Lion Brand Notebook

News, Ideas and Information for Crafting with Yarn

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Crochet a Cozy Cowl in No Time with the Crafty Gemini!

February 19th, 2015

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flattering cowl
It’s the middle of February, and many of us in the Northeast are still getting plenty of snow, cold, and wind – so it’s the perfect time to get out those hooks (or needles) and work on something warm and cozy.

The Flattering Cowl is a popular pattern that’s easy to make, and super snuggly because it’s made with Lion Brand’s plush Homespun® Thick & Quick® yarn. It’s definitely a gratifying project because it works up quickly; you can easily finish this cowl in one day.

You’ll love the feel of Homespun® Thick & Quick® as it keeps you nice and toasty in this super bulky cowl. Watch the video below for a tutorial that’s great for beginners. Vanessa, from the Crafty Gemini, shares tips and tricks for working on this cowl, and offers advice for creating different variations. Enjoy!

:: can’t see the video above? click here: http://youtu.be/lsuM-bx7f6o ::


Win a Copy of Crochet Red: Crocheting for Women’s Heart Health and 10 Skeins of Vanna’s Choice

February 13th, 2015

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Crochet Red Giveaway Image

Health and wellness are topics we cover here quite often. Today we’re recognizing National Heart Month with a giveaway! Enter now for a chance to win one copy of Crochet Red: Crocheting for Women’s Heart Health, and 10 skeins of Vanna’s Choice® to make a Mitered Throw, one of the patterns featured in the book!

Laura Zander, owner of Jimmy Beans Wool, worked with Sixth and Spring Books on the Stitch Red book series to raise awareness around heart disease and preventive heart health in general. A portion of each book sale goes towards HeartTruth®, a public awareness program sponsored by the National Institutes of Health.

Crochet Red is filled with beautiful crochet projects, each paired with a heartwarming story from a prominent face within the crochet world, including our beloved Vanna White. She wrote one of the forewords for the book, and also shares some of her healthy lifestyle tips.

One lucky winner will be chosen to win the prize pack: the book and 10 skeins of Vanna’s Choice® yarn — please see below for details.

This giveaway is now CLOSED

Congrats to Jeanne C! We hope you like the book and yarn.

Rules and Guidelines:

1. Entries must be received by February 20, 11:59p.m. EST

2. US entries only

3. Must be 18 and over to enter.

4. One person per entry

 


2 Ways to Start a Circle in Crochet from Dora Ohrenstein

February 12th, 2015

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Learn 2 Methods for Crocheting a Circle

Thanks to our friends over at Storey Publishing, we’re sharing a handy excerpt from Dora Ohrenstein’s latest book, The Crocheter’s Skill-Building Workshop (The Essential Techniques for Becoming a More Versatile, Adventurous Crocheter).

Dora’s latest book features numerous tips on gauge, crochet shaping and construction, colorwork and more – so we suggest that you go ahead and check out the book in its entirety, you’ll be glad you did.

In the meantime, have a look at the excellent excerpt below. Coupled with instructional photos, you’ll quickly and easily learn two different methods for starting a crochet circle – a ring with chains and the magic circle.

Try them out to see which method you like best!


Starting the Circle

There are several different ways to begin working in the round. You can make several chains (the most common method), make an adjustable ring, or use the first chain as a ring. Let’s look at the first two.

Make a Ring with Chains

To make a ring with chains, work several chains, then slip stitch in the first chain to form a ring. The number of chains is determined by how many stitches you intend to work into the ring and how tightly you want the ring to close. If you are following a pattern, the number of chains will be specified. Supposing, however, that you are working a hat pattern, and after working the specified number of chains and stitches in the first round, you find you have a larger hole at the center than you’d like. Go ahead and try again with fewer chains: it will cause no harm whatsoever. For other items worked in the round, such as motifs and flowers, the size of the “hole” at the center can make a difference, as it affects the overall size of the finished piece. In these instances, it’s wise to stick with the instructions as written.

Ring with chains

(more…)


Crochet Un Gorro Fácil Con un Pompón: Un Tutorial en Español (Crochet an Easy Hat with a Pompon, A Tutorial in Spanish)

February 11th, 2015

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Hoy, tenemos un vídeo tutorial para usted completamente en Español de Yolanda Soto-Lopez de el canal All Crafts Channel en Youtube.  Nos dimos cuenta de lo popular que ha sido el tutorial de “Simple Crochet Shrug” con subtitulos de Yolanda, y quisimos probar un nuevo vídeo sólo en español.

Miren como Yolanda le muestra como tejer un gorro fácil  con un pompón!

