Lion Brand Notebook

News, Ideas and Information for Crafting with Yarn

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5 Tips for Crafting Outside in the Spring and Summer

March 19th, 2012

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Fall and Winter are busy seasons for knitting and crochet; after all, we’d be pretty chilly without the hats, scarves, mittens, sweaters, and cowls that we make every year!

Take your Knitting and Crochet Outside

But what about crafting when it’s warm outside?

These simple tips will help you pick the patterns you’d try this spring and summer, choose the perfect yarns for your  projects, inspire you with some new techniques to try and (most importantly) get you ready to enjoy the warm weather headed your way! (Want to make the flowers in this picture? Click here for the patterns from 100 Flowers to Knit & Crochet by Lesley Stanfield.)

Warm seasons are perfect for smaller projects. Small projects are easier to manage, won’t heat up your lap too much and can be great projects to expand your skill set. Have you ever wanted to try lace, or socks, or even taking up a new yarn craft? Now is the time! Small projects and swatches are also easy to take with you on trips and to work on outdoors.
Plant fibers and blends will keep you comfortable. Lighter yarns made with plant fiber (like  Cotton-Ease and LB Collection Cotton Bamboo) have a cooler hand that makes them easier to work with even in warm or humid climates. Plus, you’ll be able to wear or use projects made in these yarns right away and still stay fresh and cool. For patterns made in yarns like these, click here.
Dyeing yarn is a great project to do outside. If you’ve wanted to try dyeing yarn, now is the time! Get kids and friends involved in the process and play with different colors and fibers. Taking your hot dye baths outside and means you’ll keep your house cooler and reduce your clean-up time! For more dyeing tips, you can click here for help picking the right dye for your yarn, and click here for a guide to dyeing your yarn with Kool-Aid.
Don’t forget about projects for the home.There are lots of projects to make beyond garments. Try a fun beach bag or market bag for errands and family trips, or make some dish cloths or wash cloths to stock up on and give as gifts. Aprons and kitchen projects make perfect host and hostess gifts for picnics and barbeques.
Project bags and pattern protectors are here to help! Taking your yarn outside means leaving behind the supply shelf, so pick out a project bag you love and tuck everything inside. Bringing along a book of patterns or computer may not always be possible, so try printing out a copy of your pattern or making a photocopy. then you can slip it into a plastic page-protector and be ready to go!

Do you celebrate the warmer weather by taking your projects outside? What tips would you share with yarn-lovers who want to craft in the great outdoors? Leave a comment below to share your tips to help others get started!

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  • Amber

    Wasn’t cotton-ease discontinued?

    • Margaret

      Hey Amber! Cotton-Ease was discontinued for a little while, but we brought it back by popular demand!
      You can check out the colors and yarn details here: http://www.lionbrand.com/yarns/newcottonease.html

    • Tess

      I like all of the above suggestions & enjoy crocheting my warm weather projects at the beach.

    • Tess

      I like all of the above suggestions & enjoy crocheting my warm weather projects at the beach.

  • Koyler2000

    I enjoy your yarn and your patterns. Keep the ideas coming.

  • Becky Zsoka

    Make sure to have prescription sunglasses or clip ons so that you don’t drop a stitch!
     

  • Micheleknits

    always place yarn in a plastic bag as I have had run away yarns before. they get dirty fast.

  • Tracilawrence

    I use the grocery store 6-bottle wine bags that are so prevalent (at least out here in California) to keep each smaller crochet project clean and contained. You can have the right hook(s), stitch markers and a few smaller skeins of yarn. It’s a terrific organizer and for storage.

    • Margaret

       I use that exact tip! I was working on a Doctor Who inspired scarf and needed to keep 6 balls of Wool-Ease handy for all the different stripes. The wine bottle bag worked perfectly!

  • Hood1976

    When working at the beach metal needles worked best for me. my favorite bamboo needles did not slide well. they became sticky in the moist heat. I also like working on fingerless gloves during the summer. fast and light weight. great for the hiking trips.

  • Maggiemef

    Every summer, my area has a cancer marathon and crafters are asked to donate pink scarves, any shade of pink will do, so that all participants receive a scarf.  A light colored lacy scarf is easy to tote around and pick up at odd moments to work on it.  

  • Pingback: Perfect Patterns for Your Picnic & BBQ Accessories! | Lion Brand Notebook

  • Kit

    Sometimes I knit outside in the winter too. Either fingerless gloves or convertible mittens are a big help when knitting on sunny but cold days. I don’t knit outside as often or as long in the winter, but if it is sunny and there is not much wind, I will knit for half an hour or so outside down to about 20 degrees Fahrenheit if I am dressed for the weather. That is about my limit. When it gets really cold I only go outside when I have to, and don’t sit around for long enough to get my knitting out.

    I knit outside a lot longer sometimes in the warmer months, and if I want to knit outside when it is hot and I am knitting a big warm project, I usually knit at a table outside, instead of placing the wool sweater or afghan on my lap. That helps me stay cool.

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