Lion Brand Notebook

News, Ideas and Information for Crafting with Yarn

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10 Things We’re Doing Besides Knitting & Crocheting

February 27th, 2015

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Here in the marketing department at Lion Brand, we talk a lot about knitting and crocheting and yarn and magic loops and swatches and yarn weights (we know our DK from our super bulky) and and and … bottom line is that we’re all experts in one way or another when it comes yarn. We can talk about it all day — and we do! You may however be surprised to know that we’re also fairly well-rounded with an excess of interests, hobbies and obsessions that go beyond the hooks and needles.

We thought you might enjoy a peek into our inner worlds. Have fun and please share some of your own personal interests outside of knitting and crocheting in the comments below.

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destiny_zoeZoe: I’ve been playing Destiny, a futuristic first-person shooter from the creators of Halo. My Warlock alter ego finally acquired the elusive Gjallarhorn and is well on the way to becoming legend. With so many minions of darkness to destroy, it’s tough choosing between needles and controller!

Sarah: Sunday mornings, I’m curling up with a cup of tea and a Rehab Addict marathon on HGTV. My favorite weekend breakfast sandwich: Spread half an avocado onto a toasted everything bagel and top with three slices of bacon (I cook my bacon in the oven like Ina’s recipe to avoid a greasy kitchen). During the week, instead of knitting on the subway, I like to listen to podcasts. My favorite at the moment is 99 Percent Invisible which is a podcast about design. It covers things that you wouldn’t expect like the origins of the sports mascot, buildings that once housed Pizza Huts, and the way airports are laid out  to get you to buy food. I love learning these fun facts!

newgirlShira: Being a single lady in the city and Brand ambassador for Lion brand Yarn, my social life has definitely  taken off. I no longer have time for one of my favorite things to do … hang out with my two cats Psy and Thai and catch up some really good TV like the New Girl, or another one we love Scandal.  If I try to knit while I watch TV, the kitties try to help, but their version of “help” is not really helping so watching TV is like a mini-vacation from my Yarn life.

Petrina: I’m trying to brighten up my apartment more and find myself getting into gardening. Recently my in-laws gave me some paperwhites as a gift and I planted them a few weeks ago so they’re just starting to bloom now – just in time for spring!

kale_brandyceBrandyce: I’ve been doing a lot of cooking lately, and since it’s so cold here in the northeast, soups have definitely been a favorite of mine. I recently came across this Butternut Squash Quinoa and Kale Stew recipe from Love and Lemons, and it was great! I also added Mushrooms for some extra texture – and think it could taste even better with maybe some bacon pieces or chorizo. I will definitely be making more of this soup; it’s so hearty and flavorful.

Ilana: To relax and stay in shape, I do yoga regularly. Even though I don’t really enjoy most exercise, yoga gives me an immediate feeling of relaxation by the end of the class. I started practicing about six years ago because I felt stiff when I woke up in the morning. Doing yoga regularly solved that problem and makes me more mindful of my physical health so I’m not as likely to fall into bad habits.

Danielle: Sad that the new Modest Mouse will be released later than expected, I at least found comfort in an engrossing little ebook called, “Crocheting with Kurt Cobain“. Kind of, sort of, not really about Kurt Cobain or crocheting, it’s about a deceased law student who’s stuck between heaven and earth and must somehow atone for her wrong-doings before she can get entrance to heaven. I couldn’t put it down … I’m also excited about all the amazing shows coming to New York City this year – Björk, Yoko Ono, Basquiat, Frida Kahlo, to name a small few! It’s a good time to visit if you can work it into your travel plans.


Our secret is out! These 70 new patterns are based on simple rectangles!

February 26th, 2015

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Lion Brand® attends The Craft & Hobby Association Conference and Tradeshow every year and a highlight of the event is our fashion show, hosted by Lion Brand spokesperson Vanna White and Lion Brand Creative Director Adina Klein. Based on five simple categories, we’re excited to present our latest collection of over 70 new patterns in the yarns you love – Modern Baby®, Unique, Homespun®, Heartland®, Amazing®, Landscapes®, Heartland Thick & Quick®, Hometown USA®, Homespun® Thick & Quick®, Wool-Ease®, Wool-Ease® Thick & Quick®, Vanna’s Choice®, and Vanna’s Glamour®.

Watch the fashion now:

Below is a look book of garments presented at the show – click the image to link to the free pattern. The majority of the patterns and yarns featured in the collection are available at lionbrand.com right now. Can’t find a garment you like in the look book? Check back by mid-March!


10 Truths: Knitting and Crocheting Prayer Shawls

February 12th, 2015

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“A shawl is like a warm hug.”

Giving a prayer shawl to a friend or family member going through a difficult time is an appropriate gesture when there isn’t anything you can do to make their situation better. A handmade knit or crochet gift can offer comfort beyond words and the process can often have the power to heal one’s self too.

