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Hand Made

Local women make the Holidays a little warmer

Sign up to participate in Handmade for the Holidays

This holiday season, two Cape women will create, gather, and distribute hand-knit winter clothing to local homeless women and children, and they’re rallying an army of local knitters and crafters to aid them in their cause.

Handmade for the Holidays, organized by local crafters and businesswomen Beth Dunn and Melissa Averinos, will deliver hand knit gloves, hats, scarves, mittens, blankets, quilts, and stuffed animals to young families on Cape Cod who are going through difficult economic and emotional times.

“It’s not just about keeping warm,” says organizer and local shop owner Melissa Averinos. “It’s about knowing there are people out there who care about you, and who cared enough to spend a few hours creating a beautiful, handmade piece of clothing for you and your children during a really hard time.”

Handmade for the Holidays is partnering with WE CAN, a nonprofit in Harwich Port (, whose staff will ensure that the items go directly to needy women and families in time for the holiday season.

Knitters and crafters who want to help can register in person by visiting Averinos’s West Barnstable store, Yummy Goods, or online at Participants can work individually or register for one or both organized gatherings at Yummy Goods on Wednesday, 11/11 from 5 to 8 p.m., or on Friday, 11/20 from 1 to 4 p.m. Beginners are welcome, and registrants will be notified about what type of materials to bring along if you need guidance. (Feel free to bring your own projects if not a beginner.) Relaxed and inclusive instruction will be provided.

All participants will be invited to celebrate the conclusion of the project at a public open house at Yummy Goods on Friday, December 4, from 6 to 8 p.m.

“I knit piles of hats and scarves and gloves every year for my friends, but I always wish I could get them in the hands of people who really need them; not just to protect them from the cold, but to protect them from feeling isolated and alone,” says Beth Dunn, a local small business consultant and avid knitter. “Handmade for the Holidays is sort of an extension of the ‘prayer shawl’ concept: we want these women and children to know somebody was thinking about them and wishing them well with every single stitch.”

Handmade for the Holidays is also accepting donations of yarn, needles, and other knitting and crafting supplies to be used by local volunteer crafters. Individuals and yarn stores with supplies to donate can learn more by calling Yummy Goods at 508-362-YUMM.

Meet the Women behind Handmade for the Holidays

Melissa Averinos

Melissa Averinos is a local fabric designer, author, and entrepreneur. Her West Barnstable gift shop, Yummy Goods, offers quirky and nostalgic jewelry, clothing, furnishings and accessories with a strong handmade ethic.

Her first book, "Sewing with Fat Quarters: 25 Projects Using Designer Fat Quarters", will be published in the spring of 2010.
2455 Meetinghouse Way
West Barnstable.

Beth Dunn

Beth Dunn is a local writer and small business consultant specializing in s social media and Internet marketing.

She is an avid knitter of antique and Victorian socks, lace, and other sundries. She writes about social media, small business, and creativity on her blog,

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WE CAN is dedicated to helping Cape Cod women undergoing major life transitions such as divorce, career change or job loss, illness, or retirement. By furthering women’s development through career assessment, education, training and mentoring, WE CAN helps stabilize communities on the Cape. For more information, call 508-430-8111.