Student crochets free rainbow keyrings for NHS

Em Richardson tells us about the Newcastle student sending creative gifts to keyworkers

Em Richardson
5th May 2020
Image credit: Rachel Wilson

Across the country, people are trying to ease the lockdown boredom by starting craft and DIY projects.

From gardening to cross stitching to painting, many people are making time for their hobbies, or even trying something new.

One such individual is Rachel Wilson, a second-year student at Newcastle University. Since 2016, she has published photos of her crafting projects on her Instagram page @rachels_creative_crafts, and she also posts on her Rachel’s Creative Crafts blog.

The Instagram account, which Rachel started ‘to keep busy’ after completing her GCSEs, now has over 600 posts showcasing Rachel’s work. When asked why she enjoys crafting so much, Rachel says ‘I’ve learned lots of new crafts and met so many lovely people, in person and also online’.

Since the country went in to lockdown, Rachel has coined the #rachelscreativequarantine tag on Instagram. She has used quarantine as an excuse to be more creative than ever, including working on crocheting, her latest skill.

She started crocheting rainbow keyrings, and posting photos on her Instagram account

Around the country, rainbows have been adopted as a symbol of hope amidst the current crisis. This gave Rachel an idea - she started crocheting rainbow keyrings, and posting photos on her Instagram account. Initially, she says, these were intended to be small gifts, given to her friends and family, to help cheer them up during this difficult time.

Rachel began sending them to a wider audience, including NHS workers

However, the project has since grown. After the rainbows gained attention on Instagram, Rachel began sending them to a wider audience, including NHS workers. Asked about her project, she explains ‘What started off as just a couple of keyrings to send to people as a thank you for an Easter Egg has led to me sending over sixty rainbows around the country, and even to the NHS. I’m hoping to reach one hundred soon and I am not very far off. It makes me so happy to receive such lovely feedback’.

All Rachel asks in return for her hard work, is that people ‘send a photo of their rainbow in its new home’.

Some of Rachel’s favourite photos are included in this article, but anyone who wants to see more of her rainbows can check out her Instagram page. She has currently crocheted 81 rainbows, so is quickly approaching her goal.

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