Lion Brand Notebook

News, Ideas and Information for Crafting with Yarn

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Archive for the 'Knitting' Category


Make a Zodiac Scarf for Gemini

May 2nd, 2014

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Gemini scarf
Gemini is the sign of the Twins and it’s the sign for birthdays from May 21 to June 21. Geminis are witty and inquisitive and, like other air signs, they value intelligence. The dual aspect of this sign means that those born under it are able to see things from multiple perspectives, making them excellent communicators. It’s no surprise that they are also great multi-taskers! People born under this sign are cheerful and personable, so chances are good you’ve got at least one friend who is a Gemini!

gemini-signThe colors in this scarf match the qualities of Gemini: yellow for curiosity, navy for intelligence, sapphire for eloquence, and aqua for optimism.

If you’ve got a friend with a birthday coming up, a handmade gift is always the way to go. Your Gemini friend will probably want to know all about how you made it, so it might be fun to set aside some time to teach him or her your craft. If you are a Gemini yourself, you’ll probably want to make two of these scarves – one for you and one for your bestie!

The Gemini zodiac scarf is available for both Knit and Crochet (pictured). Not your sign? Check out our other zodiac scarves here.


Spring Lace Shawl Knit-Along — Gauge Swatching

April 10th, 2014

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Hi, I’m Grace and I’m so excited to be leading the knit along for the Spring Lace Shawl.

This is a great project for both experienced knitters and beginners who are ready to advance beyond simple stitch patterns. With an elegant lace pattern and a chunky, multi-stranded construction, this quick knit will be the perfect addition to your wardrobe to curl up with on those cooler spring evenings.

I’ll be posting every week giving you tips for getting through the project successfully.

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Craft Through the 7 Wonders of the Yarn World – Next Stop: Cables!

April 9th, 2014

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Nathan Vincent’s sculpture of Easter Island Statues; model wearing knit Oversized Fishermen’s Sweater

Last year, we asked Nathan Vincent to design several larger-than-life sculptures that could be associated with seven yarn techniques or, as we like to call them, “yarn wonders.” Revealed at the Craft and Hobby Association show earlier this year, these sculptures were presented as Lion Brand’s 7 Wonders of the Yarn World. Each yarn wonder was represented in our fashion show, displaying the variety of ways you can use and wear each one. We started with textures (Stonehenge) and stripes and chevrons (Mayan Ruins). Our third Wonder of the Yarn World, the Moai statues of Easter Island, represents timeless and awe-inspiring cables.

According to Creative Director Adina Klein, cabling may look complicated and mysterious but it’s actually a very easy stitch to pick up. This collection of cabled-designs features classic and timeless pieces that you can coordinate with any wardrobe.

We presented several designs that range from classic cabled afghans, to more modern takes on the Fishermen’s sweater. The garments featured were made in a variety of yarns like Heartland, Heartland Thick & Quick®Hometown USA®, Homespun®, Homespun® Thick & Quick®, Wool-Ease®, Wool-Ease® Thick & Quick®, Vanna’s Choice®, and Vanna’s Glamour®.

Below you can see a selection of some of the designs featured. Find your own cable inspiration and use this classic technique to make something new and modern.

Knit Neutral Cabled Afghan Knit Cabled Hat CHA-cables Knit Lush Ribbed Pullover
Knit Cabled Hat
with
Knit Fitted Cable Pullover
with
Knit Neutral Cabled Afghan
Knit Striped Cable Hat
with
Knit Oversized Fisherman Sweater*
Knit Weekend Ribbed Hat
with
Knit Cozy Textured Pullover
with
Knit Studio Afghan
Knit Lush Ribbed Poncho

*Pattern(s) coming soon


Join Our Spring Knit-Along Featuring the… Spring Lace Shawl!

March 28th, 2014

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Each season we host a crochet- or knit-along, a virtual event in which yarncrafters come together here online to work on one pattern together, share their experiences, and to learn together. There’s no need to sign up! Simply follow along with the blog posts at your own pace as you knit your project, and feel free to share your comments and/or photos as you progress. KAL_BADGE_2014
81058adaWe asked you to vote on what knit project you’d like to make, and you picked our Spring Lace Shawl! Almost 6,000 of you voted, and we’re so excited to knit-along with you.Click here to download the pattern for the Spring Lace Shawl and click here to get the kit in Kelly Green or in Silver Blue (free shipping for a limited time).

To get this knit-along going, this week is about gathering your materials so that we can jump right in the week of April 7th. This lovely shawl is made in our Vanna’s Choice yarn, a versatile, easy-care, acrylic worsted-weight yarn that comes in a huge assortment of stunning colors. If you’re more in the mood for a cotton blend, Cotton-Ease is a great substitute, and will be light and lovely as the temperatures get warmer.

As with any yarn substitution, you’ll also need to figure out how many skeins of the yarn of your choice the pattern will require. Here are the number of balls for our other recommended yarns:

Yarn OS
Vanna’s Choice 12 skeins
Cotton-Ease 12 skeins

Click here for our FAQ on substituting yarns.

Starting the week of April 7th, our KAL host Grace DiLorenzo will be posting her progress through the lace shawl project, with updates coming every Thursday. You’ll know it’s a dedicated KAL blog post when you see our special badge in the upper right-hand corner of the post. Don’t forget to join our Ravelry group for this KAL as well!

In the meantime, please introduce yourself below–let us know who you are, where you’re from, and who you’re making this top for!

