Knit one, purl two

Collaborating on community warmth

Posted: Wednesday, April 17, 2002

One blue block the size of a salad plate may be inconsequential. However, stitch it to 23 other knitted or crocheted blocks, and you have a lap afghan.

That's the crafty philosophy behind Warm Up Southeast, a group founded by LaVena Sargent. Sargent is the hostess of the KATH television program, "Around Our House," in which she takes everyday materials like clothes pins and glitter and creates interior decorating masterpieces.

"I saw it on the Oprah program, and I thought it would be a good community project," Sargent said. What she saw was information about Warm Up America, a volunteer group that collected all those unfinished projects gathering dust and combined them into warm coverings for the needy.

Sargent cued in her viewing audience to the project in November. As a result, she received all sorts of donations through a drop off point at Thunder Mountain Arts and Crafts. Local Girl Scouts were instructed on how to put the pieces together, with the result that Warm Up Southeast was able to donate more than a dozen lap afghans to residents of the Juneau Pioneers' Home on April 4.

To volunteer for Warm Up Southeast, call Sargent at 789-3120. Donations of lap quilts would also be welcome, she said.

Warm Up America has inspired many regional spin-offs, such as Warm Up Connecticut Kids. To learn more about Warm Up America, browse at either of two Web sites: or

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