Lion Brand Notebook

News, Ideas and Information for Crafting with Yarn

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Archive for the 'Pattern Recommendations' Category


Most Popular Patterns from March!

April 13th, 2014

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With spring finally here, we’re ready to start fun and colorful patterns like this Geometric Afghan made with Heartland, which was one of our most popular patterns in March. Today, we’re featuring some of the top patterns from last month, and by the looks of it, it seems that many of you might be working on afghans.

In addition to seeing afghans, it’s nice to see that people are still fond of the District 12 Cowl Wrap, and seeing the popularity of the Emily Bronte Topper inspires me to write the next “Great American Novel” while wrapped in Homespun® (wouldn’t that be a cool story to tell).

Check out the rest below and start adding to your crafting wishlist!

Crochet Ripple Afghan Knit Animal Talk Throw Knit Traffic Throw
Crochet Ripple Afghan Knit Animal Talk Throw Knit Traffic Talk Throw

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Do Your Ears Hang Low?

April 11th, 2014

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It’s really adorable to see your child and their furry best friend get excited over anything and everything. Whether it’s some fun at the park or a drive to Grandma’s house – these two are an inseparable pair!

Celebrate their love and friendship with Lion Brand’s knit Bunny Hoodie and Bunny Dog Costume this Easter!  They’ll be the best-dressed couple at the annual Easter Egg hunt!


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 Cabled Topper with Pockets
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 Ribbed Poncho*

*Pattern(s) coming soon


Make a Simple Shrug with Yolanda Soto-Lopez

April 4th, 2014

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One of our most popular patterns, the Simple Shrug, is an easy project that’s perfect for beginners. The pattern is essentially a long rectangle seamed together at the ends to form a “one size fits all” shrug. Many of you have been excited to start this pattern, but wanted more of a visual explanation about seaming the ends and how the whole thing comes together. Now, we’re happy to share with you this wonderfully detailed video that will help guide you on this pattern journey!

Check out this new video with Yolanda Soto-Lopez of “All Crafts Channel” as she walks you through every step of the way for this pattern.


Arm Knitting with Mary Beth Temple: A New Book on the Shelves!

April 4th, 2014

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Arm Knitting cover

Arm knitting has taken the fiber world by storm. It’s a quick and easy way to produce a chunky knit item, which could be anything from a cowl, to a scarf, or even a blanket. In about 30 minutes or less, you can knit a beautiful cowl or scarf, and you don’t need needles!

Knitting expert Mary Beth Temple has put together a collection of 15 creative patterns in Arm Knitting: How to Make a 30 Minute Infinity Scarf and Other Great Projects . In this book, Mary Beth works with an assortment of Lion Brand yarns in various weights to get you started on your arm knitting journey. Also in the book are well-detailed, step by step photo instructions that will help you become an arm knitting master.

Arm knitting is a great way to introduce friends, children and loved ones to the wonderful world of fiber arts. Take a look at some of the cool projects found in Mary Beth’s book below!


We’re happy to be offering this book at 20% off the retail price at $7.99
. Click here to purchase.

Projects in Arm Knitting book
(pattern images courtesy of Mary Beth Temple: Arm Knitting)

6 Fast-Finish Easter Patterns!

April 4th, 2014

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After a long, cold winter, spring is finally here — which means Easter is just a few weeks away! While this often means buying marshmallow Peeps and hunting for candy-filled eggs for children, crafters are starting their Easter and spring-related projects.

Living in New York, this is the time of year when I like to walk down 5th Avenue and see  people  show off the crazy-fun hats they made just for the “Easter Parade” — traditionally, this time of year was when Victorian churchgoers use to show off their best hats, jewelry, and clothes after church. The event is similar to red carpet movie premieres and award ceremonies you see on TV.

Whether you are crafting for children or yourself, it is a good excuse to think of cute bunnies, sheep, and bright colored eggs.  Here are a few inspirational projects to put in a child’s Easter basket or decorating your home.

Craft Over Easy Eggs Crochet Amigurumi Chocolate Bunny
Over Easy Eggs Crochet Amigurumi Chocolate Bunny Knit Little Lamb
Crochet Chickadee Potholder Knit Little Bunny Crochet Amigurumi Bunny Egg Cozy
Crochet Chickadee Potholder Knit Little Bunny (Check out Selma’s post about making this cute critter) Crochet Amigurumi Bunny Egg Cozy

For more ideas check out Patternfinder and search under “Easter” or “Passover.”  Also check out our Pinterest Board for more Easter inspiration!


Knitted Toys: Little Bunny

April 2nd, 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.

If you’re a knitter who’d rather work with two needles than with double-points, this “Little Bunny” pattern is for you. Of a size easily grasped by small children, she’d make a wonderful gift for a baby or toddler, and be adorable in an Easter basket.

