Find Your Fade Shawl” knitters!), you might be interested in using some of your leftover yarn to make a Stay Strong Bear Buddy for a child entering RMD House. These are easy and work up quickly in the round with very little finishing work required. Just slip the single I-cord “arm” through the holes you create when making the body, sew on a cute face, stuff and seam the top of his head closed. We would love to collect enough Stay Strong Bear Buddies to go in every tote we ship to RMD Houses.
We are creating a community of support together and you deserve to be recognized for your effort. You can add your own note or print out one of our cards to write your message on.
Printing on cardstock is best. Your note doesn’t have to be lengthy. You can add a simple message like: “Handmade for you with love in every stitch. Stay Strong!” – then add your name and hometown. It can be really difficult to find comforting words for a mom fighting alongside her seriously ill child. Hopefully each mom will feel our love and support when she wraps up in our shrugs and shawls.