Lion Brand Notebook

News, Ideas and Information for Crafting with Yarn

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Archive for the 'Community' Category


Lion Brand Sponsors the Knitting Runner’s Participation in the New York City Marathon

July 3rd, 2014

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Featured in the New York Times and around the world, David Babcock is the Guinness World Record holder for knitting the longest scarf (12 feet!) while running a marathon, which he did in Kansas City last October. Coupled with a great deal of skill and endurance, David credits his choice in using Lion Brand’s Hometown USA as a factor in his amazing accomplishment!

David on the day he broke the Guinness World Record in Kansas City.

David on the day he broke the Guinness World Record in Kansas City – October 19th, 2013.

:: Support Alzheimer’s research — make a donation today! ::

This November, David will run the NYC Marathon with over 125 “Athletes to End Alzheimer’s” to support the NYC Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association’s programs and services for care and a cure. He’ll be knitting for the duration of the marathon run and Lion Brand is proud to announce its support! David will use his fingers like knitting needles to work with anywhere from 10 to 16 stitches (see below for his finger knitting tutorials), using Lion Brand yarn, of course!

Since its creation in 2009, the Alzheimer’s Association’s NYC Marathon teams have raised well over $2 million. The Chapter offers free support and education to the more than half a million New York City residents who either have Alzheimer’s or a related dementia or are caring for someone who does. For more information about Alzheimer’s or dementia, the Alzheimer’s Associations’ programs and services, how to get involved in events, or how to donate or volunteer, call the Chapter’s 24-Hour Helpline at 800-272-3900.  Trained professional staff is always on hand to offer support and information.

We’re proud to support David in his mission for many reasons. Any time we can bring knitting (or the art of crochet) to the public, we’re so pleased to do so because crafting with yarn promotes health and wellness, something that Lion Brand deeply supports. We’re also happy to lend a hand for a good cause. More than 5 million Americans have Alzheimer’s and that number is expected to grow to as many as 16 million by 2050.

So let’s help David do his part – please make a donation.

:: Support Alzheimer’s research — make a donation today! ::


Learn to Finger Knit with David Babcock


Check back often for updates about the Knitting Runner and the NYC Marathon! We’ll be announcing opportunities for YOU to meet David this November and to learn finger knitting too.


A 5-Step Guide to Creating Your Own Yarncrafting Wellness Plan

June 20th, 2014

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Blogger and author Kathryn Vercillo is an expert in the area of using crafting to heal, having researched the topic extensively for her book Crochet Saved My Life. This is part 2 in her 6-part series for us on the topic of yarncraft health. Read her previous blog posts on the Lion Brand Notebook here.

Last month we explored the top ten health benefits of yarncrafting. Many of you chimed in with great comments about how crochet and knitting have helped you to heal from a variety of different ailments. Want to get more intentional about that? This five-step guide will help you create your own yarncrafting wellness plan.

1. List The Symptoms You Want to Cure

What are the specific symptoms that you want to reduce in your life? Some of the most common health symptoms that people seek to resolve through crafting are:

  • Depression
  • Irritability
  • Anxiety
  • Restlessness
  • Insomnia
  • Physical pain including headaches, muscle aches, and chronic pain
  • Memory loss
  • Mood swings
  • Feelings of uselessness
  • Grief
  • Addiction including food cravings

Knitting and crochet can help with each of these things. For example, it can be a distraction that reduces physical pain and helps control diet cravings and it can provide relaxation to reduce stress-related headaches and irritability. However, not every symptom will apply to you so think about what you really want to solve. It’s a lot easier to get healthy when you know what specific ailments you’re trying to reduce.

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Why It’s Important To Celebrate World Wide Knit In Public Day

June 13th, 2014

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wwkpWorld Wide Knit In Public Day takes place June 14-June 22 this year. Now, you might think, “Why do I need a holiday to knit (or crochet) in public?” The reason is that in many peoples’ brains, knitting  and crocheting still reside in a section labeled “old fashioned.” Believe it or not, 10-15 years ago, people were actually ridiculed for pulling out their yarn, needles and hooks in public and they hesitated to do it.

We’ve come a long way. But we’re not there yet.  I was knitting at an airport a couple of weeks ago and a man watching intently spoke up after a while and said, “I haven’t seen anyone do that since my grandmother.”  The man was in his 60s! I wanted to ask him where he’s been but obviously, he hasn’t been anywhere where he has seen people who don’t look old fashioned knitting or crocheting in public.

That’s where you come in.  Make your presence known. Promote your hobby on the train, the subway, the airport, the doctor’s office, the beach, the park,  the hockey game, the local coffee shop or bar. You know how great it is that you have this craft.  It helps you relax. It offers you the opportunity to give meaningful gifts. It allows you to be creative and productive in a tangible way.  Go out. Knit in public.  People will talk to you and you’ll have an opportunity to tell them what they’re missing.

Visit World Wide Knit (&Crochet) In Public Day’s Facebook page to find or lead a group and use the hashtag #wwkipday to find information and share images and info about knitting in public.

