Lion Brand Notebook

News, Ideas and Information for Crafting with Yarn

Image frame

Author Archive

Lion Brand and Project Knitwell Ask: Are You A Caregiver? How Knitting Can Help.

October 15th, 2015

Pin It

Are You A Caregiver? How Knitting Can Help.

The Comfort of Knitting is a unique how to knit book with a mission.  It is presented by Project Knitwell, a non-profit organization started by a mother who found knitting helped her relax and provided a distraction from her worries during countless hours spent in the hospital.  That mom, Carol Caparosa, was so moved by her experience, that she has devoted the last 11 years of her life to helping others discover the joy of knitting in times of stress.

Project Knitwell volunteers work in hospitals, in after-school programs for at-risk youth and with cancer support groups.  They supply the The Comfort of Knitting book, offer knitting instruction, and provide yarn, needles and patterns to patients, family members and health care providers.

Lion Brand®, working with Project Knitwell designed and produced The Comfort of Knitting.  It includes

  • How to knit instructions
  • 7 easy patterns
  • A  list of health benefits of knitting based on studies including alleviating eating disorders, delaying memory loss and decreasing stress.
  • A list of books about the therapeutic benefits of knitting
  • First person accounts of the effect of knitting on caregivers and patients

With a focus on caring for the caregiver, the book recognizes the unique stresses and feelings of isolation experienced by the scores of millions of people who take care of family members and patients every day.

Included in the book is the Three Strand Afghan pattern. Made with Hometown USA®, it’s an easy knit blanket that offers warmth and comfort to its receiver.

Knit Three Strand Afghan made with Hometown USA®

Lion Brand® has committed all of its proceeds from the book to Project Knitwell and to the Alzheimer’s Association, since caregivers for Alzheimer’s patients often face long term and unrecognized efforts.

Can you share a story of using knitting to help you deal with the stress of being a caregiver?

Christmas In July Day 4: Prayer Shawls–A Gift Of Comfort

July 18th, 2015

Pin It

Christmas in July: Prayer and Healing Shawls to Start Working on Now!Do you have some free time this summer? In our Christmas in July series, we’ll be rounding-up our favorite gifts to make and give, including ones you can get started on now. Trust us – you’ll be thanking yourself between holiday parties when you’ve got all your gifts blocked and wrapped.

Gift giving time usually evokes a festive occasion. But when the holidays roll around, it’s not always a happy time for everyone.  For those who have experienced loss or health problems during the year, a gift is also an opportunity to tell someone that they are in your thoughts and you support them through all the ups and downs of life.

These six shawls are all beginner or easy.  The best thing about creating simple, repetitive patterns is that they tend to be relaxing to knit or crochet, so not only will the recipient feel good about getting one of these shawls, but you’ll find them soothing to make!

comfort_shawl simply_sublime neutral_slant
Knit Comfort Shawl made with Homespun® Crochet Simply Sublime Shawl made with Homespun® Knit Neutral Slant Shawl made with Scarfie®
heartfelt_shawl tender_shawl serene_comfort
Knit Heartfelt Shawl made with Homespun® Knit Tender Shawl made with Homespun® Crochet Serene Comfort Shawl made with Homespun®
tea_parlor two_color scalloped
Knit and Crochet Tea in the Parlor Shawl made with Homespun® Thick & Quick® Crochet Two Color Shawl made with Homespun® Thick & Quick® Crochet Scalloped Shawl made with Homespun®

6 Crochet Projects Just For Baby!

June 30th, 2015

Pin It

Some of our favorite summer projects are baby patterns.  The light, bright colors and smaller size make them perfect patterns to work on in the warm weather.  And, one thing for certain is that there will always be new babies to get gifts for, so why not get a jump start and have some finished gifts on hand? Whether it’s a toy, baby booties, or an afghan, you’ll find a gift that’s just right from our selection of the most popular crochet baby projects.

One of our all-time most popular baby projects is the Crochet Bunny Lovie.  It takes just one ball of Vanna’s Choice® in the color of your choice, a little fiberfill, and some scrap yarn for the face.  You can delight a new mom for just a few dollars! Two other popular crochet toys are the Little Lamb and the Bella Blocks.  They’re both easy and small and you can combine several toys for a gift of soft, hand-made toys to welcome a new baby.

