Thoughts from category: the big knit

meet the knitters: linda and sue

The other day we heard from Linda who, along with her sister Sue, have knitted an amazing 1935 hats in memory of their mum, Sheila.

Anyone who knits 2,000 hats for charity is already amazing in our book, but Linda and Sue’s reason for knitting over the last year is pretty special. Their mum Sheila was already a regular knitter and taught both Linda and Sue how to knit when they were little. They’d even taken part in the first few years of the Big Knit back when we started it up in 2003.

In 2015, while Sheila was in hospital, the three of them knitted little hats together before Sheila sadly passed away. As Sheila was born in 1935, Linda and Sue decided that they’d like to knit, completely unaided, 1935 of the little hats the three of them had always enjoyed knitting together.

Linda, Sue and Sheila, thank you for all the hats you’ve knitted over the years. We are hugely grateful and the Big Knit simply wouldn’t work without the help of great people like you. Thank you.

meet the knitters - 2015 edition

We’ve already mentioned the Big Knit on the blog. A few times, in fact. It’s one of our favourite subjects. 

We love our knitters and every now and again you get in touch with pictures or stories that we want to spread further. So, now that this introduction is at the industry standard length, we’re going to share with you a few of the stories we've heard this year. 

Hilary and her 92-year-old mum, Lily, knitted over 300 hats for us this year. We’re pretty sure Lily might be one of our oldest knitters this year. A massive thanks to them (and that chick hat at the front is genius.


Katherine, on the other hand, is just four years old and possibly our youngest ever knitter. Her mum let us know that she'd managed to make 15 of her own Big Knit hats (with only a little bit of help). Thanks, Katherine (and Tiffany too, of course).


Stella found herself in hospital back in 2011 and took up knitting Big Knit hats as a way to keep herself busy. Since then, she’s made over 1,400 hats. That’s enough to fill an entire football stadium (albeit a miniature one). Cheers, Stella.


Jo has been involved with the Big Knit for years. She even started her own website entirely to help others take part. She’s very much a legend round these parts so we can’t say we were surprised to find out she’d made 1000 hats this year. We’ve said thank you to Jo many times over the year, and we’ve no trouble saying it again. Thanks, Jo.


Last week Rashmi got in touch with us via Twitter and Facebook with an amazing bit of news about her mum knitting over 1,000 hats for us. We retweeted it, obviously, and felt all warm as loads of strangers sent in messages of thanks and support. The internet can be a wonderful thing. Thanks, Rashmi’s mum. You're a knitting superstar (like Beyoncé but with knitting needles).

We love finding out more about our knitters. Please do drop us a line if you know of somebody amazing who you think should get a mention. Thank you again to everyone above, everyone who isn’t and everyone who will be in the future. You are all the best.

Animals in Big Knit Hats 2: The hattening

We’ll come straight out with it. We’ve done this blog post before and, when the Big Knit hats start appearing on the shelves in February, we’ll almost certainly do it again. We’re not sorry. It’s animals in Big Knit hats. We’ll never be sorry. 

So here we go again. Five of our favourite animals in Big Knit hats. Because why not? 


Like a reflection caught by Cartier-Bresson, Yvonne’s tortoise Harry gazes into the eyes of her woollen twin. What thoughts are going through her head? Is it love? Confusion? A brief moment of wondering where the next lettuce leaf will come from? Sadly, we’ll never know. Unless our tortoise mind-reading machine works. We’ll know then. Fingers crossed.


Nicole's pug, Archie, sitting bolt upright, his face looks almost surprised at the excellent framing of the picture. The hat sits in the foreground, Archie in the back, and yet the two fit together perfectly like Lego bricks meeting for the first time.


Where others are more than happy to dress their animals in regular Big Knit hats, Fiona has decked hers out in one of our larger hats produced by Oliver Bonas. He turns towards the camera, almost daring you to ask him why he's wearing a hat. You know the answer already. It’s because he looks fabulous.


We’re fairly sure Amy didn't send us a picture of a real dog but who cares? Just look at it. Small, cute, its glassy eyes managing to see something in you that’s usually reserved for only your closest loved ones. You find yourself wanting to tell it your secrets, to reveal the person you really are underneath all this modern-day artifice. A truly beautiful moment.


Carrot in shot, check. Ears going in different directions, check. Big Knit hat somehow staying on, check. We have nothing more to say. Congratulations to @harrri, it’s the holy trinity of rabbit Big Knit pictures. 

So there we have it. Five more of our favourite animals in Big Knit hats. We'll see you again in February...

Animals in Big Knit hats

The Big Knit has been in full swing over the last couple of weeks and you lovely lot have been showering us with lots of excellent photos of your behatted smoothies (keep 'em coming). In the case of...erm...the more...enthusiastic...among you you've even gone so far as to place the hats atop a fluffy head or two. As it's difficult to think of many things more adorable than a pet sporting a tiny hat we've compiled our Top 5 favourite animals in Big Knit hats so far:

5. Georgia's cat Kevin

Black and maroon go together like Kim and Kanye and Georgia's cat Kevin knows it. Front paws splayed, eyes fixed mischievously on the camera, whiskers perfectly groomed, fur sleek and glossy: this is a cat who knows how to wear a hat. Bravo Kevin. Bravo.


4. Lucy-Elanor's guinea pig Daphne

A tiny bear on the head of a guinea pig? They said it couldn't be done, they said it had never been seen before, they laughed, oh how they laughed...LOOK UPON THIS PHOTO AND WEEP, MY FRIENDS. Lucy-Elanor has succeeded where many have failed (probably) by successfully placing a tiny bear hat on the head of a long haired guinea pig called Daphne. You're our hero, Lucy-Elanor.



3. Katy's degu Moss

This degu. What is a degu? Is it a chinchilla? Is it a possum? Is it a big rat? Whatever it is, Katy's degu, Moss, is our favourite degu. Ever. Especially when he's wearing a hat with dreadlocks attached. Glastonbury ready, for sure.


2. Ella the rabbit

This photo of @Tubayv's rabbit Ella should hang in the National Portrait Gallery. Perfect sideways turn, Mona-Lisa-esque ambiguous smile, powerful glare - it's got all the makings of a masterpiece. And the hat covering the ears? A stroke of genius. Hilarious genius.


1. Andrew's dog Orla

Regal. Majestic. Sublime. Lofty. Appraising. Imposing. Dog-like. These words, and more, came to mind when we spotted this photo of Andrew's dog Orla sporting a Big Knit hat. We've never seen an animal look quite so dignified with a miniature woolly hat perched on the top of their head and we just feel that Orla has taken the whole thing to another level. A level that we weren't expecting. If Orla's free for any ad work, be sure to give us a bell, Andrew, yeah?


Thanks to everyone who has bought one of our behatted bottles this year - whether you've placed them atop the head of an animal or not you've made our day and helped raise lots of money for Age UK. You're the best, basically.

The Big Knitter

First off, we want to start by saying a massive thank you to you lovely lot for knitting us a grand total of (drum roll please....a louder drum roll please...a Phil Collins style drum roll that just keeps going...) 862,763 hats for the Big Knit. That is magnificent. You're all amazing and we can't wait to get the little beauties on our bottles in February. Celebratory fist bumps all round.

But, if you didn't manage to knit us a hat for our Big Knit campaign then never fear, there's an opportunity for redemption in the shape of our Big Knitter

Knit us a virtual hat and share it on Facebook or Twitter to raise 10p for Age UK and help keep older people warm this winter. 

Easy peasy.