Here in New York, we’ve all been really excited as we get ready for the Lion Brand Yarn Studio’s grand opening on November 18th. It has also been great to see all of the buzz from knitters and crocheters online too!
For all of you who can’t wait for the Studio to open, here’s just a little sneak peek into the space:
That’s not all though! Can’t wait until November 18th? Lion Brand Notebook aficionados and E-Newsletter subscribers are invited to two EXCLUSIVE preview days! Come visit the Studio BEFORE the general public!
November 9th, from 12 pm to 5 pm
November 13th, from 12 pm to 7 pm
Click here and print out your admittance ticket, redeemable for a special gift when you come for the preview days!
Almost 3,000 of you submitted funny, quirky, and clever captions for our Lola Halloween Contest. We enjoyed reading them so much that we couldn’t pick just one first place winner, so we are happy to announce TWO winners!
FIRST PLACE WINNERS:
Cindy of Ocala, FL:
Suzanne of Parrish, FL:
Both ladies will each get a $100 gift certificate for use on the Lion Design catalog and LionBrand.com!
I know I may not look at it, but I am definitely “sport-weight,” so no snide comments!
– Debora of Eatontown, NJ
Gimme that candy! I’ve got a concealed knitting needle and I ain’t afraid to use it!
– Irma of Cypress, TX
It’s as close to looking like Vanna as I’m going to get!
– Jessica of Cincinnati, OH
I’m just not thin enough to dress as a knitting needle.
– Debra of Middletown, RI
I promised the neighborhood I wouldn’t knit my costume this year…
– Lyz of Marshall, MN
All the honorable mentions will receive a copy of Lion Brand Vintage Styles for Today!
Congratulations to all of the winners, and thank you to everyone who participated! Just a reminder that in the case of duplicate submissions, only the first person to submit the caption was eligible to win.
Want Lola in your mailbox? Subscribe to our E-Newsletter and get Lola every other week!
My approach to most of my knitting and crocheting projects is to design it myself and to play it by ear — I like knowing the gist of how to make something, so that I can make my own version, customized to my needs. Earlier this month, I wrote about how to knit a basic hat. In today’s post, I’m going to give you directions for crochet a basic beanie. Of course, as with all things, there is more than one way to do it, but I think that these directions will give you a good basis.
You will need:
Here’s how to do it:
Following these steps, you get a solid hat, similar to the one above. A hat like this is also good for practicing working in the round, which is useful for many of our amigurumi animals.
The great thing about a basic pattern like this is that you can do so much with it. Make stripes instead of only using one color. Switch out the single crochets for half-double crochets or double-crochets. Alternate stitch patterns. Add a pom-pom on top. Add earflaps. Cross-stitch a design on top of your basic hat. You could even use these steps to create a beret by making the base circle larger than the circumference of your head , then decreasing until you get to the circumference of your head (that you wrote down in step #3), and then working a band in a contrasting stitch pattern for the brim.
Now that you have the basic tools, get creative and make the hat that you’ve always wanted!
Of course, we always have many great hat patterns for knitters, crocheters, and loom-knitters available on LionBrand.com, for those who prefer traditional patterns. (You can also click on the Wool-Ease Thick & Quick hat pictured above, if you’d like that exact pattern.)
In the most recent episode of our audio-podcast, YarnCraft, my co-host Liz and I chat about great toys for kids of every age, as well as toys for our furry friends. We also share an interview with Nicky Epstein, who tells us all about her love of knitting and crocheting for Barbie! Click here to listen [MP3].
Here’s a sneak peak at 5 fast patterns we discuss in the episode:
And join us next Tuesday for our next episode, when we talk about great gift ideas for the holiday season!
Jacqueline, a knitting friend from Arizona, sent us this picture of a Pom Pom Tree that was inspired by the Pom Pom rug on the cover of our Fall 2008 catalog (shown below). She donated the yarn and the Pom Pom maker to residents of a nursing home in France, and they came up with this idea.
