Get into the heart of Bev’s County Cottage, one of the Internet’s most trusted sources for patterns for charity knitting (and crochet!)
If you need patterns for charity knitting (or any other kind of pattern), chances are pretty good that Bev Qualheim has you covered!
Since 2002, Bev’s Country Cottage has offered tons of free knitting and crochet patterns on her website, along with many crafting charities and helpful tips. In fact, Bev’s Country Cottage was one of the first websites I discovered when I first decided to learn about charity knitting.
I’ve featured Bev’s patterns in so many posts here! You’ll see her patterns featured here:
- Free Knitting Patterns for Barbie Dolls
- Adorable Free Knitting Patterns for Baby Cardigans
- Knitting Charities and Patterns for Animals, Both Pets and Wildlife
I’ve also featured the Kaiizen Foundation knitting project she hosts at Bev’s Country Cottage. And when I set out to get expert tips for knitting for elderly folks, she was one of the first ones I talked to.
But I’ve discovered that I truly love finding out what makes someone decide to devote themselves to charity knitting. And so I set out to find out from the dynamo herself!
How Bev’s Country Cottage Began
Nicole: When did you start Bev’s Country Cottage, and what led you to start it?
Bev: We need to head all the way back to the late 1980s to when I had a small-press newsletter that I typed up on an old typewriter in my kitchen. It had 2 names at various times… started out as Families Together, and then became Country Cottage Pen Pals.
It had some old knitting and crocheting patterns, recipes, pen pals, ideas for families to save money, small ads (for which I had bartered) and so forth.
Enter the 2nd stage: we got a computer in 1996 and I did a search for “Osmonds,” as I have been a fan forever.** Found their website Osmond.net and gave them some family ideas to use.
Within weeks they asked me to manage their thefamily.com pages and I had my own “pages” called “The Country Cottage”. It had knitting, crocheting, recipes, family ideas, etc. Sound familiar?
**Nicole’s note: juuuust in case you’re not familiar with the Osmonds, they’re a musical brother and sister who’ve been in show business longer than I’ve been alive. If you’re too young to know that… I still love you.
Eventually, I went off on my own and started up Bev’s Country Cottage in 2002.
Nicole: Has your focus always been charity knitting in general, or was there a specific cause or event that led you into charity knitting?
Bev: I learned to knit when I was 7 years old and living in England. There was a TV show there called “Blue Peter” and I saw that they needed knitted squares to make blankets for victims of a coal mining disaster in Wales if I am remembering correctly.
Anyhow, my mum took me to the local knitting shop and I got some navy colored wool and knitted squares. That was the beginning of my “charity knitting.” I also charity crochet now, by the way!
Fast forward to 1980 when I gave birth to my first baby, a 2-month-early premature baby boy. Scary times for a 22-year-old. Someone knitted a little green and yellow hat for my baby, and that small act gave me so much hope that he would survive! And he did.
I decided right there that I would be knitting and crocheting preemie hats for the rest of my life!
Bev, the Charity Knitting Dynamo, and her Fantastic patterns for charity
Nicole: How do you spend most of your time knitting? In other words, what kinds of knitting are you currently working on?
Bev: Currently I am helping my friend Amy Johnson to make 650 children’s hats (kids aged 6-12) for a school in need in Vegas. Also, making these bears for a friends son (and his fellow paramedics) who make medical trips to Jordon and work with many children there.
Hats or these specific crocheted bears, can be mailed to me at: Bev Qualheim,PO Box 427, Logandale, NV 89021-0427
(Nicole’s note: Bev’s Country Cottage features thousands of free patterns, recipes and more!)
Nicole: Do you have any products you sell?
While I sell some of my original patterns on there, my best selling product is latex free rubber band grips for crochet hooks. The grips make them more comfortable to use.
Thanks so much, Bev, for sharing with Knitting for Charity readers! If you love knitting and crocheting for charity, do check out Bev’s Country Cottage.
In her own words: “I love knitting (and crocheting) for humanitarian causes. So there are free patterns for just about everything anyone needs; plus places who need your help. I also have some delicious family recipes, cross stitch patterns, a bit of family history and more.”
Have you visited Bev’s Country Cottage before? If so, what are your favorite patterns or portions of the site?