Lion Brand Notebook

News, Ideas and Information for Crafting with Yarn

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Archive for the 'Yarns' Category

Valentine’s Day Gift Patterns for Men, Women and Kids!

February 5th, 2013

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Valentine’s Day is next week, and there’s still plenty of time to whip up some nice, thoughtful gifts to show people in your life you were thinking of them.  Below, I’ve highlighted some patterns that are fun and simple; one can even be made by the whole family!

Knit Soft Lace Scarf

This lace scarf only requires one skein of Martha Stewart Crafts Extra Soft Wool Blend.  This pattern showcases a beautiful stitch definition, and makes for a nice transitional scarf. The Soft Lace scarf is a perfect gift for mom, grandma and even friends.

Crochet All Season Wrister

Wristers are a great unisex gift for anyone you know; they might also make a great gift for that picky man or son in your life. These wristers made in Sock-Ease come in fun stripes as well as solids. For more knit & crochet wristers, click here.


Knit and Crochet Patterns & Yarn Color Recommendations for Super Bowl Sunday XLVII 2013!

January 31st, 2013

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Super Bowl XLVII is this coming Sunday, have you gotten your craft supplies ready? A great way to support your favorite team is by sporting accessories or clothing with the team’s colors; it’s even better when the item is handmade.

There are 3 days left to make an item to show your team pride on Sunday, but you still have some time! All you need is a super bulky yarn like Hometown USA, or, a small project with a worsted weight yarn like Vanna’s Choice. Besides, if you don’t get to finish it in time, you can always use it for the next football season (or wear the item on Monday!).  You can knit or crochet something as easy as a cozy for your canned beverages, or a simple hat or scarf to show your team spirit.

I thought it would be fun to share a few easy patterns that could be completed in time for the game, and colors in Hometown USA and Vanna’s Choice that match the San Francisco 49ers and Baltimore Ravens colors – check them out below!

4 easy knit & crochet patterns to show your pride:

Crochet School Colors Hat
and Scarf Set
Hometown USA

Knit Hat and Scarf Set
Hometown USA

Knit Geaux Tigers Hat
Vanna’s Choice

Crochet Can Cozy
Vanna’s Choice


Project Spotlight: A Winter White DIY Yarn Wreath

January 25th, 2013

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Today I want to share a great DIY craft with you by Randi from the blog Dukes and Duchesses; a bright, sparkly white wreath inspired by the beauty that comes with snow and winter.

Randi combined textured yarns such as Luxe Fur, Vanna’s Glamour and Martha Stewart Crafts Glitter Eyelash, and added a few snowflake accessories to make this sohphisticated DIY wreath.


 Click here for more pictures and instructions to make the wreath!

We’ve seen a lot of different creative wreaths lately, made in various styles; have you been inspired to make a yarn wreath? Share with us in the comments!

Homespun Inspiration from the Lion Brand Yarn Studio

January 11th, 2013

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Ever since I have joined the Lion Brand team I have always looked forward to seeing the new displays in the Lion Brand Studio. They are always so cute and creative with so much detail! Since this month is Homespun yarn month, I decided to take a look at some unconventional Homespun projects that  have been featured in LBYS displays…

(Click on the photos below to enlarge them.)

March 2009

Homespun 2009Homespun yarn LBYS 2009

November 2010

Homespun yarn LBYS 2010Homespun yarn LBYS 2010

December 2012

Homespun yarn LBYS 2012Homespun yarn LBYS 2012

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6 Cute and Cozy Faux Fur Patterns for Both Women and Children

November 9th, 2012

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Faux Fur is still a popular trend for accessories and trims in the cooler months, and you’ll probably be seeing a lot of it this Fall and Winter.  Faux fur can add a touch of warm sophistication to your outfit, or it can add a bit of whimsy and fun.  Whichever way you prefer to wear your faux fur is up to you; take a look at some of our knit and crochet patterns that incorporate either Fun Fur or Luxe Fur for inspiration.