The Instructables Craft Skills Contest was so much fun! There were tons of amazingly creative entries ranging from furniture to lighting to notebooks to the yarncrafts. Congratulations to the winner, SFHandyman, for his great Instructable on multi-strand finger loop braiding. You know, you could even use this technique to make friendship bracelets, ropes, belts, and so much more! Try it with Wool-Ease Thick and Quick for a totally different way to create a scarf or belt*!
The contest also received some great yarncrafting entries. Check out the tutorials on knitting cables, knitting picot edges, felting, changing yarn when crocheting, and making stitch markers. A really funny one is on how to crochet a mustache hat costume, with Homespun yarn!
If you enjoyed those entries, don’t forget that you still have time to enter the DIY Halloween Contest going on now at Instructables.com!
I’ve never seen so much yarn in my life. We’ve been working from sun up to sun down to get the Studio ready. In the last week over 120 cases of yarn have walked though our front door…that’s a lot of yarn! Yesterday we got most of the yarn up on the shelves. It’s beginning to look exciting around here.
Speaking of “we,” I thought I’d take this opportunity to introduce some of the team you’ll be meeting at the Lion Brand Yarn Studio.
James is the former owner of the beautiful Woodstock Wool Company. We are so lucky to have him. Originally from Minnesota, James loves color and has a soft spot for double pointed needles.
Will recently moved from Washington State, where he has been working in yarn stores since he was a teenager. Will loves Fair Isle; knitting socks on two circular needles and is not afraid to steek (a fear I am committed to getting over this year . . . taking scissors to my knitting still makes me break out in a cold sweat!)
Tracey was a dancer who has worked with Alvin Ailey. She’s a passionate crocheter and knitter who has taught knitting & crochet at FIT (Fashion Institute of Technology, here in New York City). Tracey has spent the last week drooling over Vanna’s Glamour and Lion Wool.
Michelle comes to us from Washington D.C., where she had extensive event management experience. A sock knitter who has a freaky memory for color names, Michelle also loves to crochet, and she can knit a mean swatch.
As for me, I love cables & lace, and do everything on circular needles. I also love to felt!
So that’s a little bit about us. We can’t wait to meet all of you and find out about YOUR yarncrafting!
The results of our presidential poll are in. With 8,975 9,009 9,550 people voting, here is the breakdown:
John McCain – 40.3%
Barack Obama – 56.0%
Other – 1.5%
Undecided – 2.2%
Are you starting to knit or crochet for the holidays? This year, add one more special gift to your to-do list.
Save the Children and Warm Up America! Foundation have teamed up for the Knit One, Save One initiative. This project asks knitters and crocheters to donate homemade hats for infants in developing countries. Just one hat is enough to save a child’s life.
Join celebrities (and yarncrafters!) Julia Roberts, Gwyneth Paltrow, Rebecca Romijn (Ugly Betty), Debra Messing (Starter Wife), Lisa Edelstein (House), Patricia Arquette (Medium), Vera Farmiga, and Mischa Barton in this effort to help children internationally. As the children receiving the caps are often low birth-weight, caps should be on the smaller side. A circumference of 9 to 11 inches is ideal, but any size will be accepted. Any soft, washable yarn can be used. Donations will be accepted until December 31, 2008.
To find out more information, get patterns, see more celebrity hats, donate a hat of your own, or write a personal note to the next President asking him to help, visit the Save the Children website.
For most projects, it’s important to keep track of your stitches. If you’re like me, you use stitch markers and stitch counters — or you make a tally in the margin of your pattern. If you love technology, then there’s a new way to track your stitches on your iPhone or iPod Touch: the free StitchMinder application.
This handy little program keeps track of your stitches, rows, increases, and decreases. The developer Quilt2Go’s website notes, “Counters can be configured to count upwards or downwards, and your counts are always stored when you close the program or if you are interrupted by a phone call.” How convenient!
You can check out the StitchMinder at the Quilt2Go website.
How do you keep track of your stitches?