The baby afghans we selected take only 3 balls of Babysoft® and can be completed in a weekend.  The Sweetest Baby Afghan is a Beginner skill level pattern, so it’s the perfect first project for those of you looking to go beyond just making simple scarves.  The Bunratty Baby Blanket is made in squares, so you can travel easily with it while you’re in the car this summer or on the go.

Finally, rounding out our selection are the baby booties.  Add an embellishment, like a flower or heart to make customize them.


bunny lovie sweetest baby afghan baby love booties
Crochet Bunny Lovie
Made with Vanna’s Choice®.
Crochet Sweetest Baby Afghan
Made with Babysoft®.
Crochet Baby Love Booties
Made with Vanna’s Choice®.
bella blocks bunratty blanket little lamb
Crochet Bella Blocks
Made with Baby’s First®
Crochet Bunratty Baby Blanket
Made with Babysoft®.
Crochet Little Lamb
Made with Homespun® and Wool-Ease®


9 Fun Tote Bag Patterns To Knit And Crochet For Summer

May 22nd, 2015

Pin It

If you knit and crochet, you are likely to want to do it all year.  That sense of satisfaction that comes from accomplishing something with your hands would be missed if you give it up when the warm weather comes.  And, what would you do if you didn’t have knitting or crocheting to de-stress for months at a time?

I’ve searched through our selection of patterns to find a variety of summer totes that will keep your hands busy and your nerves calm while you travel or just relax on the porch or the beach this summer.  They are all made with lighter weight yarns and can be finished quickly and given as gifts (or to yourself!)

These market bags and totes can be stuffed in a suitcase and used as a bag to carry your souvenirs and gifts after a trip,  or you can take these sturdy bags to the grocery store and use them instead of disposable bags.  They are lightweight and casual, so they’ll work with the relaxed style we all enjoy in the summer. Whether you take them to the beach, the store, or on a trip, you’ll find the perfect tote for every occasion.


Crochet 4 Ball Market Bag Knit Sitara designed by Uma Padu Crochet Hexagon Market Bag
Crochet 4 Ball Market Bag made with Kitchen Cotton Knit Sitara designed by Uma Padu made with Cotton-Ease® * Crochet Hexagon Market Bag made with Kitchen Cotton
Knit Slip Stitch Mosaic Tote Crochet Woodland Owl Bag designed by Laura Bozeman Knit Blended Tote
Knit Slip Stitch Mosaic Tote made with Kitchen Cotton Crochet Woodland Owl Bag designed by Laura Bozeman made with Vanna’s Choice® * Knit Blended Tote made with Vanna’s Choice®
Crochet Rainbow Burst Tote
Knit Mini Market Tote
Simple Crochet Tote
Crochet Rainbow Burst Tote made with Vanna’s Choice® Knit Mini Market Tote made with Martha Stewart CraftsTM/MC Cotton Hemp Simple Crochet Tote made with Vanna’s Glamour®

* Please note, this is not a Lion Brand pattern and the author is charging a small fee to download it.

Start Dreaming About Yarns and Projects With New Color Cards

April 22nd, 2015

Pin It

There is no better way to shop at home for yarn than using color cards.  If you’re one of those people who wants to plan your purchase before you actually start shopping, you’ll get the feel of the yarn, and the color with these handy mini-samples.  Some people take one thread off the card from each of the yarns they want to use in a project and hold them together.  Some people look at a color card and get inspired to make a gift for someone special.

We just updated the color cards for six of our most popular yarns (priced from about $1.00 to $3.00) so you can start dreaming about your next project.  Why not have your own collection on hand so you’ll be ready when inspiration strikes!

Vanna Yarns: Sample Card
Vanna Yarns: Sample Card
 Heartland Yarn: Color Card
Heartland®: Color Card
Heartland Thick & Quick Yarn®: Sample CardHeartland® Thick & Quick®: Sample Card
 Wool-Ease® Thick & Quick® Yarn: Sample Card
 Wool-Ease® Thick & Quick®: Sample Card
 Landscapes Yarn: Sample Card
Landscapes: Sample Card
Country Yarn: Sample Card
Country: Sample Card

:: Review Lion Brand’s color card collection today! ::