Lion Brand Notebook

News, Ideas and Information for Crafting with Yarn

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Archive for the 'Yarniverse' Category


Knit and Crochet and Yarn Trends For 2014

December 23rd, 2013

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1. Big, Bigger, Better

Big, Bigger, Best
1) Arm Knitting. 2) “Speed Stix” Knitting Needles. 3) Wool-Ease® Thick & Quick® 4) Homespun® Thick & Quick®

We’ll see people supersizing everything in 2014 with big needle knit and crochet garments and home décor that display chunky, oversized stitches in oversized silhouettes. In 2014 we’ll be showing you a collection of designs that will keep you right on trend. Many of Lion Brand’s yarns are ideal for the “Big” trend including Wool-Ease® Thick & Quick®, Homespun®, Homespun® Thick & Quick®, Hometown USA® . . . with more to come in 2014.

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Yarn Crafting Seen At New York Comic Con

October 30th, 2013

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New York Comic Con has been over for more than two weeks and I’m still suffering from the post-con depression (i.e. that listless, nostalgic feeling you get when you’ve just returned from Disneyland). However I’m still going through all the photos I took from the event.  To my surprise, I saw quite a few yarn crafts and couldn’t help but share them with you.

They were all impressively creative because the majority required no pattern, just a lot of imagination.

 rwby  drwristers boo
This girl crocheted her entire
Ruby Rose (RWBY) cosplay.
Doctor Who wristwarmers
found on Etsy.
An adorable Boo costume from Monsters, Inc.
 r2d2  pokemon  littlesister-bioshock
This needle felted R2D2
took at least 6 months to make.
She just started to learn crochet and wanted to show off her skills with
this Magikarp (Pokemon) hat.
She said she didn’t know how to sew, and crocheted her props for
her Little Sister cosplay (Bioshock) instead.

Ever tried to crochet or knit an entire costume? Or ever seen one that totally impressed you? Tell us!


Exclusive Pattern: Huge & Huggable Mochimochi

October 17th, 2013

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If you loved designer and artist Anna Hrachovec’s books of teeny adorable mochimochi (her little knitted creatures and creations), you’ll love her newest book of giant buddies—just released!

To celebrate, we’re sharing a super-sized version of her popular Petite Pencil, excerpted from the book. Click on the image for the pattern and click on the book cover for more info about it!

Arthur (Plush Pencil) designed by Anna Hrachovec Huge & Huggable Mochimochi by Anna Hrachovec
Arthur: Knitted Plush Pencil Huge & Huggable Mochimochi

Want your own copy of the book? Look out for a giveaway in next week’s issue of The Weekly Stitch!


I Love Yarn Day with Lion Brand

October 11th, 2013

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Here at Lion Brand we love yarn as much as you do, and to show our appreciation we encourage you to share our exclusive “I Love Yarn day” badge on your website, Facebook, Twitter, etc.

Proud Yarn Lover For Life
<a href="http://blog.lionbrand.com/" target="_blank"><img title="Proud Yarn Lover For Life - I Love Yarn Day 2013" src="http://blog.lionbrand.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/I-love-yarn-day-badge2013.png" alt="Proud Yarn Lover For Life - I Love Yarn Day 2013" width="163" height="200" /></a>

Not sure what to do to celebrate ILYD?  Here are some ideas:

  • Wear your latest knit or crochet item.
  • Meet up with a local knitting, crochet group.
  • If you like knitting or crocheting solo: take some time out of your busy day, relax, and pick up that WIP.
  • Visit our Studio or Outlet *(if you’re in the Tri-State area) and find some yarn for a new project. Or visit your LYS.

What are your plans for I Love Yarn Day? Share below or visit our Facebook.

*Note:  Be sure to check store hours as we tend to close early on Friday.


Showing Off the Goods! 9 Featured Projects from the Lion Brand Customer Gallery

August 13th, 2013

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Every once in a while we like to highlight the great project submissions that have been uploaded to our online Customer Gallery, and today I’ve got 9 great projects to share with and inspire you.  It’s always fun to see our patterns come to life by others, especially when made with modifications.  Take a look at the projects below, and see if something you created made a guest appearance!

Modified Snowstorm Hat Pattern #90022AD
Modified Snowstorm Hat Pattern
By: Myra Gabriel
Pattern: Snowstorm Hat
gallery Baby Throw with AppliqueBaby Throw with Toy Car Appliques
By: Myra Slatkoff
Pattern: Sunshine Day Baby Throw
Perfect Crochet CardiganPerfect Crochet Cardigan
By: Mary Cast
Pattern: Perfect Crochet
Cardigan

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Stories from the Road: Remembering My Father and Deacon Jones

June 4th, 2013

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Stories from the Road | Lion Brand NotebookAs 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.]

