Another Loss to the Knitting Community

evie rosenI think we just need to get through this week with no more bad news, but I’m also saddened to report that Evie Rosen, the woman who founded the knit and crochet charity Warm Up, America, died recently. She was 86 years old.

Rosen learned to knit at the age of 7 and opened the Knitting Nook shop in her native Wisconsin in 196; it was open for more than 30 years. She also helped found the Midwest Retailers Association and encourage the National NeedleArts Association to open its membership to retailers.

Warm Up, America was founded in 1991 as a local charity to provide the homeless with blankets, and it spread and spread such that in that time more than 15 million afghan blocks have been created and more than 300,000 afghans distributed across the United States and around the world.

Warm Up, America is proof that we can all do a little something even when faced with big problems. The charity collects afghan squares, so you can get a group together and just knit or crochet one block each and still have enough for a blanket to warm one person in your community. Multiply that by every yarn crafter making a square, or a blanket, to distribute locally and you can see what a difference all those little squares can make.

[Photo via Craft Yarn Council.]


  1. Nnancy Tomcek says

    Evie Rosen was a wonderful woman. I met her at The Knitting Nook where she not only gave me knitting tips but thoughtful advise on motherhood. She was so welcoming, always with a smile and a laugh. I’ll always remember her and those years in Wausau, WI!

  2. Heidi says

    What a sad week this is turning out to be. I did not know her personally but knew of the foundation through my mother who made blankets and afghans to contribute to this cause. My condolences to all her friends and her family.

  3. says

    Reading the linked Warm Up America article, I thought, “Look what one woman can do.” Think of all the lives she touched.
    Many years ago I taught a classroom of 5th graders to crochet and we made an afghan for Warm Up America. What a great experience that was, I still see those children and they will mention our crocheting time together.
    Thank you Evie for inspiring others and for sharing the fact we are blessed, when we bless others. You will be missed.

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