Lion Brand Notebook

News, Ideas and Information for Crafting with Yarn

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Archive for the 'Tips & How To' Category

Planning on Crocheting or Knitting for Mother’s Day?

April 26th, 2016

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by Tamara Kelly of Moogly
Planning on Crocheting or Knitting for Mother's Day?
Whether you have kids, or you were a kid once (which is, well, everybody!), you probably remember those classroom art projects for Mother’s Day. Clay, macaroni, paint, and maybe even a bit of yarn all combined to make something that was full of love, if not raw artistic talent. I have a whole collection of interesting clay items and glued together poems from my own three kids, and as they get older and the handmade presents dwindle, it makes me a little sad to be honest.

My own mother, who had 6 children, has a very impressive collection on her dresser top of tchotchkes and doodads, drawings and trinkets. The first thing I remember making for her was a small wooden heart, which my grandfather helped me whittle. She loved the heart – or at least pretended to – but was appalled that he let me loose with a pocket knife at only 4 years old! Thankfully, no harm done – and last I looked, she still had the heart.

Now that I’m a mother myself, I know just how special those handmade items are! And while not every mother is the kind that enjoys crafted gifts, we knitters and crocheters are fortunate enough to have the skills to continue creating for our moms, when we are lucky enough to still have them to craft for.

Of course, when we were kids, the crafts were more often than not teacher directed – I don’t know any kid that would come up with the idea of printing out a slightly sappy poem and gluing it next to their hand print on a piece of construction paper. Now, as adults, it’s time to step back and think about what mom would really like and appreciate – not what we just happen to want to crochet or knit for her!

So before you pick a pattern and yarn, be sure to consider these 3 factors!

1. Color
Does your mom like brights? Pastels? Jewel tones? Animal prints? Does she have neutrals around the house but always wear a pop of color? Take into account whether it’s a wearable accessory or a home decor item – her favorite color might be green, but if she never wears it, use that emerald yarn to make a blanket or throw pillow.

2. Style
Is mom’s style sleek and modern, fun and funky, or classic and traditional? More pineapple doily, or colorblocked cowl? Triangle shawl, or rectangle wrap – or bikini top with motorcycle leathers? You know crochet and knit patterns are out there to suit every taste with a little searching!

3. Climate
There are gorgeous crocheted and knitted afghans out there to suit any taste and style, but if mom has retired to a tropical climate, they aren’t the best pick! If it’s always cloudy and rainy in her locale, then a floppy yarn sunhat won’t get much use.

Beyond these factors of course, hobbies and lifestyle can affect your choices as well. If she hates cooking, a set of crocheted dishcloths won’t suddenly inspire her to take up baking. If she collects goat figurines, look for a goat basket pattern (I happen to know where you can find one of those…). If she is traveling the country year-round in an RV, make sure any gift is both practical and small enough to fit in relatively cramped quarters!

So don’t just follow the teacher’s instructions – put some thought into it! Moms are notoriously difficult to come up with gifts for – especially when they like to answer “Oh nothing, dear” to requests for ideas. And for inspiration, there are literally thousands of free patterns here in the Lion Brand Pattern Finder, as well as elsewhere around the web.

And if she’s a crochet or knitter herself… well, you can always order her some gorgeous luxury yarn from the LB Collection and call it a day!

Get the Look for Less – Make a Jumbo Pom Pom Bag Charm!

April 20th, 2016

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Celebrities Love Bag Charms: Emma Roberts, Cara Delevigne, Kylie Jenner, and Lily Allen

Jumbo pom pom bag charms are the must-have accessory for spring. We’re seeing them on celebrity purses everywhere – Emma Roberts, Cara Delevigne, Kylie Jenner, and Lily Allen are all fans, just to name a few! We love this trend because it’s so easy to DIY – all you need is a ball of yarn and a jumbo pom pom maker. Give it a try with our easy to follow photo tutorial!

1 ball of Vanna’s Choice® (pictured in NEW Shocking Rose)
Clover Jumbo Pom Pom Maker
Keyring with chain (you can find keychain parts on Amazon, or get thrifty and repurpose the parts from an old keychain!)

PS –  this look is vegan-friendly!

Make a Jumbo Pom Pom!


5 Ways to Style a Circle or Triangle Shawl

April 20th, 2016

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There are so many beautiful shawls that you can make with Shawl in a Ball, you’ll be sporting a different one every day! Shira shared her style tips for a rectangle shawl but today she’s rocking the Easy Half Circle Shawl. She’ll show you even more ways to wear your new favorite accessory! Try these style with a triangle shawl like the Somerset Shawl too!

How do you wear your shawl?

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Get the pattern!


Yoga for Knitters and Crocheters: Open Your Gate Pose!

April 2nd, 2016

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April is Stress Awareness Month! Knitting and crocheting is a great way to clear your mind and relax but have you tried doing yoga? Shira got together with yoga instructor AJ Wolbrum to try out some poses that are perfect for crafters.

Join Shira in the Open Your Gate Pose to stretch out your shoulders, hands, and arms!

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Stay tuned as we bring you more poses this month!

Spice Up Your Headphones with This Mini Yarnbomb Craft!

February 15th, 2016

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In preparation for tonight’s Grammy Awards, brand ambassador Shira Blumenthal shares a simple craft for music lovers of all ages!

I love music.

A fun fact you might not know about me is that I used to study voice.  I was a singer.  Its true! Before I realized that yarn was my calling, I wanted to be the next Celine Dion. Because of that I simply love music and I love being up to date on all the new songs.  I cannot live without my iPhone — it’s basically my jukebox.

With the Grammys fast approaching I wanted to do a crafty project having to do with music.  I wanted to yarnbomb my headphones.  Not only is it a fun thing to do, but it’s an easy project that can be finished while you watch the Grammys.

Maybe I have been hanging out with London Kaye so much that I just wanted to just yarn bomb something and I finally did!

Get crazy with the colors you choose! I picked Vanna’s Glamour: Copper because it was subtle and not too crazy. It also goes well with my coat and hair but, I think come spring and summer, I might change it up to something bright and fun.  I would recommend a sport weight to worsted weight yarn for this project.

After you’re done, while you’re listening to your favorite Grammy nominee, take a selfie with your new yarn bombed head phones and post it to the comments below. I can’t wait to see how yours came out!