~ ~ ~

Translation: Today, we have a video tutorial for you completely in Spanish from Yolanda Soto-Lopez from the All Crafts Channel on Youtube. We noticed how popular Yolanda’s Simple Crochet Shrug tutorial with subtitles has been, so we wanted to try a new video only in Spanish.

Watch as Yolanda shows you, in Spanish, how to crochet an easy hat with a pompom!


6 Fast-Finish Crochet Cowls: a #Scarfie Roundup!

January 27th, 2015

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Over the past few months, we’ve shared #scarfie projects from many of our favorite bloggers who all used Wool-Ease® Thick & Quick® to design beautiful cowls, most of which require only one or two balls.

I put together a collection of their wonderful #scarfie projects in case you missed any. They’re all simple crochet patterns that even a beginner crocheter will be able to understand and work through. So take a gander and see which one fits your style!

P.S: We encourage you to share photos of your handmade scarf or cowl projects by tagging @LionBrandYarn and using the hashtag, #scarfie. You’ll have the chance to be featured in our #scarfie gallery on Facebook!

Repeat Crafter Me 2 ResizedRepeat Crafter Me
Crochet Hooded Cowl in Fig and Fisherman
Maybe Matilda Scarfie 2 resizedMaybe Matilda
Chunky Scalloped Cowl in Grass
All About Ami resized
All About Ami
Twist Cowl in Sandstone
PetalstoPicots Scarfie 2 resizedPetals to Picots
Quick & Comfy Crochet Scarf in Oatmeal
Moogly Scarf 2 resizedMoogly Blog
Stormy Weather Cowl in Fig and Charcoal
Crafty GeminiScarfie 2 resized
Crafty Gemini
Uptown Circle Scarfie in Eggplant

 


6 Knit & Crochet Hats Perfect for Playing in the Snow!

January 22nd, 2015

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Perfect Hats 2We haven’t had much snow here in NYC, but plenty of folks throughout the country and in Canada have already woken up to blankets of it. If you’re lucky enough to simply enjoy a snow day, why not bundle up, grab your sled, board, or skis, and have fun in snow!

January is peak ski season, so it’s a safe bet that many of you are hitting the slopes or out tobogganing. As knitters and crocheters, I’m sure you’ve donned some form of handmade knitwear while enjoying winter activities. Hats are great accessories for snow activities because they keep you warm, and can help friends and family spot you in a crowd or at the bottom of a hill.

To celebrate winter and having fun in the white, vibrant snow, I’ve rounded up six hat patterns that’ll help you stand out from the masses.

Bright and Cheery: You’ll be easy to spot in these vibrant colors!

Knit Basic Hat
in Unique (Cornucopia)
Ribbed Slouchy Hat and Cowl
Ribbed Slouchy Hat
(and Cowl)
in Hometown USA (Albuquerque Orange, Memphis Blues)
Crochet Over the Rainbow Hat
in Unique (Circus)

Stylish & Sophisticated: Neutral Colors with Fun Details

Animal Lover Hat
in Vanna’s Glamour (Onyx, Gold)
Toboggan Hat
Toboggan Hat
in Wool-Ease Thick & Quick (Fisherman – Love this style, but I suggest a different color)
Glitter Blizzard HatGlitter Blizzard Hat
in Gold Leaf (Black/Gold)

What type of handmade items do you like to wear (or make for others) for enjoying snow activities? Share with us in the comments!


Hand Therapy for Knitters: Tips and Techniques for Hand Health

January 14th, 2015

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Colette Hand Massage image
We’re excited to have Colette Smith stop by the Lion Brand Yarn booth (Booth #213, 5th floor) at Vogue Knitting Live NYC this weekend to demonstrate Hand Therapy for Knitters. Colette is a knitter, knitting instructor and fiber artist whose work you’ve likely seen at other fiber art shows. Colette knits beautiful, mythical dragons with yarn and other materials and her work will be on display in the gallery area of VK Live (5th floor). She’ll also be present at the Lion Brand booth on Saturday and Sunday to demonstrate hand massage techniques to help alleviate hand and nerve pain.

After consulting with doctors, acupuncturists, and massage therapists, Colette discovered and perfected useful massages for her hands using a rubber bounce ball – the kind you find in toy dispensers at the supermarket!

We hope to see you at our booth on January 17th and 18th to receive a ball and learn the techniques for yourself!

  • Saturday, January 17th: 12:30-1:30pm
  • Sunday, January 18th: 10:30-11:30am

Click here to see Colette talk about some of her massage techniques.

