Cuddle Bears for Vulnerable Children

Something really special happens when a group of crafters is inspired by a moving story.  They want to help.  And they do.

Cuddle Bear Project 8 at Sheep Thrills Yarn Shop Broward County 4725 N. University Drive Lauderhill FL (954) 468-5577 @sheepthrillsfl Caissa McClinton @artlikebread

At Sheep Thrills in Broward County, the Cuddle Bear Project has been a crafting focus and a source of purpose in the past month, and will continue to be so for years to come.  The charitable project began just a few weeks ago.  The process is simple:

  1. Knitters and crocheters lovingly craft sweaters for stuffed teddy bears.
  2. Personalized, handwritten note tags with encouraging words are attached to the sweater and the sweater is placed on a stuffed teddy bear.
  3. The teddy bear is then given to a police officer or child protection worker who will in turn pass the Cuddle Bear on to a vulnerable child in a difficult situation.

The Need

Unfortunately, when families have domestic disputes, there are cases where a child needs to be separated from his or her parents for safety reasons. Whether it is only for a few hours or it needs to be more permanent,  this separation can be a source of trauma for a child.  The teddy bears with handmade sweaters will be given to children in exactly this situation.  The hope is that they will find some comfort in these moments.  As the police officer gives a scared child a teddy bear, the child will have something to hold on to.

The First Batch of Cuddle Bears on the couch were a sight to behold!
The First Batch of Cuddle Bears on the couch were a sight to behold!

All of the supplies, including stuffed bears, yarn, and tools if needed are donated by Sheep Thrills.  On December 20, one hundred bears were donated to the local police and child safety workers for distribution in our county.  This project will be ongoing and was recently covered in the Sun Sentinel.

My Cuddle Bear

I personally took part in the Cuddle Bear Project and I relished working on this simple piece.  I crocheted each stitch with intention and tried to infuse the finished piece with good feelings.  It was wonderful to sit around a table with fellow crafters and for us all to be working with the same purpose in mind.  The conversation was wonderful and it felt good to be helping in some small way.

I made a cute accessory for that big, brown bear.  I named him "Mr. Bear Paws."
I made a cute accessory for that big, brown bear.  I named him “Mr. Bear Paws.”

Join In & Help Out

If you are interested in making a knit or crocheted Cuddle Bear Sweater, you can stop by the store for a free pattern print out.  You can craft in the store with donated yarn if you’d like!  We’d love to see you!

Free Crochet and Knit Teddy Sweater Pattern Links

Other possible Cuddle Bear Sweaters can be found for free online and include Teddy or Baby Doll Cute Cardigan Jacket, Poppy Cardigan, and Beary Easy Sweater in knit; and Seasoned Just Right, Teddy Sweater 3, Easy Sweater Pattern for 18-Inch Doll, and Animal Sweater in crochet.

If you are not close to Sheep Thrills, you could always start a project like this in your area!

As always, thanks for reading the blog! If you liked learning about the Cuddle Bears of Sheep Thrills, please share this post with a friend through social media, or better yet, give a good friend a call and meet up at Sheep Thrills! We’d love to see you in the store, so remember we can be found at 4725 N. University Drive in Lauderhill, FL 33351. Feel free to give us a call at (855) YARNS-4-U or check out our website at

Knit Along with Susie – Details on The Road Map Scarf

As you may know, Susie made a beautiful Road Map Scarf sample and everyone in the store has been going gaga for it!  By popular demand, she’s leading a Knit Along, and soon you’ll see these handknit beauties driving the roads of Broward County!

Make this Awesome Road Map Scarf at Sheep Thrills Yarn Shop Broward County 4725 N. University Drive Lauderhill FL (954) 468-5577 @sheepthrillsfl Caissa McClinton @artlikebread

According to designer Susan Barstein’s Ravelry page, “Road Map is a scarf made up of 10 different designs. The scarf is knitted in one piece and an attached icord is added to the sides. This is a fun and educational project for an intermediate or advanced beginner to knit.”

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Join Our Knit Alongs!

