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Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Be Sweet to Your Heart

Be Sweet has always been a company with heart. Their inspiring story shows that it's possible to be successful and still be true to your conscience. Now Be Sweet is taking that mission a step further. We talked to designer Tanis Gray about Be Sweet's participation in the Stitch Red campaign and asked for her thoughts on heart disease, the campaign and her own heart health.

What does the Stitch Red campaign mean to you?
 "It’s unfortunate that so many people have stories about heart disease, but not at all surprising since it is the #1 killer of both men and women. One of my grandmothers passed away due to congestive heart failure in her late 70s, as well as one of my grandfathers having issues with his heart near the end of his life. Like many knitters, my grandmother was very crafty and I am proud to continue on the tradition of making things by hand. I can’t help but wonder if she had had access to modern medicine and been more educated about keeping her heart healthy and strong she might still be here, knitting and crocheting next to me. I chose to get involved in Stitch Red to make their stories known in the hopes that proper education and awareness could save lives."

What's your favorite heart-healthy tip? "Even if you can only get 30 minutes of exercise into your daily routine, at the end of the week that adds up. You’d also be surprised at how easy it is to walk to the post office or bike to the farmer’s market rather than drive. By making small changes like that, you’ll have more energy, be working out more and getting a stronger, healthier heart in no time. You can also set goals and reward yourself with some nice yarn when you meet them!"

What gets your heart racing?
"I love biking with my family. We strap my son into his bike seat and take turns with who carries him. We bike to the river, the farmer’s market, to lunch, past the monuments of Washington, DC and even the yarn shop! I also really enjoy doing Zumba on our Wii, and am happy I can do it in the privacy of our home because I look like a crazy person!"

As a part of the campaign, Be Sweet will be donating 5% of gross profits from their red Whipped Cream yarn and their Keystone Hat kit (both featured above). Additionally, Tanis has a lace infinity scarf pattern using the Whipped Cream yarn that will be featured in the Simply Sweet Look Book #2 coming to a yarn store near you very soon. About the pattern, Tanis had this to say:

"My grandmother and great grandmother were particularly talented in lacework. My scarf is a nod to them, with the joined ends creating an infinite loop of each generation handing down knitting and crocheting to the next. My great grandmother Jenny taught my grandmother Irene, who taught my mother Patricia, who in turn taught me."

Thanks to the fabulous ladies of Be Sweet for your good hearts. May they continue to stay healthy and happy for many years to come.

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