Lion Brand Notebook

News, Ideas and Information for Crafting with Yarn

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Our Visit And Photoshoot At Vanna White’s Home

May 29th, 2014

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In this post Lion Brand’s Creative Director Adina Klein shares stories and behind-the-scenes photos from her recent visit to Vanna White’s home near Los Angeles, CA. Joining her were Lion Brand’s Production Coordinator Karlye Mayer and our lovely photographer Jack.

After twenty years, Vanna is definitely part of the Lion Brand family.  Some of us have been to her home and she’s been to ours. Most recently she attended the company barbecue at our New Jersey headquarters. Going to Vanna’s house is more like visiting a friend than visiting a celebrity–well, maybe, except for the fact that her house is nicer than most of our friends’ houses. And even though she has a beautiful home with spectacular views, there’s something so down-to-earth about it–just like Vanna.  Vanna even made us breakfast and let us into her closet to pick clothes for her for the shoot.

You’d think her closet would be filled with glamorous gowns, but it was actually filled with an assortment of jeans, slacks, sweaters and t-shirts! We hung out in her bedroom, playing with her cat, Stella, while she had her hair done. We walked around the house, while she got dressed, looking for great spots to photograph.  In case you couldn’t tell, we felt right at home.  You’d never know she is one of the most well-known celebrities in the world!

One thing we love about Vanna is that she’s always calm, always gracious, and always kind.  It made it a lot easier for us to get great photos of her because she puts everyone at ease.  Now that we’re back home, we’ll be editing the photos and finalizing the patterns for the beautiful afghans and garments we shot and soon you’ll see the results of the day we spent with Vanna.


Eight Arms to Love You With: My Daughter’s Halloween Costume

October 30th, 2013

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costume

My daughter loves octopuses (or is it octopi?) and is almost never caught without holding one of her 7 stuffed octopuses or wearing one of her growing closet of socks and tees.  When I saw this pattern for an octopus costume there was no contest as to what she wanted to be.  She got so excited and immediately asked that it be made in her favorite colors: purple and “lellow” (yellow) with pink spots.

Crocheting the entire thing would be a feat that would’ve taken more than a month’s planning.  And while I could quilt, the pattern was beyond my skill level.  Thankfully Jackie, our Technical Editor, was an expert seamstress and offered to help out.   Since I love creating new things using yarn, I wanted to add some personal handmade touches.

But I also didn’t want it to be just handmade – I wanted it to sparkle and glitter.

When I first saw the pattern I immediately wanted crocheted medallions for the suckers and the spots.
Vanna’s Glamour fit perfectly with what I wanted, and her mustard gold yarn went well with the deep purple velvet fabric.  Soon I was swept up in a creative moment and started picking out more colors like light gold and pink, which would give the costume a cool, colorful, and textured look.  Even Michala, our Design intern, found it so adorable that she also wanted to assist.  Since I knew she was fast crocheter, I asked if she could make some medallions whenever she had free time.

By the time I looked away, I found a pile of medallions of varying sizes already on the table.  She even had extra time to crochet the eyes and a pink bow too!

Then I saw Martha Stewarts CraftsTM/MC Glitter Eyelash yarn and it all came together.  The sparkly polka dots, the giant eyes with purple eyelashes, even the pink bow on its head. When I showed my daughter the finished product she couldn’t wait to get it on her.

Michala crocheting away The growing pile of octopus spots Sewing it altogether
Michala crocheting away The growing pile of octopus spots Sewing it altogether.

The only bad (or good) part will be trying to take it off her once Halloween’s over.


Meet Our New Creative Director

October 9th, 2013

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I’ve been a knitter, a shop girl at my LYS, the editor in chief of Vogue Knitting and Knit. 1 Magazine, and now, as Creative Director of Lion Brand and my motto has always
been “Fun to Knit and Fun to Wear.”

I didn’t start out in the hand-knitting industry. I studied writing and film at Oberlin and after college I worked as an assistant editor on feature films. I took time off from the grueling hours of independent film post-production to write my first screenplay,
“Knit 1 Purl 2.” I was an avid knitter, making about a sweater
a week, and got a part time job at my favorite LYS to keep me sane while I worked on the script. The late, great Melissa Matthay owned the shop and taught me how to design, combine yarns and create fun, easy garments for our clients. I remember the two of us squealing with joy as the new yarns arrived and we immediately would start swatching. We loved combining yarns to create different textures in simple but chic, over-sized silhouettes that looked good on all our customers: big, little, old, young.

 Our new Creative Director, Adian, and her daughter
Pictured: our new creative director, Adina, and her daughter.

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