This Week’s Knit-A-Longs
By special request, we added more KALs for the Road Map Scarf. This Friday, December 11th and Saturday, December 12th, we are having the Road Map KAL from 2 pm to 4 pm. Two separate KALs. This is a two-session KAL and the second one for each will be the following week on Friday and Saturday, December 18th and 19th at the same time. There is no charge, as long as materials are purchased in the store. Susie is heading it, so she will be there if you need any help. Level: Intermediate. If you want to see what the finished scarf looks like check it out. For more information come by the shop or call the shop. 954-468-5577.

Make this Awesome Road Map Scarf at Sheep Thrills Yarn Shop Broward County 4725 N. University Drive Lauderhill FL (954) 468-5577 @sheepthrillsfl Caissa McClinton @artlikebread 2

On Sunday, December 13th from 12 pm to 5 pm, we are having a new KAL to make the Sheep Balls ornament. This is a really cute project and knits up quickly. It is a Fair Isles project perfect for practicing that technique. There is no charge for this, as long as you purchase the supplies at the shop. You can either knit these with DPNs or with Magic Loop. Bring size US 1.5 needles. If you’re a tight knitter, you might want to bring a size up. Brigitte will be heading this KAL. If you get stuck at a part, she will be more than happy to help. Level: Intermediate. If you want to see what the finished ornament looks like check it out. Come by or call the shop for more information. 954-468-5577.

Sheep Balls Ornament KAL at Sheep Thrills


Mini-Skeins for Your Many Moods

If you’ve been keeping abreast of yarn trends here in Broward County and all over the world, there’s no doubt you’ve noticed the proliferation of enchanting mini-skeins! I have a suspicion that mini-skeins became very popular largely because of the great hexipuff craze of 2011 (and 2012, and 2013)… In my mind it really took off with the famed Beekeeper’s Quilt by Tiny Owl Knits.  The pattern sparked a craze, with knitters finally finding an amazingly addictive use for their leftover sock yarn.  Because the hexipuffs which compose the cozy quilt are adorable, easy to make, and customizable, the trend took off and the demand for smaller amounts of sock weight yarns was increased.  People started swapping mini-skeins with their friends and indie dyers started releasing mini-skein sets.  Not long after, larger yarn companies followed – first in sock weight, and then in thicker weights.

Fab color patterns by Lee Meredith
Fab patterns by Lee Meredith, designing color work way before hexipuffs! 😉

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Thirty Quick Gifts You Can Crochet or Knit before Christmas!

Yes, yes. The holiday season is upon us. Life is beautiful and busy and I bet your fingers are itching to make something special for everyone. There’s nothing like sharing the holiday love but we’re also on a limited schedule here.

30 Quick Crochet and Knit Gifts to Finish before Christmas

This round up includes links to

30 patterns for quick gifts you can make in batches and finish before the holidays.

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10 Free Crochet & Knit Patterns for Instant Gratification

Yay! I am excited to have something very special for you today!

I have hand-selected ten free crochet and knit patterns.  

I found these patterns on Ravelry, and each is crafted in either DK or worsted weight yarn and can be made with between 150 and 300 yards of yarn.  They are perfect stash busters or 1-2 skein projects.  I love these projects for instant gratification.  Making a perfect gift by hand doesn’t have to take a long time!

Ten Free Crochet & Knit Patterns RoundUp Sheep Thrills Yarn Shop Shops Store Broward County @sheepthrillsfl by Caissa McClinton @artlikebread

Aren’t they gorgeous?

Read on to find out more about these patterns and add them to your favorite and queue on Ravelry.  If you decide to make one, please let Sheep Thrills know!  It’s so exciting!

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Evanthe: A Sheep Thrills Exclusive Knitted Shawl Design by Corrina Ferguson

On the second day of our Socktacular September event, knitting expert Corrina Ferguson taught a class on how to make Evanthe, which is a beautiful, crescent shawl she designed exclusively for Sheep Thrills Yarn Shop in Broward County!

Evanthe Shawl by Corrina Ferguson @picnicknits Exclusive Pattern for Sheep Thrills Yarn Shop Shops Broward County buy the kit only from Sheep Thrills call 954-468-5577 855-YARNS-U 5Add This Pattern to your Favorites and Ravelry Queue Sheep Thrills Yarn Shop Shops Broward CountyAdd Evanthe to your Ravelry Queue and Favorites!

The pattern has gotten some great attention on Ravelry, so we know people are interested in making it!  If you’d like to buy a kit so you can knit this shawl now, click here!  For more details & tempting images, read on!
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