Robin Katz, a compassionate Springs homeowner, is showing her admiration for The Springs Food Pantry and the LongHouse Reserve in East Hampton by coming up with her own novel way of shining a light in a time of darkness. Katz understood the pressure that the Coronavirus has had on the Springs Food Pantry and stepped up to the plate to raise well over $13,000 by personally knitting 35 wool caps. Each cap was given to anyone with a donation over $300.
She explained, “When I began knitting in February, I absolutely loved it. I made gifts for family and friends; gifts made with love with my own hands. Then when the pandemic started, the news of the strain on the Springs Food Pantry (with an additional 500 or so new folks) caught my attention. So I came up with this plan to help. I loved seeing the look on each donor’s face when I delivered their hat. We practiced safe protocols, but their smiles were so bright I could see them even from a safe distance.”
Katz’s wool caps have a unique appeal based on her personal selection of the highest quality yarns and her tasteful style – noticed years ago by fashion icon Anna Wintour’s assistant. At a NYC school event, the assistant approached Katz about some jewelry Katz was wearing and turned that circumstance into a Vogue story that launched Katz’s reputation on jewelry and style to the highest international circles. Concerning the selection of yarn, Katz mentioned how much she enjoyed her visits to “Black Sheep Knitworks in East Hampton Village to select wonderfully textured and hand dyed merino wool yarn to work with.”
Now Katz is knitting caps to help the LongHouse Reserve. She said after hearing about the difficulties LongHouse was having due to the Coronavirus, “I decided to shift my knitting of caps in their direction. I saw how successful the Springs Food Pantry fundraiser was, so I contacted LongHouse.”
She reached out to Matko Tomicic, LongHouse Executive Director, who has posted this message to all LongHouse supporters, “We are excited to share this new project with you, Hats Off To LongHouse, created by LHR volunteer, docent and knitter extraordinaire, Robin Katz. Robin is weaving together two of her passions, LongHouse and knitting, to knit 30 hats in 30 days to raise funds for LongHouse, ‘her happy place.’ These 100% ultra-merino caps are being made exclusively for us by Robin, in a limited edition of 30. Each hat is offered for sale for a minimum donation of $300 that is 100% tax deductible with all sale proceeds to benefit LongHouse. These soft and stylish caps are sized to fit most, and include an embroidered heart on the front. We are so grateful for the support of our volunteers and docents like Robin and their dedication to LongHouse and the local community. Purchase a beautiful knit hat made with love and help support LongHouse during these challenging times.”
Katz sent me examples of her work relaying, “The blue hat is one I’m currently knitting for the LongHouse Reserve project ‘Hats Off For Longhouse’ and the grey hats were for the Springs Food Pantry project ‘Feeding People One Hat At A Time’ which I’ve just completed 35 hats for.” She mentioned a special thanks to Ben Barzilai who helped augment this interview and story.
After speaking with Katz, I couldn’t help but reflect on how so many East End volunteers have felt the need to create with their hands. Katz is just the latest and quite frankly one of the most successful at raising very much-needed funds.
To purchase a “Hats Off For Longhouse” wool cap, visit www.longhouse.org. For more information about the Springs Food Pantry, visit www.springsfoodpantry.com.