Over the years we’ve collected wisdom and insights from our favorite writers on making and giving prayer shawls (sometimes also known as comfort or healing shawls). These four articles below capture the essence of the prayer shawl and offer ten great tips – from patterns to process to the philosophy behind them – this collection is a great starting point for anyone who’d like to learn more about making prayer shawls:

Also see

Homespun® is on sale now – save 20% at lionbrand.com and Lion Brand retail locations in February.

How have prayer shawls helped you? Share in the comments below!



Lola’s Been Making Blankets Since Before You Were Born!

February 6th, 2015

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Here is the latest installment of Lola, from its creator Todd Clark.

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Crochet Tied Tunic Knit Kyoki’s Kimono Crochet I’ve Been Making Blankets Since Before You Were Born

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Lion Brand’s 10 Most Popular Patterns from January!

February 5th, 2015

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January was all about gorgeous garments and beautiful blankets!

Valentine’s Day projects are in full-swing with the Cabled Heart Boot Cuff coming in number one for the month – are you living the dream and getting ahead of your holiday knitting and crocheting? Tell us your secret!

Many of the patterns that were popular in December are still holding court. You’re still loving the Fresh Bloom Circle #Scarfie and the stunning Open Knit Cardigan made in Gold Leaf®. With the Chelsea Morning Cowl and the Popover Top also not too far behind in popularity, 2015 continues to be be about big, bold knit and crochet!

Your favortie yarns in January included Vanna’s Choice®, Vanna’s Glamour®, Wool-Ease® Thick & Quick®, Country®, Homespun® and Fishermen’s Wool®.

Below is a collection of the most popular patterns from January:

Knit Traffic Throw Simple Crochet Shrug Knit Cromwell Court Afghan
Knit Traffic Throw Simple Crochet Shrug Knit Cromwell Court Afghan
Crochet Valentine Scarf Crochet Baby Love Booties Crochet Celtic Afghan
Crochet Valentine Scarf Crochet Baby Love Booties Crochet Celtic Afghan
Knit Margate Hood Kaleidoscope Afghan Knit Hudson Seed Stitch Scarf
Knit Margate Hood Crochet Kaleidoscope Afghan Knit Hudson Seed Stitch Scarf

6 Good Luck Knit & Crochet Patterns for St. Patrick’s Day

February 3rd, 2015

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14051-illustration-of-a-four-leaf-clover-pvMay your blessings outnumber
The shamrocks that grow,
And may trouble avoid you
Wherever you go.
– Irish Blessing

March is only a few weeks away, which means St. Patrick’s Day is upon us! You’re still in luck, there’s plenty o’ time to get a couple of these brand new knit and crochet projects on the hooks and needles.

 Knit Pot O’ Gold Afghan  Knit Shamrock Rainbow Scarf  Knit Shamrock Hat
 
 Crochet Shamrock Booties  Crochet Top of the Morning Hat  Crochet Shamrock Cup Cozy

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For more St. Paddy’s Day patterns, visit lionbrand.com!


Happy New Year from Lion Brand!

January 1st, 2015

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From all of us at Lion Brand, Happy New Year!

2015

Tell us about your knitting and crochet resolutions for 2015 in the comments below.


Happening Now: The World Amigurumi Exhibition at RESOBOX in New York

December 26th, 2014

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The World Amigurumi Exhibition is happening at Resobox, now through to February 28th, and I had the chance to stop by this past weekend.

Resobox is a Japanese cultural center in Long Island City and their mission is to share and celebrate Japanese influence in the arts. The World Amigurumi Exhibition features over 4,000 amigurumi contributed by over 140 artists from 32 different countries — and it’s something else.

Among my favorite finds – Star Wars Kewpie dolls, Frida Kahlo dolls and colorful ninjas!

I took my six year son and my husband and they both loved the show – there really is something for everyone – and because it’s all for sale, make plans to visit sooner rather than later!

p.s. If you’re going to be at Vogue Knitting Live in NYC this January, Resobox curators Takashi Ikezawa and Helen Moss are giving a FREE lecture on Sunday, January 18th at 11:15am–12:00 noon. I’m planning to be there – hope to see you too! I also understand that VKLive is hosting a pop-up shop – great news for those of you who can’t make it out to Queens.

Below is a selection of photos I took at the show – photography is encouraged at Resobox!

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VK Live 2015 banner image


Merry Christmas from Lion Brand

December 25th, 2014

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From our family to yours, have a safe and happy Christmas!

xmas2014


FLASH SALE: Save 15% on select Bags, Books, Hooks, Needles, Kits and more! We’ll throw in FREE SHIPPING too!*

December 13th, 2014

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No time to make a gift? We’ve got you covered! For a limited time, save 15% on select Bags, Books, Hooks, Needles, Kits and more! We’ll throw in FREE SHIPPING too!* Order by December 15th, 1pm EST for Christmas delivery.


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* Domestic orders only (Mainland US), $35 minimum order. Discount and free shipping applied on qualified orders at checkout. Promotion exclusive to lionbrand.com. Offers not available at retail locations.

For the full selection, visit lionbrand.com!

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