Snow Bunny Hooded Scarf
No need to search for your hat and scarf with the Snow Bunny Hooded Scarf knit in Luxe Fur.  It’s one accessory piece that keeps both your neck and head warm.
Hippie Chic Vest
This Hippie Chic Vest crocheted in Fun Fur would look great over a thermal top, with jeans and flat boots for staying warm and comfy, while looking trendy no matter where you go!
Furry Neck Warmer
This Furry Neck Warmer knit in Luxe Fur is actually a long infinity scarf, which can be double wrapped as a cowl for extra neck protection. Click on the image to see the cowl in its entirety.


Baby Doll Dress
Add a little whimsy to a garment with a Fun Fur trimming as seen in this Baby Doll Dress.
Pretty in Pink Collar
Peter Pan collars are the new trend for DIY projects, try this Pretty in Pink Collar knit in Fun Fur for the little one.
Baby Cocoon Set
Keep the newborn warm and cozy in a Luxe Fur trimmed Sweet Dreams Cocoon and Baby Hat set.

Have you got on board with the Faux Fur trend? What’s your favorite type of project to incorporate your fuzzy yarn?

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A Look at the Different Properties of Wool Yarns

November 6th, 2012

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Sheep And Her Baby/Petr KratochvilAs the cooler temperatures begin to set in, many of you are probably starting to knit or crochet with fibers that have insulating properties for warmth; a common fiber to knit with during this time of year is wool.  Sheep’s fleece is the most popular type of wool fiber because it’s pretty widely available and versatile.  Below, I’ve rounded up a few different wool selections with explanations about their unique qualities, so you can determine which wool might be suitable for your upcoming winter projects.

(image courtesy of Petr Kratochvil)

Fishermen's Wool Fishermen’s Wool is 100% undyed, virgin wool with natural lanolin oil. Lanolin oil is a waxy natural substance found in sheep fleece that acts as a water repellent, which makes Fishermen’s Wool ideal for accessories or garments for skiiers and fishermen. Wool can absorb up to about 30% of its weight in moisture, while still allowing you to feel warm and dry.  Since wool takes dye easily, a skein in Natural or Oatmeal would be nice for experimenting with creating your own hand dyed yarns.  If you’re more interested in learning about dyeing, and appropriate dyes for your yarn, take a look at this previous blog post by Jess, Choose the Right Dye for Your Fiber.

We also love Fishermen’s Wool in it’s natural state to knit up beautiful cables and traditional Aran sweaters, which were worn by Fishermen working off the cost of Ireland in the Aran Islands. Click here for a few Aran sweater patterns.


3 Ways to Create Awesome Color Effects with Amazing Yarn

October 7th, 2012

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I love working with color-change yarns because they make even the simplest stitches look great. But did you know that you can take those self-striping yarns and create even more cool effects with them? Here are three of my favorite techniques in patterns featuring our Amazing yarn:

(Click on the photos to get the patterns on

 Image of Softly Shaded Hat & ScarfImage of Reef Blue Ripple Scarf

Turn Your Project 90°

By making the beginning chain (or cast-on in knitting) the long side (or height) of these scarves and hat, we turn Amazing’s striping on its head and create a totally different look.

It’s a super-simple technique you can use on all kinds of projects to give them a unique spin on stripes, in both knit and crochet.


The Dye Lot Issue: How We Can Help

September 16th, 2012

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You’ve probably had the experience of desperately looking through the bins for the color of yarn you need to make sure there are enough of one dye lot to make your pattern.  It’s almost always an important consideration for bigger projects.  No one wants to put all that work into a sweater or afghan, only to look at it in the light of day and see unwanted color shifts.  It’s difficult to find more than a few balls of the same color in stores, and nearly impossible to find many of the same dye lot.

At Lion Brand, we take the worry out of the process.  When you order from, you are guaranteed to get the same dye lot for every color, no matter how many balls you need.  And, you don’t have to worry about being short a ball because you can order extra and return unused balls to us.

It’s a little thing that makes your projects a big success.

Related links:

A Look at Wool-Ease: a Classic Worsted-Weight, Easy-Care Yarn + 9 Fan-Favorite Patterns

August 17th, 2012

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I just came back from Stitches Midwest, a knit/crochet convention put together by XRX Inc. (home of Knitter’s Magazine) – and had a great time talking with different people who love to yarncraft.   While talking to folks in our Lion Brand booth, I realized that Wool-Ease, our traditional worsted weight wool blend yarn is very popular amongst both knitters and crocheters, and for good reason!