About Grace: Grace DiLorenzo has been knitting for the last 10 years. What started as a hobby quickly grew into a passion. Her favorite things to make are garments and lace. As a teacher at the Lion Brand Yarn Studio in New York City she has been able to share her love of yarn crafting teaching beginning through advanced knitting and yarn dyeing classes. She has lead the first four in studio knit alongs and is excited to do it again! grace_200px

Help Pick our NEXT Knit-Along Project!

March 20th, 2014

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Voting ended on Thursday, March 27th, 2014. Thanks to all who voted!

And the winner is … The Spring Lace Shawl!

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It’s that time of year again! Come knit-along with us as we make one of the garments below.

But FIRST you have to help us pick the pattern! Learn more about the patterns by clicking on their photos/names or by visiting LionBrand.com.

Eloise Eyelet Cardi Spring Lace Shawl Seven Wonders Wrap Mitered Ridges Top

 

Ready? Cast your vote!

(Can’t see the voting tool above? Click here to vote.)

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A knit-along is a virtual event, where all the participants make the same project together. Follow along with knit-along host Grace here on the blog and share your comments and photos. There’s no need to sign up, and it’s free to join! (New to knit-alongs? Check out our guide here.)

The winning pattern will be announced Friday, March 28th, 2014 here on the blog and at that time we’ll also give you details on picking up your supplies and getting started on the project!

Votes must be cast by 11:59pm Eastern Standard Time, March 27th, 2014. You must use the voting tool above to vote; comments here on the blog do NOT count as votes.

Crocheters, look out for a crochet-along later this year, here on the Lion Brand Notebook.


How to Make the “3 Strand Arm Knit Cowl”

March 18th, 2014

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Ekat shows you how to get the look of this 3 Strand Arm Knit Cowl without using needles! Using the simple technique of arm knitting, you can make this scarf in just half an hour!

Shop for Unique here: http://lby.co/1i2sGRN


Knitted Toys: A Caterpillar Emerges

March 16th, 2014

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Writer and avid knitter Selma Moss-Ward joins us for a series of blog posts about becoming a first-time grandmother and knitting toys. Click here to read her previous blog posts.

I enjoy knitting toys more than most other projects I undertake, because they’re easy and fun to make. There aren’t concerns with gauge or fit, as with a garment, and if a toy doesn’t turn out looking exactly like the photo on the instructions, it seems individualized and special, rather than flawed.

This is to say I loved making the “Cuddly Caterpillar” from Lion Brand’s vast pattern database.  It’s great for any beginner just starting out or an experienced knitter like myself.

Vanna’s Choice,” the  specified yarn, knits into a smooth, slightly glossy fabric, and, being washable and firm, withstands the rigors of playtime.  It’s also non-allergenic and moth-proof .  As with the other Lion Brand toys I’ve blogged about—William the Hedgehog and Leo the Lion—there’s plenty of yarn left over for another caterpillar…or two!

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How to Make the “Lush Plush Arm Knit Cowl”

March 11th, 2014

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Shira shows you how to get the look of this Lush Plush Arm Knit Cowl without using needles! Using the simple technique of arm knitting, you can make this scarf in just half an hour!

Shop for Homespun® Thick & Quick® here: http://lby.co/1i1ccck

Update: if you’re unsure of how to seam the piece, we have a pictorial walkthrough for you.


7 Ways Knitting Keeps You Healthy and Well

February 28th, 2014

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This article originally appeared in TreeHugger and is reprinted with permission from Katherine Martinko.

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Last month I wrote an article called “Why bother knitting a scarf?” Much to my surprise, I received thousands of positive reactions from readers who share my love of homemade, local, and beautiful “slow fashion” items. Clearly, knitting is being embraced by people from all walks of life who benefit from its peaceful, relaxing repetition. It got me wondering – what’s really going on when people knit? Why is it so tremendously popular?

It turns out that knitting has incredible health benefits. It makes people feel good in just about every way. A bit of research has revealed a wide range of ways in which knitting helps humans cope, physically and mentally.

1. Knitting is used for therapy. It’s a powerful distractant, helping people manage long-term physical pain. For those who are depressed, knitting can motivate them to connect with the world. It is a conversation starter, allowing people to interact politely without making eye contact. It builds confidence and self-esteem.

2. Knitting is supremely relaxing, which is extremely important for reducing stress and anxiety. Dr. Herbert Benson, founder of Harvard’s Mind/Body Medical Institute, wrote The Relaxation Response, in which he recommends the repetition of a word, sound, phrase, prayer, or muscular activity to elicit “the relaxation response” – decreased heart rate, muscle tension, and blood pressure. Knitting is likened to meditation, sometimes described by knitters as “spiritual” and “Zen-like.”

3. Knitting connects people. By joining a knitting group, a solitary activity turns into a social one. One study, called “The Benefits of Knitting for Personal and Social Wellbeing in Adulthood” and published in the British Journal of Occupational Therapy, found that “knitting in a group impacted significantly on perceived happiness, improved social contact, and communication with others.”

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Make an Infinity Scarf in 30 Minutes with Audra Kurtz

February 7th, 2014

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Join Audra Kurtz and learn how to create a 30 minute infinity scarf using a very simple arm knitting technique.

So easy, anyone can do it!

Made with Wool-Ease® Thick & Quick®. Brought to you by The Kurtz Corner.

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