Then, let us know how it goes.  We’d love to hear your stories!

 


The Future of Fashion: Knitwear Designs from Students at the Fashion Institute of Technology

June 3rd, 2014

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Every year, senior students from New York’s Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) design knitwear pieces for their thesis project. As a proud sponsor of the knitwear class, Lion Brand is thrilled to be associated with this iconic school; a school that’s respected and well-loved within the fashion industry.

Each Spring semester, students work with Lion Brand yarns to create beautiful, high-fashion inspired garments, with many of the final works being featured in the school’s annual Future of Fashion fashion show in May. This past fashion show featured a stunning array of pieces, and I’m happy to share with you some of the most amazing designs that graced the runway, along with some “process” shots of their creation. I’ll be highlighting several other amazing pieces in upcoming blog posts, so be sure to keep an eye out!

Hand dye oneDesigner and student Ou Ma hand-dyed skeins of LB Collection Silk Mohair Hand Dye twoOu Ma was inspired by the Cobweb Lace course she took at the Lion Brand Yarn Studio and used some of the technique she learned for the dress.
cobweb lace close upOu Ma’s Handpainted Dress on the runway

 

coin tying pt 2Sakshi Awal places pennies in the LB Collection Angora Merino knit material and ties them tightly with thread. Embossed CoinsA larger cluster of the tied coins in the knit fabric, which will be washed to create an embossed fabric.
Fashion Show Spring 2014Sakshi’s final dress without the coins on the runway.

And here are some other beautiful, creative designs:

Fashion Show Spring 2014Student and designer Jeong Ah (Jay) Woo’s dress knit with Romance and LB Collection Silk Mohair Fashion Show Spring 2014Student and designer Jeanette Yu’s LB Collection Silk Mohair dress featured on the runway.
Fashion Show Spring 2014Student and designer Dongeun Kwon’s dress on the runway with LB Collection Silk Mohair (Midnight) and Superwash Merino Cashmere (Ebony)

Please also check out the knitGrandeur blog for more photos of designs that were featured on the runway! (photo credits: Matthew Septimus, 2014)


8 Beautiful Patterns from Ravelry, Perfect for Weddings!

May 24th, 2014

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Wedding season is here and I know there are many brides-to-be, mothers, and friends searching for the perfect handmade pattern for the joyous occasion. How lovely it would be to have a handmade shawl or gift on that special wedding day; sure to become an heirloom piece, passed down from mother to daughter, and cherished for a lifetime.

I spent some time browsing wedding-related patterns on Ravelry and found these gorgeous patterns, all perfect for the big day. Couple them with Lion Brand’s “wedding appropriate” yarns, and just maybe you’ll have the perfect handmade wedding gift you’ve been looking for!

 Flying Home by Kat Coyle
Project by Ravelry User Lorix5
Knit Pattern: Flying Home by Kat Coyle
LB Collection Silk Mohair in Wisp
Morpho Shawlette by Cheri McEwen
Project by Ravelry User Paeonia
Crochet pattern: Morpho Shawlette by Cheri McEwan
LB Collection Silk Mohair in Wisp

 


Project by Ravelry User AngelSong76
Knit Pattern: Celtic Knot Stole by Sarah Kendrick Hughes
Vanna’s Glamour in Topaz
Siren Shrug
Project by Ravelry user BrotherLadies
Knit Pattern: Cashmere Bolero by Sharon Sorken
LB Collection Baby Alpaca in Fawn Heather
Vanna’s Glamour in Moonstone

 

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10 Most Important Health Benefits of Yarncrafting

May 20th, 2014

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Blogger and author Kathryn Vercillo is an expert in the area of using crafting to heal, having researched the topic extensively for her book Crochet Saved My Life. This is part one in her 6-part series for us on the topic of yarncraft health. Read her previous blog posts on the Lion Brand Notebook here

Yarn heals. Whether you prefer needles or hooks or a combination of both, crafting can soothe your body and mend your mind. Anecdotal evidence has shown this for decades and new research confirms it with science. The benefits people report are seemingly endless. Here are the top 10 yarncrafting health benefits.

1. Knitting and Crochet Relieve Depression

Depression relief is by far the most reported and studied benefit of crochet and knitting. The repetition of the crafts has been shown to release serotonin, a natural anti-depressant. CNN recently reported that “in one study of more than 3,500 knitters, published in The British Journal of Occupational Therapy, 81% of respondents with depression reported feeling happy after knitting. More than half reported feeling “very happy.”

Knit Aromatherapy Eye Pillow
Knit & Crochet Aromatherapy Eye Pillow

2. Crafting Reduces Anxiety

Yarncrafts helps with various forms of anxiety. It keeps your hands busy and mind focused so that you can attend classes or events even when you have social anxiety. It brings the internal mind to a calmer space for when you’re coping with the anxiety of repetitious thoughts. The counting has even been shown to serve as a productive outlet for people with anxiety associated with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder as well as eating disorders. The Craft Yarn Council reports on one study that showed nearly ¾ of women with anorexia found knitting to be calming and anxiety-reducing.

