Sunday, July 13, 2008


So last week I thought I'd have a little raffle. Nothing fancy. Just a little raffle to try to help cover the out-of-pocket cost of my Uncle Jan's new wheelchair. My Aunt and Uncle were responsible for $5000 of the cost of the chair and I hoped we might be able to cut that in half for them.

Boy did I underestimate what a group of knitters and crocheters are capable of! 
  • Eleven of you blogged about the raffle and helped me get the word out.  
  • Hundreds of you emailed to let me know that you are praying for my Uncle Jan. 
  • 18 of you emailed me to donate more prizes. Amazing prizes. Prizes that would be hard to part with.  
  • One of you is knitting a prayer shawl for my Aunt. 
  • Tracy  White, who lives a couple of miles from the Shepherd Center Hospital where my Uncle is a patient, invited my Aunt Shirley over for a home cooked meal.
I am so deeply moved by all of your thousands of acts of kindness for two people you've never met and hadn't heard of until 10 days ago. Together you and I raised a grand total of 

I want to say here that none of this would have been possible without every single one of you. You. I am talking to you specifically. You made this happen.

I also have to thank Jess and Casey of Ravelry for giving us a venue for easily spreading the word about the raffle and putting it on the front page. 

And a special thank you goes out to all of my shareholders, who got the ball rolling when this was going to be a little raffle. Ya'll made me so proud!

Okay, now for the raffle. I had originally planned to make slips of paper for every $10 donation and draw the winners out of a hat. Now that there are 1,380 slips to cut out, this seems like not such a hot idea. Instead, I downloaded my paypal history since 7/4 (it was so big they had to email it to me!), deleted all my sales from the list and copied and pasted the entries in cases where people donated more than $10. For example, if Sally donated $50, I copied her entry and pasted it below the first entry four times, giving Sally a total of 5 raffle entries. After finishing I had 1,380 entries.

[Sorry if this is totally boring; I'm trying to make the process transparent.]

Then I paid a visit to my old pal, the random number generator. I asked it to give me 29 numbers between 1 and 1,380. 

Then I wrote all the prizes on slips of paper and assigned them randomly to a number.

So, without further ado, the winner's are:

Littlegreycat's handspun "Bouquet" goes to: Rebecca Viser

Littlegreycat's handspund "Lagoon" goes to: Megan Lapari

Sue Matthew's Custom-made babysling goes to: Julia Mattina

Polarbear Creations handmade Waldorf-style doll goes to: Billie Gordon

Frog Tree Yarns donated three great prizes. Carol Workman and Bryn Harris each won 10 skeins of sport weight alpaca yarn. Hope Nesmith won two skeins of Frog Tree's new Meriboo yarn (70% Merino/30% bamboo. This stuff is luscious!)

Lynn Frank has won her choice of  of either one skein of her handspun yarn or two hand-dyed rovings or two hand-dyed skeins of sock yarn from theytoldmesew.

Astrahlgems donated three sets of stitch markers as prices. The silver set goes to: Ellen Zemlin. The gold set goes to: Anne Doster. And the bronze set goes to: Melissa Devendorf.

Susanne Matthews has won her choice of yarn from Spiffy Knits.

Karen Van Horn wins the Todos Scarf Kit in Sangria from the Unique Sheep.

Erin G Mercer will take home a set of handmade stitch markers donated by Nelly Ortiz.

Sharon Carver takes home a pair of "flat feet" in the pink/orange/yellow colorway and a skein of alpaca sock yarn in a rainbow colorway donated by Janelle G.

Kimberly Cullen, the lucky dog, has won her choice of four skeins from Ruby Sapphire Yarns.

Michaela Cotton wins her choice of one dpns yarn case from The Organized Knitter, a.k.a. NotMartha.

Carla Willingham has won a prize donated by my mom, a share in the Martha's Vineyard Fiber Farm Spring 2009 Yarn Harvest.

Amy Lim has won a set of knitting looms donated by Crystal from Baby-hugs.

Anna Martin wins the handmade shawl pin donated by ThatOtherRedhead.

Jude Cope wins 11 ozs of her super-fine babydoll southdown roving (undyed) and two 12oz honey bears filled with honey  from Babydoll Acres.

Thalia Brine will be getting a skein of Wollmeise in the Sultan colorway. T.M. Smith wins a skein of Sundra in Basil over Buttercup. Thanks to Nannyb for donating both of these beautiful prizes.

Sue Roth's mini-stash goes to: Christine Giviskos.

Karen Hines and Karen M. Scott each win a Martha's Vineyard Fiber Farm Baseball Cap.

Phebe Brown and Erica N Warren each win a Martha's Vineyard Fiber Farm T.

Kimberly Bush won her choice of any six skeins of Martha's Vineyard Fiber Farm Yarn.

And the winner of the Grand entire yarn stash with the addition of all this donated by Kay Meadors is Gaynor Brown!