Little Bunny is knitted flat, and seamed up the back, using the mattress stitch. Ears, arms, legs, and tail are made separately and lightly stuffed before they’re fully seamed and sewn together. The tail, knitted from a scrap of Pound of Love in Antique White, is an ingeniously constructed pouf that’s more durable and shapely than a pompom—worth keeping in mind, as young children can be rough with their toys.

While this pattern specifies Lion Brand’s Superwash Merino Cashmere, any medium weight worsted yarn may be used. The Lion Brand website has appropriate substitutions which you can find here.

When knitting toys, it’s a good idea to work with yarn that’s washable and soft. My preference would be for an acrylic like Vanna’s Choice®, or an acrylic blend, like Martha Stewart Crafts Extra Soft Wool BlendTM/MC. I also tend to favor natural colors, like grey, brown, and off-white, for animals, but as the Lion Brand pattern photos often show, stuffed toys can also look great in pastels and bright yarns. The choice is really up to you!

When completed, Little Bunny has a direct, folk-art quality that’s unique and appealing. I can imagine her crossing the prairies in a covered wagon as the dear companion of a small pioneer girl.


Lion Brand Recommendations: The Neutral Cabled Afghan

March 27th, 2014

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l32161aJackie Smyth is a Technical Editor in Lion Brand’s Design Department. Today she shares one of her favorite Lion Brand patterns. 

I work in Lion Brand’s New York Design Department, where every day is a bit like a birthday! Wrapped packages arrive every afternoon – each holding a new and exciting design. On a daily basis, we’re all inspired to add way too many new items to our project queues.

When we opened the box containing the Neutral Cabled Afghan, I knew it was something I should put at the top of my list.

A good friend recently moved from New York (a city of steam heat) to less well heated Dublin, so was clearly in need of something to wrap up in on chilly evenings. The colors of the Neutral Cabled Afghan are a perfect match for his color scheme and the cables are lovely nod to his Celtic surroundings.

I’m a big fan of interesting construction techniques, so I was super excited when I saw how this afghan was made. No sewing! And a different stitch pattern on each of the panels means I’ll never be bored.

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Same Yarn, Super-Sized: Introducing Heartland Thick & Quick®!

March 26th, 2014

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Whether you love our American-made yarns or have a soft spot for the deep-colored hues of Heartland—you’ll love our newest yarn Heartland Thick & Quick®!

Heartland has been one of our most popular yarns because of its soft and silken make, so we decided to make a super bulky version for people to make their projects bigger and better!

It’s a great yarn to go to for soft-to-touch garments, quick afghans, and plush accessories. Check out a few of  our recent knit and crochet patterns using Heartland Thick & Quick® below:

Knit Ski Lodge Cap Crochet Ripple Afghan Knit Deep V Cabled Vest Crochet Flower Power Hat
Knit Ski Lodge Cap Crochet Ripple Afghan Knit Deep V Cabled Vest Crochet Flower Power Hat

Craft Through the 7 Wonders of the Yarn World – Next Stop: Stripes & Chevrons

March 26th, 2014

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Earlier this year Lion Brand unveiled The 7 Wonders of The World – a series of sculptures designed by fiber artist Nathan Vincent. Not only did each sculpture represent one of the 7 Wonders in yarn techniques, but we presented a fashion show where each technique was reflected in a variety of fashions. In the last post in this series we visited texture and it’s importance to knitting, crochet, and felting. Today we present part two: “Stripes & Chevrons.”

CHA-chevron
Nathan Vincent’s sculpture of Mayan Ruins; model wearing Crochet Flame Stitch Coat

The Mayan Ruins is our second Wonder of the Yarn World. Chosen to represent bold colors and the spirit of adventure, you’ll find that the patterns associated with this line are fun and perhaps even a little rebellious. Our Creative Director Adina Klein calls this line, “chevrons gone wild!”

With distinct colorways, vertical chevrons and magnificent mash-ups (“coatigan” anyone) – these pieces are well-suited to the yarncrafter who’s looking to spin that afghan on its head and try something new. The yarns featured include HomespunHomespun® Thick & Quick®, Vanna’s Glamour®, Heartland and our newest super bulky yarn, Heartland Thick & Quick®.

Below we’ve chosen several of the striking designs from the stripes and chevrons collection from our fashion show. In the coming weeks we’ll continue featuring the rest of the 7 Wonders of the Yarn World — from lace to granny squares to modern color work, you’re sure to find inspiration in this amazing collection.

CHA-chevron CHA-chevrons-pncho CHA-chevron-poncho CHA-chevrons
Drawstring Slouch Hat*
with
Knit Zig Zag Dress
with
Ripple Afghan
Crochet Greenpoint Grunge Cap
with
Lace Edged Poncho*
Crochet Sunset Stripe Hat
with
Radiant Ripple Poncho
Crochet Zigzag Hat
with
Chevron Afghan

* pattern coming soon