KIND crafters across Inverclyde are joining together to help a Greenock businesswoman support premature newborn babies.

Mairi Coventry from the Wee Crafty Owl in Jamaica Street has turned her colourful store into a collection point for cute baby hats and blankets for tiny tots.

More than 100 hats and around 30 blankets have been donated in just over three weeks - and the woolly works of art will now make their way to the Royal Alexandra Hospital in Paisley and the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital in Glasgow.

Mairi is also encouraging her customers to knit and crochet bonding squares - tiny blankets infused with mum's scent to help babies who have to spend time in an incubator.

She said: "A lot of my customers have a lot of spare yarn at home and this gives them something lovely to do.

"It's my customers who are doing this - it's all down to them.

"I'm very happy to be a collection point and to hand the donations in but it's my customers who are doing all the work.

"We've been based here for almost a year now and do a lot out in the community.

"I love what I do and want to make sure I give something back."

Mairi hosts a Wednesday morning craft and natter group and also welcomes tutors and fellow experts to her shop to run classes in different knitting and crocheting techniques.

She also accepts donations of used knitting needles and sends them to schools teaching youngsters to knit.

Her local knitting and sewing stars have also helped her raise money for the Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust and Ardgowan Hospice.

Now Mairi's community endeavours have put her in line for the Business Champion of the Year title at this year's Tele community champion awards.

Mairi added: "The nomination is such a surprise.

"It's lovely that the shop is being recognised for what it's doing out in the community.

"Business for me is about trying to get people to use local shops and re-energising the high street.

"There's a real social aspect to crafting.

"When I started out, I knew I wanted the store to be a hub for people to gather together, come in and meet people and have a chat.

"There's a real social aspect to crafting.

"I find that my customers want a physical shop.

"It's nice and colourful, people want to come into the store and I love running it."