Congratulations to all of the winners! Please email me at susangibbs1 at mac dot com with "prize winner" in the subject line. Please specify the prize you won and your mailing address. Most of the prizes are being mailed directly by the donator so I will be passing your email along to the appropriate party.

Please remember the generosity of our prize donors when you are shopping for things to add to your stash.

Finally, several of you lovely people have suggested that if you win, you would like to donate the yarn back to me to start another raffle. I think that is the most beautiful suggestion but I can't accept it. I mean, I really can't. The raffle took up every single moment of my time this week, and I loved every minute of it, but I have to get back to work! I have emails that have been stacking up for weeks and I haven't taken a photo in a week. But thank you for thinking of it! You are the most amazing community I have ever belonged to.


PolarBearCreations said...

WOW! That is just amazing!!!I'm so happy that it worked so well.
It just shows again that there are many good people in this world!
Susan, you can pat yourself on the back as well. Without you this raffle would have never happend in the first place. :0)
All my best wishes for your aunt and uncle. I keep them in my prayers!

Anonymous said...

Ravelry knitters are saluting you and your efforts. Can you hear hundreds of needles clicking together to applaud you?
Job well done!!!

--Deb said...


It just goes to show that knitters are the BEST. Congratulations!


please keep us posted on your aunt and uncle. i am so very glad that your got so much money! now he can get the best chair available! maybe the extra money can be used for a ramp or a hoist to move the chair from point a to point b. my van is dead and so i have had to resort to my push chair and i hate it! the electric is great! i want it with me so i can go where i want to go without asking! i am sure uncle jan will want his with him also. and if they can take the chair with them it will help aunt shirley too! if you don't want to keep a posting in here, will you post me in r or my email. give them both a hug from me and save the returns for yourself. thanks...

sandy puddle duck

Turtle said...

Wow that is incredible! Congrats to the winners and pat yourself on the back for the gift you can present to your family members. Hopefully they can feel our good thoughts and well wishes to them!

Shawna said...

Congrats. You are an amazing person for doing this, and I wish the best of luck to you and your family. I hope you'll indulge your ravelry family with a photo sometime in the future, so we can see your aunt and uncle again! :O)

clarabelle said...

Well done, Susan, and to all the winners! A fantastic achievement all round...

misplacedpom said...

I am so happy! Even though I didn't win, the people you love did and that's all that really matters. 10K!!

Virginia said...

I e-mailed you regarding donating a raffle prize... do you still want it? I sent a pic last week.

Anyway, Congratulations! That's Amazing!

e.marie said...

What a great outcome! Congrats to all the winners, and best wishes to your aunt and uncle.

WriterBug said...

Congrats on your success with the raffle! I also wanted to let you know that I posted pics of the Angora Bunnies we just adopted. Thought I'd let you know just in case you need a different form of cuteness. :)

sarah said...

Wow! Over $10,000??? That's nuts!

Anonymous said...

Holy Cow! That's amazing! You are a wonderful niece....please keep us posted on your aunt and uncle.

rochambeau said...

I come by way of Karen Harvey Cox who wrote about you today in her blog post. This is wonderful news! Makes me happy and touched when I experience the kindness of others! It brings a tear to my eye both for you and for your sweet Uncle. He must be floored!

So happy!

rochambeau said...

Just watched your Youtube. Crying again. So happy you are you!

harry said...

i helped count that!! and baloney man too.

Anonymous said...

I'm **so** happy that the money was raised. I was traveling with no access to the web or I would joined in!

Valerie (Dancing Woman) said...

Awesome! What a lovely example of a win-win situation. Your uncle has his wheel chair and some extra $, your entire family has received an outpouring of love, many knitters won great gifts, and so many in the community of knitters and others have warm fuzzies from helping another in need. You "done good", Susan.

Keep us posted on your uncle's progress when you recover from this herculean effort.

All the best,
Valerie (Dancing Woman)

Wendy said...

10K!!!??? Woot! That's awesome!!!

Please keep us updated!
Still praying... hope all is going well.

Quirkles said...

Well done Susan! What a success! This shows how powerful and compelling you can be. I know your uncle and aunt will be forever grateful for this gift you're giving them.
On another note, see you this weekend for margaritas!

Anonymous said...

That is AWESOME! I hadn't checked back about the prizes, not thinking that I would win anything, and today I received the most amazing thing in the mail: a skein of the famous Wollmeise which I've heard so much about. It. Is. Beautiful! Thank you so, so much... and most of all, I am so pleased that you were able to raise so much money for your aunt and uncle!!! I am sending my good thoughts to them, and you.


Gaynor said...


Thank you

I had just back from a trip when this large box of yarn arrived on my doorstep. No idea what it was or why I had got it. Then I wondered if I had won it, had I entered any competitions? I did remember making a donation to something through paypal. I was happy to make the donation and never expected to win.

I wish all the best to your aunt and uncle. They are truly lucky to have you as their niece

Thank you so much. I will be donating back to you the cost of the postage.