Lion Brand Notebook

News, Ideas and Information for Crafting with Yarn

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Archive for March, 2013


Get a Little Irrational: It’s Pi Day!

March 14th, 2013

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Okay, so maybe you haven’t heard of National Ear Muff Day, which just passed yesterday, but if you’ve been anywhere near a secondary school math classroom in the last decade–or have math nerd friends like I do–you’ve probably heard a thing or two about Pi Day. The Reader’s Digest Version? It’s March 14–3/14–and Pi, the irrational number that is related to the circumference and diameter of a circle, is approximately equal to 3.14, though the decimal places are though to go on forever. You can learn a little more about Pi here, or you can just dive in to some of the fun mathematical-themed knitting and crochet patterns I found on Ravelry to celebrate Pi.

 Knit Irrational Scarf by Anne Bruvold Knit Pi Digits Scarf by Christina J
   
Knit Pi Dish Towel by Shannon Servesko  Crochet Amigurumi Pi by Alicia Kachmar

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Keep Those Ears Warm on National Earmuff Day!

March 13th, 2013

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Every day is some kind of holiday, and I’m not talking about the big ones with leprechauns or bunnies. It turns out, today is National Earmuff Day, which obviously means I need to share some of my favorite ear-warming patterns with you. The good news is that all of these patterns are quick to knit or crochet, so you can whip them up in an evening and use them to keep your ears warm in the last dwindling days of cool winter and early spring weather. What do you say?

 Image of <font color=red>Ear</font><font color=red>muff</font>s Image of Ribbed Headband  Image of Beginner's  Braided Headband
 Crochet Earmuffs in Extra Soft Wool Blend and Glitter Eyelash Crochet Ribbed Headband in Amazing  Knit Braided Headband in Wool-Ease Thick & Quick

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Unlock the Secrets of Crochet Cables

March 12th, 2013

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Crochet Celtic Afghan

Knitting teacher and author Heather Lodinsky joins us for another article on the wonderful world of cables. Click here to read her previous blog post on knitting cables.

Creating cables with yarn may conjure thoughts of knitting—but did you know that this magic twisting of stitches can be worked in crochet?  Last month, we explored how cables in knitting are created by the use of a cable needle to change the order of stitches and to shape the resulting left or right twist of the cable.   The first time I saw a crochet cable pattern, I thought there must be a complicated technique  to “twist” stitches that were already worked.  In knitting, cables are made rearranging the order of “live” stitches (ones that are not bound off, or finished).  So, with the exception of the one loop on your crochet hook, how do you create a cable with stitches that are already finished?  The answer lies in how you work each stitch and in which order they will be worked in a given row.

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Advanced Crochet Techniques Part Two: Colorwork

March 11th, 2013

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In celebration of National Crochet Month, I’ll be featuring advanced crochet techniques each Monday on the Notebook. Missed last week’s feature on Tunisian crochet? Check it out here.

No matter what you call it–colorwork, tapestry crochet, fair isle, intarsia, jacquard or otherwise–the art of working a design into the fabric of a crocheted product simply by changing colors is a skill that never gets tired. Though intarsia has long been popular in Scandinavian-inspired knitwear, especially sweaters in rich neutrals, it is a method that lends itself to nearly any personal style, from formal and traditional to the fun, “geeky” project a friend is doing with the logos of favorite video games. Whether you seek to create a colorful abstract jacquard pattern or really want a blanket with your favorite sports team’s logo stitched in, learning colorwork is the way to get there.

As difficult as it may look, the great news about colorwork–which is most typically called tapestry when talking about crochet–is that it’s a relatively easy skill to learn, and only requires the patience of changing colors multiple times and following a chart as opposed to a typical pattern.

step2 colorwork  All you have to do to change a color mid-row is to crochet your stitch except for the last yarn over and pull through.
step1 colorwork The last yarn over will be with your new color, and you’ll pull that color through the two loops left on your hook from the previous color.
step3 colorwork Once you’ve linked that new yarn in, you’ll continue crocheting as you had previously.Just don’t forget to weave those ends in as you would any other end to ensure your treasured project doesn’t unravel!

Now that you know the basics of how to change colors in crochet, take a look at some of these crochet blocks from stitch finder that will put those skills to work!
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12 Shrugs for All Ages and Styles

March 10th, 2013

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As we head into spring, there are more days when you need to start and end the day with a light sweater, but you may want it to be something easy to throw on and off as necessary. That, to me, is quintessential shrug weather. Relatively quick to knit or crochet, they’re great projects for “just because” gifts. Make one for your best friend, your mother, your goddaughter, or your niece. Whip one up for your little girl, your sister, or your coworker.

Whether their style is earthy and simple, a little glitzy, or fancy, we have patterns that are just right for them.

6 Stylish Shrugs for Women

Image of Acorn Shrug Image of Crowded Cable Shrug Image of Sparkling Shrug
Crochet Acorn Shrug Knit Crowded Cable Shrug Knit Sparkling Shrug
Image of Stockinette Stitch Shrug Image of Glittery Shrug Image of Simple Crochet Shrug
Knit Stockinette Stitch Shrug Crochet Glittery Shrug Simple Crochet Shrug

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