Lion Brand Notebook

News, Ideas and Information for Crafting with Yarn

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Archive for April, 2008

The Knitted Mile

April 22nd, 2008

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The Knitted Mile is a project created by fiber artist, Robyn Love, for the exhibition Gestures of Resistance. The exhibition was held at in Dallas Texas, from February 20th to March 22nd.Robyn worked with fifty volunteers to knit a mile-long yellow stripe that was installed in the center of a road in Dallas. The concept was that a knitted median line on a highway interrupts the daily fast-paced movement of life with a lovingly handmade element. Hand-knitting and crafts in general, involve taking ones time and creating one-of-a-kind objects that express our individuality. The exhibition showed that this is an option to mass production, instant gratification and uniformity. The road stripe was knit in garter stitch, 4 inches wide in Vanna’s Choice, mustard color yarn provided by Lion Brand Yarn Company.

Knitted mile installed as yellow line in middle of highway

kmile-longview.jpgKnitted Mile in the trunk of a car on the way to be installed on the road

Seen in the Yarniverse

April 18th, 2008

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Over the past couple of weeks we came across a couple of bloggers who have created some beautiful afghans with our Cotton-Ease yarn.

Bella Dia uses a granny square pattern similar to our Happy Baby Blanket pattern to create her granny square blanket project.
Stardust Shoes takes some yarns and plays around with them to create some VERY cute flowers!

There is also a great group for those of you registered on Ravelry, for people who use Cotton-Ease, called Cotton pickin’. It’s there for anyone and everyone to share Cotton-Ease love and has some wonderful suggestions for new items using the yarn.

Additionally on Bella Dia, she suggests a great way to pick out swatches for upcoming projects using our website.

Lion Visits Etsy

April 17th, 2008

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clocktower building, Etsy

We had a lot of fun visiting Etsy a month ago. David, Zontee, Liz and I went to their offices, located in a beautiful building called the Clocktower in an one of the many areas of New York named with an acronym: Dumbo. That stands for down under the Manhattan Bridge overpass.

Etsy is an online marketplace for buying and selling anything handmade. We did a podcast while we were there and interviewed some of the staff about this phenomenon. We found a very creative group of people and a devotion to customer satisfaction that was impressive. Their site is fun to look at and as crafters, we particularly value anything made by hand.

Etsy featured an exclusive interview with Vanna for their web site.

After our visit, we enjoyed an over-the-top lunch at the famous Junior’s Restaurant.

liz-and-zontee-interview.jpg Etsy offices

Lunch at Juniors

Crocheting the Coral Reef

April 16th, 2008

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The American Museum of Natural History in New York City merged science and art on Tuesday, April 8. Using yarn donated by Lion Brand, they have crocheted an entire coral reef ecosystem and discussed some the current issues facing reefs today, as well as actions that can be taken in the future.

Margaret Wertheim, director of the Institute for Figuring, and Kate Holmes, a marine biologist for AMNH, lead a discussion about the plight of coral reefs, and “hyperbolic crochet,” while touching on handicraft, mathematics, marine ecology, conservation activism, and collective artistic practice.
To learn more about the Institute for Figuring, you can check out the article we wrote in our newsletter.

crocheted coral reef

As someone who is also personally interested in coral reefs and their survivability, I also recently saw an article in The New York Times about some of the efforts being done to rebuild and sustain the reef community. One of these efforts is taking place in Delaware, where they are using old subway cars to create a thriving reef with trains taken from the New York City MTA. It’s very cool!

Five Tips from YarnCraft Podcast #12

April 15th, 2008

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In each episode of our podcast, YarnCraft, we feature a segment called “Stash This–Ideas for Your Crafting Life.” It’s a chance for me and my co-host Liz from our Design Department to share with you some interesting tips about knitting, crocheting, and yarncrafting.

In podcast episode about “Selling Your Knit/Crochet Items on Etsy & Tips on Customizing with Color,” our “Stash This” was about working with color, the meaning of colors, and personalizing patterns. Here are five tips from episode #12:

  1. Don’t be afraid to swap out colors in patterns. Make yourself a chart, noting which color you’ve used for each letter. For example, I might be making the Simple Earthy Squares Afghan, but want to swap out some of the colors. I would write at the top of my pattern to help me remember: Color A = Wood, Color B = Barley, etc.
  2. Choose colors that have personal or cultural meaning for you or your recipient (for example green is always popular for St. Patrick’s Day; red is considered lucky in many Asian cultures), and include a note with gifts that explains the color choices.
  3. Think about colors that look good with your skin-tone or your recipient’s skin-tone. Are you an “autumn” or a “spring”?
  4. A wonderful gift is a birthstone-colored afghan. Homespun is a great yarn for this purpose, because of its jewel-like tones. Take a simple afghan, perhaps one of our 5 1/2 hour afghans, and make it in a color that coordinates with your gift-recipient’s birth month.
  5. Personalize a project by making it in your or your gift recipient’s school or sports team colors.

YarnCraft Podcast

For more ideas, check out the podcast every other Tuesday by visiting, and tell us what are some ways you’ve used colors to personalize a project!