Wool-Ease is a great garment yarn which can be machine washed and dried; making it the perfect match for children’s clothes. I personally love the stitch definition and functionality of  Wool-Ease.  Cables work up beautifully, and a scarf or hat knit/crochet in this yarn will definitely keep you warm. Below, I’ve shared some of our popular Wool-Ease patterns in sweaters, afghans and accessories.

Pullovers and Cardigans are perfect projects for Wool-Ease.  Below our Lion Brand pattern image, you’ll also find images of a submitted project from Lion Brand users who used the patterns for their garments.

Alpine Zip-Neck Pullover
Knit Alpine Zip-Neck Pullover
Ladylike Pullover
Crochet Ladylike Pullover
Cabled Women's Cardigan
Knit Cabled Women’s Cardigan
Thanks to Susan Theiss for the submission.
Ladylike Pullover 
Thanks to Carrington Cynthea for her submission.
Thanks to Linda Keigwin for her submission.


Top 10 Colors for Fall

August 15th, 2012

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Every season, Pantone, the world’s leading color authority, releases its list of trending fashion colors. To help you incorporate these beautiful shades into your yarncrafting, we’ve selected yarn shades that best match Pantone’s 10 shades for autumn. Check out the trends below!

French Roast Martha Stewart Crafts Extra Soft Wool Blend in Mink
Martha Stewart Crafts Extra Soft Wool Blend
in Mink
Vanna's Choice in Espresso
Vanna’s Choice in Espresso
Fishermen's Wool in Nature's Brown
Fishermen’s Wool in
Nature’s Brown
Honey Gold Hometown USA in Las Vegas Gold
Hometown USA in
Las Vegas Gold
Wool-Ease in Gold
Wool-Ease in Gold
Vanna's Choice in Honey
Vanna’s Choice in
Tangerine Tango Hometown USA in Tennessee Tango
Hometown USA in
Tennessee Tango
Vanna's Chocie in Radiant Orange
Vanna’s Choice in
Radiant Orange
Silky Twist in Tangerine
Silky Twist in
Pink Flambé Vanna's Choice in Rose
Vanna’s Choice in
LB Collection Cotton Bamboo in Hibicus
LB Collection Cotton
in Hibicus
Martha Stewart Crafts Extra Soft Wool Blend in Flamingo
Martha Stewart Crafts
Extra Soft Wool Blend

in Flamingo
Rose Smoke Baby's First in Twinkle Toes
Baby’s First in
Twinkle Toes
Wool-Ease in Blush Heather
Wool-Ease in Blush
Martha Stewart Crafts Merino in Milk Glass Pink
Martha Stewart Crafts
in Milk Glass
Rhapsody Hometown USA in Seattle Sea Mist
Hometown USA in
Seattle Sea Mist
Vanna's Glamour in Purple Topaz
Vanna’s Glamour in
Purple Topaz
Martha Stewart Crafts Roving Wool in Lavender Soap
Martha Stewart Crafts
Roving Wool
Lavender Soap
Titanium Superwash Merino Cashmere in Slate
Superwash Merino
in Slate
Martha Stewart Crafts Cotton Hemp in Slate
Martha Stewart Crafts Cotton Hemp in Slate
Vanna's Choice in Silver Grey
Vanna’s Choice in Silver Grey
Olympian Blue Cotton-Ease in Turquoise
Cotton-Ease in
Homespun in Montana Sky
Homespun in
Montana Sky
LB Collection Organic Wool in Dark Teal
LB Collection Organic
in Dark Teal
Ultramarine Green Hometown USA in Grand Rapids Green
Hometown USA in
Grand Rapids Green
Martha Stewart Crafts Mambo in Sea Turtle
Martha Stewart Crafts
in Sea Turtle
Jiffy in Country Green
Jiffy in Country Green
Bright Chartreuse Jiffy in Apple Green
Jiffy in Apple Green
Hometown USA in Key Lime
Hometown USA in
Key Lime
Kitchen Cotton in Kiwi
Kitchen Cotton in

What do you think of autumn’s hottest shades? Let us know in the comments below!