Related links: 


Play Nice!

May 8th, 2013

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Writer/illustrator/knitter Franklin Habit joins us for his monthly column on the life of a yarn crafter.

I was at a yarn shop a few weeks ago, troubleshooting a thumb gusset in the company of those who understand the importance of good thumb gussets, when the topic of steeks came up.

A steek, in case you haven’t run across the term before, is an opening cut into a piece of hand-knit fabric. There are many ways to create one, but they all end by taking scissors to your knitting. Snip! It gives some knitters the shakes to even contemplate this. It shouldn’t, but it does.

That’s not what I want to write about today.

I mentioned to the group that I’ve launched a class in which the students cut steeks, then sew zippers into the openings. Zipper installation is another thing that gives some knitters the shakes. It shouldn’t, but it does.

That’s also not what I want to write about today.

“I’d take that class,” said one of the junior knitters at the table. There was a murmur of agreement from the other junior knitters. The most junior shook her head. “I’d like to,” she said. “But I’m not good with a sewing machine.”

“You don’t need a sewing machine,” I said. “In my class we use crochet to secure the edges.”

“Forget it,” said the least junior knitter. “I don’t crochet.”

“It’s only basic crochet,” I said. “Even if you haven’t done it before, you can pick this up in sixty seconds.”

“No,” she said, under a slightly curled lip. “I don’t touch crochet hooks. Ever.”

Several of the others–junior and senior–echoed her. No hooks. No hooks ever. Well, maybe to pick up dropped stitches. Never to crochet.

“I don’t crochet,” she said. “I’m a knitter!”

That’s what I want to write about today.

Play Nice! An essay by Franklin Habit for Lion Brand

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Katie Couric Interviews Vanna White–and Learns to Crochet!

May 2nd, 2013

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Vanna White joined Katie Couric on Katie’s show this week to talk about her love of crochet, working with Lion Brand, and our $1 million donation to St. Jude Children’s Hospital. She even shows Katie how to single crochet!

If you missed the segment, watch it below:

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.


I Heard the Trowel Call My Name

April 5th, 2013

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Writer/illustrator/knitter Franklin Habit welcomes spring with a humorous take on two of his favorite hobbies in this month’s column.

A month since I last wrote, and a world of difference outside. The change has only come in the past day or so, and it’s precarious change, but it looks as though we may yet have our spring here in Chicago. This morning, in one of the flowerbeds under my charge, I saw this.

I Heard the Trowel Call My Name | Franklin Habit for Lion Brand

That’s my first sight in six months of one common orange daylily (Hemerocallis).

My reaction to it was the reaction of the hero in one of those awful wartime romance movies where he thinks that his fiancée bit the dust when the bombs hit the old mill and afterwards he pulled from the rubble the bracelet she always wore that said My Heart Is Forever Yours but it turned out that no she flew clear into the next county and landed on a haystack and was physically fine but lost her memory and so spent the rest of the war working as a milkmaid and thinking her name is Phyllis when really it’s Midge but just as he’s returning home and wondering whether his heart will go on she gets smacked upside the head with a milk pail and her memory comes back and she screams MIDGE! MY NAME IS MIDGE! and runs all the way home across the county line and he sees her coming and drops to his knees in rapture while crying a single, noble tear that stops precisely halfway down his cheek.

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Discover the Stories of Patterns

March 17th, 2013

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We all have knit and crochet projects that remind us of a time and a place where we were making that particular project–some happy, some not, but each one is a story that we recall each time we look at that project. If you’re not already familiar with it, Pattern Journal is our monthly newsletter where we share (fiction) tales of the secret lives of patterns.

This month, writer and blogger Selma Moss-Ward joins us to tell the latest story of a pattern. Selma is a freelance writer who combines her love of writing and of knitting in columns, stories, and blog posts. Selma is also an active classical musician, and the caretaker of five wonderful pets. She lives with them and her husband in Rhode Island.

Click here to sign up for this newsletter and receive it on Monday.

In the meantime, Selma shares these photos with us from a recent trip:

My sister lives across the street from this beautiful park in the Echo Park section of LA, and when I visit her I walk with her and her dogs (two dobermans) every morning.  We were in a section of the park where there’s a teaching garden/arboretum for children, and I suddenly saw this flower that someone attached to a tree.  Yarn bomb flower in Elysian Park, LA

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