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.
Matching sets make wonderful handmade holiday gifts. They are just the thing for when you want to make more than a scarf for someone, but maybe you aren’t sure of their size or you don’t feel ready to take on a more complex garment. All of these projects are rated EASY, which means they feature basic stitch patterns and simple construction – perfect for beginners!
If you’re not sure what to make, a hat & scarf combo is always a great choice. Choose a yarn that the recipient will love for a gift that easily coordinates with their wardrobe. If you’re feeling a little more adventurous, try something like our Rectangle Cardigan & Cowl and use the accent color from one piece to create a matching accessory.
Want something a little more grand? Our Neck’s Best Thing series is made for matching! Each of these projects start with a scarf and finish with an afghan. Make both as a set that will keep your loved ones warm at home and on the go. Try the crochet Color Blocks Afghan & Scarf or the knit Neutral Slip Stitch Afghan & Scarf pictured below, and find even more ideas HERE.
|Knit Sassy Stripes Leg Warmer Trio made with Modern Baby®||Crochet Color Blocks Afghan & Scarf made with Heartland®||Crochet Granny Square Hat & Scarf made with Bonbons|
|Knit Docklands Hat & Scarf made with Heartland®||Knit Neutral Slip Stitch Afghan & Scarf made with Lion’s Pride® Woolspun®||Knit Easy Rectangle Cardigan & Cowl made with Vanna’s Choice® and Vanna’s Tapestry|
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Crafters are often intimidated by straying from pattern instructions, but one of the easiest ways to customize a project is by simply changing the colors! Pattern designers do a great job picking colors for their samples, but sometimes you’ll find that although they look lovely, they aren’t your colors. For patterns that are written for one solid color, it’s an easy swap, but what happens when the pattern includes color work? Choosing a whole new color palette need not be daunting!
Vanna’s Choice® is an excellent yarn to work with if you are looking to create a custom palette. With 66 colors currently in the main line, you’ve got a lot to choose from. Add double-stranding into the mix, and you’ve got a whopping 2,145 color options! Vanna’s Choice® is also expertly designed with color matching in mind, so customize your creation with confidence – Vanna’s Choice® colors work together no matter what your desired palette!
To help get you started, we’ve created four kits based on some of our favorite color combinations:
|Mystic Mermaid||Fetching Fern|
|Dapper Daisy||Happy Harvest|
Each kit contains 6 skeins of yarn, one in each color pictured. Try combining them in one of these 6 ball patterns, or pick a favorite pattern from your own library. You’ll be amazed at how simply changing the colors can give a familiar project a new look! Did you notice that the two ripple afghans below are actually the same pattern?
|Crochet Ripple Afghan||Knit Sampler Afghan||Cozy Ripple Lapghan||Color Blocked Hoodie|
If you’re ready to create your own palettes, there are lots of tools online to help you. Here are just a couple to get you started:
Coolors has an excellent color palette generator (free to use on the web) which allows you to choose a base color and generate matching color schemes with the click of the spacebar. Drag to reorder the swatches, click the lock to keep colors you like, and use the sliders to tweak colors manually.
Photocopa is another nifty color palette helper (also free to use). Upload a photo or choose one from their gallery and Photocopa will generate a palette based on the photo! Choose the ones you like and use the sliders to change the proportions of the swatches.
Whether you call it the Felted Join or the Spit Splice, this way of adding on a new ball of wool is perfect when you want to avoid having to weave in ends.
A few drops of water help wool fibers bind together — the result is seamless! Please note that this method is for wool yarn only! If you are interested in an invisible join for other types of yarn, check out our Russian Join tutorial.
Take a look at how we’ve done it:
There’s something irresistible about baby booties! Their tiny size means they work up fast (and who doesn’t love a fast-finish project?), but I think we love to make them because they are just so cute! Baby Day is May 2nd. Even if you don’t have a baby or grandbaby to celebrate, chances are you know someone who does. Those little feet need booties! Of course, booties make fantastic shower or new mom gifts too, and if you’re feeling extra crafty, why not make a whole baby set? We’ve rounded up some of our favorite free patterns to get you started.
|Crochet Springtime Set. Make this set with
Lion Brand Fun.
|Knit Lullaby Layette.
Make this set with
|Learn to Knit Baby Set. Make this set with
|Crochet Butterfly Barefoot Sandals* by Repeat Crafter Me. Make them with Bonbons!||Crochet Summer Sandals* by AshleeMarie. Make them with Babysoft® & Extra Soft Wool Blend!||Crochet Loopy Love Booties (3 sizes)* by Moogly. Make them with Vanna’s Choice® Baby!|
|Snips & Snails Set.
Make this set with
NEW Ice Cream®!
|Made by Marni Knitted Booties*. Make them with
|Berry Pretty Set.
Make this set with
NEW Ice Cream®!
* not a Lion Brand pattern
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Big personalities have helped some cats like Grumpy Cat, Lil’ Bub and Keyboard Cat to achieve celebrity status on the internet, but we think they’re ALL stars! With that in mind we’ve created a special gallery where you can share your favorite felines with the world. Post your pics of crafting with cats on your favorite social media site (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) and simply include the hashtag #LBcats!
You can also upload your pics directly to our gallery here:
Make your furry friend a special #Caturday treat with these patterns for knit and crochet!
Amigurumi Sardines Cat Toy
Amigurumi Fortune Cookie Cat Toy