EVERETT — The table was filled with handmade hats, blankets and stuffed animals.
About a dozen people sat around, all knitting or crocheting.
People wander by to look at the work. That’s why it’s kept on display, group leader Barbara “Bobby” Neason said.
“Men come by and say, ‘My wife used to do that for hours,’ and their eyes always soften,” she said. “It brings back good memories.”
The crochet and knitting group at the Carl Gipson Senior Center in Everett receives donated yarn, and gives whatever they make back to organizations in Snohomish County. Last year, they made about $9,800 worth of goods.
During the summer, they meet every Thursday. The rest of the year they also gather Fridays.
Anyone can join, as long as they belong to the senior center. Membership is free.
The knitting group calls themselves the Knit Wits and Happy Hookers. A former director at the center came up with the name.
Neason didn’t like it much at first.
Then people started stopping by, and she would tell them the title.
“They would walk away smiling,” she said. “I thought, ‘Well, you know, it’s not so bad after all.’ ”
The club formed in 2010.
“As long as there’s places to give to, we’ll be here,” Neason said. “Or until they kick us out if we make too much trouble.”
Many of the knitters have been there since the beginning, including Elaine Edwards.
She has been knitting and crocheting for 78 years.
“For those of us who are alone, this is our community,” she said.
She mostly makes sweaters, but tries to work on stuffed animals between each project. She saves the toys until the winter holidays, then gives them away.
Everyone has different skills.
Bob Seaman has been visiting the club for about a year and a half. He started knitting in the 1980s.
Many of his creations are made from scratch. He spins his own yarn, and carves his tools, he said.
Seaman sells his needles and seam rippers in the center’s gift shop. He makes them with hollow handles, which can store the detachable top.
Folks don’t have to be as advanced in their talents.
The circle meets from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., but those who need help may come in earlier, Neason said.
People can bring their own material and work on personal projects, but to use the yarn provided they must donate the finished product.
“Just come and sit,” Neason said. “Come out of the house, and don’t be home alone.”