View Full Version : Lapghans for Veterans

05-31-2006, 11:59 AM
As most of you know, my Grandfather passed away this month. In addition to being a really fantastic grandpa, he was also a Veteran. During the time that I was growing up, my grandfather spent a majority of his post-retirement time volunteering at the Veterans Hospital. He was an "escort". Yes, we had many hours of teasing and laughing about this title. Anyway, he would accompany anyone who had to go from their room to physical therapy, or to x-ray or wherever. He'd bring magazines and papers.

Well he also spent a great deal of time in the hospital himself. He was a wiry old guy and had made it through many physical hardships, starting with being in a military truck that went off a bridge in europe during WWII. A few months ago, I went to see him in a Veterans nursing home and posted this (www.knittinghelp.com/knitting/forum/viewtopic.php?p=138555&highlight=veterans#138555) story about it. I started a blanket that weekend, and unfortunately didn't finish in time to give to my grandpa. So I have decided to get it done, and to start this KAL to try and inspire anyone who has the extra time and yarn to make these lapghans for veterans.

A LAPGHAN IS NOTHING MORE THAN A NARROW BLANKET MEANT TO GO FROM THE LAP, TO THE ANKLE, AND NOT MUCH WIDER THAN THE LEGS. This is so that it can be used in wheelchairs and hospital beds without being in the way. Measurements could be about 24-30 inches across and about 3 to 3 1/2 feet long. With double or triple stranding, it works up pretty quickly.

Here is what I made, although you could make whatever you want!

I am using either double or triple worsted weight yarn so that it works up quickly and is warm and cozy. I am using the last of my acrylic stash, although you can use whatever you like. You can use any number of colors, indeed, you can do random stripes of leftovers! This is just one idea.

Cast on any multiple of 11
Row 1-6: Knit
Row 7: *K2tog, k2, k into front and back of next 2 stitches, k3, sl1, k1, psso, repeat from * across the row
Row 8: purl
Row 9: Same as row 6.
Row 10: purl
Row 11: same as row 6.
Row 12: purl

06-01-2006, 01:16 PM
I'm interested, Carmen. Is there a website or a mailing address I can use for the completed item?

06-01-2006, 01:23 PM
Well, I don't know. I'm sure there is. I was going to coordinate this myself. While I am sure that there is an organization that does all kinds of things for veterans, I would like to take this on for now. If you would like to send a completed item, I will send you my address. I am going to donate whatever I receive to the veterans hospitals in southern california area. However, you can donate yours to your area if you want. But post some pics, etc. here if you do!

06-01-2006, 01:29 PM
You go girl! I don't mind mailing mine to you. I'll contact you when I'm done.

06-01-2006, 01:37 PM
YAY! I am happy to have a companion in this.

06-01-2006, 03:39 PM
Here (www.coatsandclark.com/fun_and_free/yarn/lw1343.htm)

Here (www.knittingpatterncentral.com/directory/afghans.php)

and Here (www.knitlist.com/97gift/quickthrow.htm)

are some patterns.

06-01-2006, 07:25 PM
i've been wanting to do this and donate to our local Vet's Hospital.

my boyfriend is a Vet (Iraqi Freedom) and we've been wanting to do something for the Vets - volunteer or whatever. we just moved here - do you think we should just contact the VA hospital here??

Thanks for the pattern.

06-02-2006, 10:57 AM
I think that would be an excellent idea. I know they need a lot of volunteers and with the world war II vets aging, most of them are not too old, or need services themselves. Plus, I bet not many people are making nice things for the younger vets who need just as much support!

07-29-2006, 01:45 AM
I think it is time for me to finally quit lurking and to start and finish a big project like a lapghan. I am new to the increases and decreases in most patterns so I think I will do a garter stich pattern.

anyone else with me??

09-15-2006, 02:31 PM
this is a great project - i'm the secretary for my church and i have lots of free time on my hands to knit. i've been trying to think of new projets to do without overwheleming people with scarves:) and i think i'm totally jumping on this bandwagon. wonderful idea! (daughter of a vet.)

09-15-2006, 02:47 PM
It is quick and easy. You can do a complicated stitch pattern or something simple. The one that my grandfather received was obviously someone's stash busting project, but he just loved all the colors!

10-02-2006, 04:49 PM
Ladies, any of the VA hospitals in your area would be thrilled to get anything you knit for the gentlemen (there are ladies, but usually very few in the VA Hospitals but I include them too!) Simple knit hats are always great because so many of them are elderly, have lost hair and really get cold through their heads so that is something to think about too! Maybe a matching knit watchcap to go along with the lapghan would be cool!

My dh is a 20 year Navy veteran who retired in 1989. I served 17 of those years with him and it is an experience I will never forget!

If you find you have NO hospital in your area, please use this link then go to "find a facility" button and you can key in the information of the closest hospital in your area. This same site has an ask a question link and you can email them and ask about sending these items to hospitals. Thanks for the wonderful things you gals are doing for our veterans. I know they all appreciate it. My dad was in and out of the VA hospital in Chicago for years and a nice bright gift of a hat and or lapghan I know would have brightened his day!



10-02-2006, 05:05 PM
Thank you, Donna! Now, we can all find our local veterans and send our knitted items directly to them! :)