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Can You Run and Crochet Simultaneously? Susie Hewer Can!

April 26th, 2014

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Susie Hewer Deramore Crochet
(image courtesy of Deramores)

We want to congratulate Susie Hewer “The Extreme Knitting Redhead”, who ran the Virgin Money London Marathon on Sunday, April 13th and won the Guinness World Record for creating the longest crochet chain while running a marathon!  Sponsored by our friends over at Deramores in the UK, Susie used the bright, cheery Hometown USA while she crocheted.

Susie began running to help support Alzheimer’s Research UK after losing her mother to vascular dementia in 2005.  Every race that Susie runs is in dedication to her mother, and she has raised thousands of dollars for dementia research over the years.

Crocheting is an art form that Susie embraces as a method of educating others on dementia. She uses crochet to teach how dementia breaks the links between cells until the brain can no longer function properly.  Additionally, her mother taught her to crochet when she was young, which makes this even more meaningful to her.

We wish Susie well on her future endeavors and hope that she continues to inspire more people along her journey! You can read more on her blog here.


Enter the Lion Brand Essay Contest and Tell Us Who Empowers You!

April 8th, 2014

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more-capable-krochet-kids-poster

What we love about Krochet Kids International is that they help women live better lives by giving them the opportunity to earn money through hand crafting. They don’t believe in handouts, they believe in empowerment. Thanks to Krochet Kids, hundreds of women and many more hundreds of children have become educated and have learned they have the power to create a better life for themselves.

Krochet Kids sells more than hats and other clothing. They also offer inspirational posters. We selected our favorite to give away to one person at random who enters our contest, called “Who Empowers You?”

poster#

Simply answer the question, enter your name and email address so we can contact the winner and you’ll have a chance to win this poster. It’s a limited edition poster, signed and numbered by the maker. Lion Brand purchased it here so if you want to purchase one yourself, you can do so. There were only 100 posters made so order quickly if you want one! We also framed it for the winning entry.

The poster is a great reminder to all of us. You are more capable than you think.

 

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Visit us at Vogue Knitting Live in Seattle!

March 7th, 2014

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Vk-live-header
(image via vogueknittinglive.com)

We’re excited to be on the marketplace floor as a vendor for our first ever Vogue Knitting Live showcase in Seattle, so be sure to see us at booth 224!

We look forward to greeting our friends in the Pacific Northwest, checking out the amazing fiber art displays that will be around the marketplace, and seeing some of the hottest trends in knitwear fashion.

As usual, we’ll be selling yarn at a 20% off discount, so those who haven’t gotten to experience the LB Collection® in person will be able to pet and fawn over our super-soft Baby Alpaca, luxurious Cashmere, hand dyed 100% Silk and more.  In addition to selling great yarns, we’ll have catalogs and some free patterns available to take home with you.

Plus, you get a free anniversary tote with your yarn purchase!

anniversary-tote-3

Do you plan on going to Vogue Knitting Live, Seattle? Let us know in the comments.


Celebrating Craft Month with 9 Inspirational Projects from the Lion Brand Customer Gallery!

March 2nd, 2014

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In honor of National Craft Month, we’re sharing several truly awe-inspiring projects from our Customer Gallery–perhaps one was even made by you! The following customer creations will have your imagination running wild about your next project (after you’ve finished your current one of course).

Panda Sweater- (VC) Tea in the Parlor Shawl (HS) district 12 - crochet (WETQ)
Panda Sweater
Made by – Shireen Mills
Yarn – Vanna’s Choice®
Pattern – Original
Tea in the Parlor Shawl
Made by – Veronica Barrera
Yarn – Homespun®
Thick & Quick®

Pattern – Tea in the Parlor
District 12 Inspired Cowl Made by – Christina Self
Yarn – Wool-Ease® Thick & Quick®
Pattern – District 12 Cowl Wrap (crochet)
embellished beanie (HS) Edward Gorey gloves (WETQ) entrelac baby blanket
Embellished Beanie
Made by – Alexandra Richards
Yarn – Homespun®
Pattern – Embellished Beanie
Edward Gorey Gloves
Made by – Carrie Martin
Yarn – Wool-Ease®
Pattern – Original
Entrelac Baby Blanket
Made by – Cynthia Deermount
Yarn – Vanna’s Choice®
Pattern – Tumbling Blocks Blanket
crochet ripple afghan - VC Covetable Cable -(VC) baby blanket-BF
Crochet Ripple Afghan
Made by – R.R. Morin
Yarn – Vanna’s Choice®
Pattern – Updated Ripple Afghan
Covetable Cable Scarf
Made by – Gina Baronian-Moore
Yarn – Vanna’s Choice®
Pattern – Covetable Cable Scarf
Lovey
Made by – L Linda
Yarn – Baby’s First®
Pattern – Bunny Blanket Buddy

Have you recently made a project using Lion Brand yarns? Please share with us in the Customer Gallery!

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