Oscoda County 84-Year-Old Makes Hundreds of Hats for Strangers

An Oscoda County woman is spreading holiday cheer through a hobby inspired by her family.

She’s making hats not only for her friends and family, but for strangers too.

Marian Buchanan started making hats while coping with a death in the family.

Now, she’s made hundreds and hundreds, to spread cheer and smiles.

“These hats I started making a year or 18 months ago. My husband died, we’d been married 64 years,” said Marian Buchanan. “I was pretty lonesome and my grandkids come and say, ‘Grandma, we brought you some yarn. How about making us some hats?’”

In those months, a few hats turned into more than 1,200.

84-year-old Marian Buchanan sent them off to friends and strangers, just because.

“Did you ever see the joy in someone’s eyes when you give them something? It’s just like having Christmas morning every day.”

Marian now has hats all over the place.

It started with her children and grandchildren, and demand spread by word of mouth.

“My grandson came and took about 20 hats. Then he came back the next day and said, ‘Grandma, you got some more hats?’ He said, ‘I’ve got a lot of people that want hats.’”

Three hours of love go into every single one, and Marian’s kids and grandkids restock her yarn, so she doesn’t run out.


“It’s the parents that really appreciate getting them, too,” said Marian’s friend Dolores Griffiths. “The hard work Marian’s put into those hats is the first thing they say to me. ‘They’re handmade aren’t they?’”

From Michigan to Wisconsin and even England, her crocheted hats are keeping more than 1,200 people warm.

“One time I was in Walmart at West Branch. And I looked up and there’s a gentleman walking with one of my hats, and I didn’t know who he was,” said Buchanan. “It makes me feel like I’ve accomplished something. Something that someone can enjoy.”

Marian says as long as there’s yarn to use, she is happy to make hats for anyone who wants them.

She also volunteers at the Emma Lowrey Congregational Church food pantry in Luzerne, which she calls her second love.

If you’re interested in sending Marian yarn or requests, the address is P.O. Box 334 Luzerne, MI 48636.