Lion Brand Notebook

News, Ideas and Information for Crafting with Yarn

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Archive for May, 2010

Did You Know…? Vanna’s Choice Colors Are Meant to Mix and Match

May 26th, 2010

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Vanna’s Choice yarns are great to work with and easy care, but did you know that all the colors were expertly designed to go with each other?  Jess and I decided to test the theory, and using Vanna’s Choice and Vanna’s Choice Baby we came up with over ten different color palettes!  The options are endless, but these few color combinations are a great jumping off point.  You can use them as they are, or pick as many colors as you need from each.

We started with the basics (note: captions list colors in order from left to right, top to bottom):

Then we picked palettes based off of individual colors (Greens, Neutrals, and Pinks):

Silver Blue, Silver Grey, Charcoal Grey, Dark Grey Heather, Navy,  Pearl Mist, Wheat, Oatmeal, Grey Marble, Barley, Taupe, Chocolate Cake,  Toffee, Chocolate, and Espresso

Silver Blue, Silver Grey, Charcoal Grey, Dark Grey Heather, Navy, Pearl Mist, Wheat, Oatmeal, Grey Marble, Barley, Taupe, Chocolate Cake, Toffee, Chocolate, and Espresso

Dusty Purple, Dusty Rose, Antique Rose, Pink, Rose, Lullaby Pink

Then we picked color themes (Muted, Deep, Brights):

Purple, Dusty Blue, Taupe, Rust, Mustard, Honey, Antique Rose, Dusty Rose, Dusty Purple, Dusty Green

Rust, Olive, Pea Green, Cranberry, Wildberry, Burgundy

Magenta, Sapphire, Fern, Scarlet, Mustard, and Berrylicious

We also picked seasonal colors (Winter, Spring, Summer, and Autumn):

Charcoal Grey, Dusty Blue, Navy, Purple, Espresso, Olive, Burgundy, and Cranberry

Little Boy Blue, Lamb, Toffee, Ducky, Sweet Pea, Magenta, Dusty Rose, and Fern

Angel White, Mustard, Terracotta, Pea Green, Mint, Pink Poodle, Cheery Cherry, Eggplant, Sapphire, and Aqua

Rust, Mustard, Toffee, Cranberry, Pea Green, Brick, Terracotta

You could also make your own entirely different Vanna’s Choice combos or themes.  No matter what colors you pick from the line, they always look perfect together.  The Vanna’s Choice Fan Club on Ravelry picks color themes and does swaps, knowing that no matter what they end up with, it’ll match perfectly.  What are you favorite Vanna’s Choice color combos?

Spotted: A Crochet Bike in NYC

May 25th, 2010

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I was walking through the Lower East Side of New York City when I spotted this bike, completely covered in crochet. Notice that even the kick-stand and wheels are completely covered!

I’m not sure where it came from or why it was there, but it was a fun sight that reminded me of the surprising places you can come across yarn art.

In what unexpected places have you spotted yarn? Let us know by leaving a comment!

Updated: Turns out the bike is a piece by Olek, a Brooklyn-based crochet artist who works in colorful crochet, creating arresting moments of pop colors in the urban landscape!

Washcloths: A Great Way To Satisfy The Urge To Knit and Crochet In Warmer Months

May 21st, 2010

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We have recently started our “washcloth of the week” series in our newsletter, The Weekly Stitch.  (If you don’t already get it, click here to get started signing up.) Just to give you an idea that washcloths can be an interesting and beautiful project, here are a two highly rated examples (click the photos to go to the patterns):

If you are visiting a friend during the summer, celebrating a birthday, anniversary or housewarming, a gift set that includes washcloths in a beautiful basket or box, accompanied by some luxurious soaps or bath products makes a thoughtful, personalized gift.  Just select the colors that you think would work for your friend’s decor.

We would love to hear about any ideas that you have for gifting washcloths!

Fantastic Feedback

May 18th, 2010

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One of the best things about sharing stories in our newsletter is reading the amazing feedback we receive. After reading The Wonder of Knitting, Lois O. wrote a touching email to author Michelle Edwards. She has given us permission to share her fantastic note with you. Thank you, Lois, for your letter and your fantastic outreach work.

KnittingI read your memo on the Lion Brand site, and it put a lump in my throat.

I learned to knit at and early age, and was taught by my Grandmother.  I fell in love with knitting, and over several years, made several afghans, hats scarves, etc, most of which were given away to friends and relatives.  Someplace along the line I quit knitting, as it seemed like work, instead of having fun.  After turning the ripe old age of 55, I joined an organization that matches senior citizens with needs of the community.  Everything from knitting , crocheting, making quilts, calling daily to check on seniors, reading to children-and the list goes on.

The organization is called RSVP (Retired Senior Volunteer Program).  They ask citizens, companies, yarn shops etc. to donate yarn, and each skein is turned into something not only useful but needed.  I remember being asked if I would like to help start a knitting group.  Why I answered yes, I do not know but it has turned out to be one of the best things not only in my life but many others as well.

We started out with 3 women, we now have about 12 that consistently come every Wednesday morning-sometimes more-as we squeeze a little closer and always make room for another.  We have become a group that not only is doing something for someone else-WE ARE HAVING FUN!  We knit, talk, and of course eat, as someone always brings treats.  We have been through the highs and lows together-from new grandchildren, surgeries, and death.

As you can imagine we have laughed and cried together, and from all this we have become like a family-and all due to our love of knitting.  I would love to tell someone who is saying gee I always wanted to kit, but I’m either too old, or I wouldn’t have time-to just give it a try!  It may the best thing you could not only do for yourself, but be able to pass some love on to someone you not only don’t know, and probably never will. What a joyous thing!!  I will think of you looking out your window when I pick up my needles, with a smile on my face.

With love to you, and all the knitters who make a difference in this world of ours, and they probably don’t even know it.

– Lois

Turning Industrial Yarn Spools Into Light Fixtures

May 17th, 2010

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I think that one of the fun things that happens when you work in the yarn industry is that you start developing a real affinity for vintage yarn-related tools and machines, and when you see them, you get excited. Two years ago, Jack and I were up at the Knit & Crochet Show in Manchester, New Hampshire (a show we will be again attending in July!), and one of the coolest parts of that trip was all of the vintage knitting and yarn machines found in restaurants, stores, and hotels as decorative items.

It’s always amazing to me to see how people use these old tools in new ways, so while I was browsing one of my favorite eco-design blogs, I was happy to see these yarn spools, used for dyeing yarns, recycled into lighting fixtures!

Designed by Italian company, Re+, they reuse these yarn spools (which are made of 100% recyclable plastic) as the light’s casing and come with LED bulbs that last 40,000 hours! How cool is that!

Via Inhabitat.

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