General Crafting Guidelines

These guidelines were developed to meet the needs and requirements of the hospitals we support. Please see each individual TPP program to find more detailed information about crafting for our programs

Third Hand Smoke Policy

In accordance with hospital policies, items from smoking homes will not be donated to hospitals for use in the NICU.

Research has proven that tobacco and tobacco smoke clings to furniture, clothes, walls. This is called “third-hand smoke”. “Third-hand smoke” cannot be adequately washed out of fabrics and thus raises the risks for many illnesses in children. Please see the March of Dimes website for more information.


Fabrics and yarns must be very soft and machine washable

Acrylic yarns are best

Please, no wool or pompadour yarn.

Do NOT use old yarn.

Do NOT use “eyelash yarn or other similar yarns. The strings can tangled in equipment.

Do NOT use worsted weight yarn for tiny hats or for any blanket for our bereavement program. See list of suggested yarns.  


For holiday donations items, light and bright colors are most desired. Dark colors are not as much in demand

Boy items are always in highest demand.


See our Measurement Guide.

Hats: Verify that the length and width of hats fall within the same size category so they fit properly.

Hat/Bootie Sets: Check the measurements to confirm that the sizes for both items fall within the same size range

Scratch Test

Try our “Scratch Test” when choosing yarn or fabric. Rub the yarn/fabric on the inside of your forearm. Compare it to a super soft yarn like Bernat Softee Baby. If it feels scratchier, it may be too rough for use for items for NICU babies

Preparing Your Donations

Please wash soiled items with unscented detergent before sending. Do not use fabric softener

Don’t forget to weave in your ends on knit/crochet items!

Package each hat/bootie set for the NICU in a separate ziploc bag.

For a sewn item, double check for pins; clip all loose threads.

Include a Donation Tag. Do not attach the donation card with yarn or safety pin. Just include it in the bag with the item.

If sending a large donation, a written inventory of your items is very helpful.

If you would like feedback on the items you sent, please include an email address.

Mail or drop off your donations at:

The Preemie Project
2607 Flagstone Court 
Coralville, IA 52241 

NOTE: If you are local, you can drop off items at the above address. Just put the items in a closed plastic bag and leave on the front step. Please include contact information so we know who to thank.

Reviewed/Updated: 10/28/2020