My daughter loves octopuses (or is it octopi?) and is almost never caught without holding one of her 7 stuffed octopuses or wearing one of her growing closet of socks and tees. When I saw this pattern for an octopus costume there was no contest as to what she wanted to be. She got so excited and immediately asked that it be made in her favorite colors: purple and “lellow” (yellow) with pink spots.
Crocheting the entire thing would be a feat that would’ve taken more than a month’s planning. And while I could quilt, the pattern was beyond my skill level. Thankfully Jackie, our Technical Editor, was an expert seamstress and offered to help out. Since I love creating new things using yarn, I wanted to add some personal handmade touches.
But I also didn’t want it to be just handmade – I wanted it to sparkle and glitter.
When I first saw the pattern I immediately wanted crocheted medallions for the suckers and the spots.
Vanna’s Glamour fit perfectly with what I wanted, and her mustard gold yarn went well with the deep purple velvet fabric. Soon I was swept up in a creative moment and started picking out more colors like light gold and pink, which would give the costume a cool, colorful, and textured look. Even Michala, our Design intern, found it so adorable that she also wanted to assist. Since I knew she was fast crocheter, I asked if she could make some medallions whenever she had free time.
By the time I looked away, I found a pile of medallions of varying sizes already on the table. She even had extra time to crochet the eyes and a pink bow too!
Then I saw Martha Stewarts CraftsTM/MC Glitter Eyelash yarn and it all came together. The sparkly polka dots, the giant eyes with purple eyelashes, even the pink bow on its head. When I showed my daughter the finished product she couldn’t wait to get it on her.
|Michala crocheting away||The growing pile of octopus spots||Sewing it altogether.|
The only bad (or good) part will be trying to take it off her once Halloween’s over.
One of my favorite shows to attend has always been the Knit and Crochet Show. And earlier this month during Crochet Guild of America’s Professional Development Day, I got to hear my fellow colleagues and peers in the yarncraft industry speak about what we’ve all learned this past year. What always excited me about this show was hearing other people, who were just as passionate as I was about yarn, talk about what they love.
It always felt like a family coming home for the holidays, reuniting and catching up what everyone has been doing since the last show. It was this experience I always look forward to the most.
This year was particularly special because I got to see Rita Weiss be inducted into the Crochet Hall of Fame. It reminded me of the reason why I work in this business and at Lion Brand. She has served as my role model, and was the reasons why Lion Brand got involved with the Crochet Guild of America. How she has become a household name and what she has done for the yarncraft industry is what I hope that Lion Brand will one day become.
Not only that but because I travel so much it also gives me a chance to see what Lion Brand has been working on this past year. When videos of my family and I talking about Lion Brand and Vanna White giving Lion Brand’s annual proceeds to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital, it brought a tear to my heart knowing I was seeing on screen what I always want our customers to know about Lion Brand. Just like a family, we are taught to be generous and to care about others, but most of all that family comes first.
This year I also got to see I got to see Lauren and Brandyce model for the Lion Brand segment of the Crochet Fashion show. It always impresses me how much our employees go above and beyond when it comes to showing their love for Lion Brand. Whether it’s working behind a desk or working the runaway to model this year’s designs.
I can hardly wait what the next show will bring but I do hope to see some of you in July…
Want to check out a Lion Brand booth near you? We’ll be in Hartford, Connecticut for Stitches East from November 10-11!
Lion Brand is an 135-year-old American brand that’s still owned and operated by the Blumenthal family! Six generations of the family have been involved in every aspect of the company from the corporate offices, to being the baby models on the yarn labels, to working at the Lion Brand Yarn Studio. Join the Blumenthals as they recount some of their favorite memories of Lion Brand throughout the years.
If you’re reading this blog post in your email or an RSS reader, please click on the title to view the full blog post and video on our website.
What are some of your favorite memories of Lion Brand from your life? We’d love to hear from you in the comments!