Colette Hand Massage video clip image


Arm Knit a Chunky Cowl in 30 Minutes or Less with Vanessa from the Crafty Gemini!

January 12th, 2015

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Now that the holidays are over, you might find that you have extra time to craft for yourself. Why not learn how to arm knit a cowl?

Arm knitting continues to increase in popularity because it’s so quick and easy to complete a wearable project; a scarf or cowl will take an average of 30 minutes to make! Once you get the hang of the process, you’ll realize how fun arm knitting is, and maybe you’ll want to try experimenting with different colors and styles.

In her newest tutorial for Lion Brand, Vanessa from the Crafty Gemini demonstrates the arm knitting process for you to follow along. She even includes some slow-motion shots in the video, ensuring that you’ll understand the process so that you can successfully create your own cowl with Wool-Ease® Thick & Quick® in 30 minutes or less!

(editor’s note: The contest mentioned in the video is now over. Stay close, there will be more opportunities to win yarn from Lion Brand and The Crafty Gemini.)

Watch the video below!

 

Check out some more styles of arm knit cowls in Wool-Ease® Thick & Quick®!

Arm Knit Cowl
Quick Arm Knit Cowl
2 color arm knit cowl
Arm Knit Cowl
Pumpkin, Raspberry, and Fig
Quick Arm Knit Cowl
Grey Marble
2 Color Arm Knit Cowl
Claret and Hoosiers

 


Hooked on Scarves: Enter to Win Lisa Gentry’s New eBook and a Skein of Homespun®

January 9th, 2015

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Knit and crochet designer Lisa Gentry is the creative talent behind Hook and Needle Designs and she’s just created an eBook featuring 20 crochet scarf patterns — perfect timing, since winter has definitely arrived!

The scarf patterns in this book are suited to those who want more decorative, stylish scarves featuring openwork, and of course, there are bulkier versions perfect for braving the winter cold. Thanks to Lisa, we have 5 copies of her eBook to give away, AND each winner will also receive a skein of Homespun® to complete the Sweet Sixteen Scarf (pictured below – right). Information to enter is below, good luck!

eBook-giveaway
Rules and Guidelines:
1. Entries must be received by January 16th, 11:59p.m. EST
2. Must be 18 and over to enter.
3. One person per entry

»Click Here« to enter the giveaway if the form below does not work for you.


Join Lion Brand at Vogue Knitting LIVE NYC, January 16-18!

January 7th, 2015

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January is here and that means Vogue Knitting LIVE! The popular three-day event takes place at the Marriott Marquis in Times Square, New York, January 16th through 18th. Visit us at booth #221 for book signings and exciting demonstrations (scroll down for schedule and details).

We’re also thrilled to announce that our fabulous 7 Wonders of the Yarn World art exhibit will be on display to the public for the first time!

Designed by fiber artist Nathan Vincent, each sculpture of the 7 Wonders of The Yarn World represents a different technique found in knit or crochet (cables, colorwork, textures and more). The installations stand about 5 feet high or taller, and include marvels such as the Great Wall of China crocheted with granny squares, an embellished knit Taj Mahal, a lace crocheted Leaning Tower of Pisa, a crocheted Sphinx, and more.

You don’t want to miss this incredible display. Be sure to stop by the 5th floor art gallery to see these 7 Wonders of The Yarn World!

ALSO, stop by our booth on Saturday to get a free hand massage demonstration from fiber artist Colette Smith (12:30pm), and be sure to visit us on Sunday for book and DVD signings from legends such as Dora Ohrenstein, Lily Chin, and Margaret Hubert. Plus- we’ve got an extra special giveaway for the first 50 attendees to stop by the booth on Friday!

Meet these lovely women at our booth!:

colette smith head shot resized
Lily Chin HS2
Dora Ohrenstein3 Margaret Hubert edit
Hand Therapy for Knitters; a hands on demo by Colette Smith (designer of Colette’s Gardens) Watch techniques to be demonstrated here!

Sat: 12:30-1:30pm

Sun: 10:30-11:30pm

Lily Chin will be signing copies of the following DVDs:- Join As You Go CrochetJoin As You Go KnittingTwo Color Circular Tunisian Crochet 

Sun: 11:30-12pm

 

Dora Ohrenstein will be signing copies of her newest release, The Crocheter’s Skill-Building Workshop.

Sun: 12:30-1pm

 Margaret Hubert signing copies of The Complete Photo Guide to Knitting (2nd edition) and The Complete Photo Guide to Crochet (2nd edition)

Sun: 1:30-2pm

 

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