I’ve been a knitter, a shop girl at my LYS, the editor in chief of Vogue Knitting and Knit. 1 Magazine, and now, as Creative Director of Lion Brand and my motto has always
I didn’t start out in the hand-knitting industry. I studied writing and film at Oberlin and after college I worked as an assistant editor on feature films. I took time off from the grueling hours of independent film post-production to write my first screenplay,
|Pictured: our new creative director, Adina, and her daughter.|
David Blumenthal (President/CEO) and Dean Blumenthal (EVP/COO) have won the prestigious Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year® 2013 Award in New Jersey in the ‘Family Business’ category. What perfect timing! Just as we celebrate our 135th anniversary. It means a lot to us to be recognized by such an influential global corporation, especially since we’ve come a long way in five generations from a pushcart on the Lower East Side of Manhattan! For a look inside the company today, see this video: About Lion Brand Yarn Company – 135th Anniversary Special.
(Left to right: David Blumenthal & Dean Blumenthal)
“Being recognized by a prestigious organization like Ernst & Young is such an honor for our 5th generation family business. I’m grateful for the leadership of our fathers who mentored us and taught us by example, and for the expertise and devotion of all our associates.”
Congratulations to David and Dean Blumenthal!
As a traveling salesperson for Lion Brand for over 30 years, I’ve crisscrossed the country meeting knitters and crocheters from all corners of the United States and hearing their stories. In addition to yarncrafters, throughout my travels I’ve sometimes been lucky enough to run into some celebrities. Being that I am a huge sports fan, it is always extra exciting when I run into an athlete. During my travels, I have met the likes of Muhammad Ali and Darryl Strawberry.
My father, like me, traveled for the company for over 40 years and he too ran into his share of famous faces. One of my personal favorites that he had the pleasure of meeting was Deacon Jones of the Fearsome Foursome from Los Angeles Rams. Deacon sadly passed away today and it reminded me of my father, how much he loved traveling for Lion Brand, and of his adventures on the road.
May Deacon rest in peace.
[Pictured: my father George Blumenthal and Deacon Jones.]
Can you believe that Lion Brand has been a staple in the yarn industry since 1878? This year, we’re celebrating our 135th anniversary, and we want to invite you, our customers, to a behind-the-scenes look at our operation. Lion Brand yarns have been on the market for 135 years, and today, we’re proud to say that six generations of the Blumenthal family have been involved in the company, from the corporate office to the baby faces on skein labels. Take a look at this short video to get to know the Blumenthals and their passion for yarn as well as education, inspiration and innovation.
If you’re viewing this blog post in your e-mail or an RSS reader, you may need to click on the title of the blog post to view it online and see the videos.
What special memories have you had involving Lion Brand throughout the years?
Since Iron Man 3 is premiering on May 3rd I thought that I would make a project to prepare with our new yarn, Heartland! Heartland officially goes on sale today but we’ve had a few skeins in the office to play with for weeks. One day I walked by them and realized that it came in the perfect Iron Man colors!
This is a guest blog post by Carolyn, our customer support supervisor. Her first blog post about Ramon, the lion statue by our NJ office door, can be read here.
Back at the Carlstadt office, Ramon was thinking that he needed something new for spring…
Something stylish and fresh…and bold like his roar. After all, his current neckwear was getting tired.
So, he tried out our new color of Neon Pink in our Hometown USA line—what do you think?
Looks like he is ready to kick it into spring with his new look!
The pattern I used was Crocheted Rosettes/Flowers (free on LionBrand.com) – I used the largest size and just didn’t close up the Rosette.
P.S. I like to use this pattern for scarves for other things like stuffed animals and dolls—with a little imagination, the possibilities are endless.
A few years ago, I met the super-talented Robyn Chachula, a crochet designer whose background in engineering gives her projects a wonderfully architectural logic. Over the years, I’ve had the opportunity to get to know Robyn better, and she’s always making crochet easy to understand through great charts and schematics.
As an admirer both of architecture and crochet, I couldn’t resist working up one of the fantastic patterns from her book Simply Crochet. Pictured is my version of Robyn’s Linked Jacket, worked in our Martha Stewart Crafts™ Extra Soft Wool Blend with a clasp from Gita Maria.
I love that simply through choosing my yarn and by selecting my own closure, I’ve made this pattern my own–that’s really one of the great joys of crocheting and knitting your own clothes.
If you’re interested in learning more about Robyn’s designs, check out these interviews with her:
Do you have a finished project that you want to show off? Leave a comment and a photo or click here to upload your project to our Customer Gallery.