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  • Christmas in July Pt 3: Glittering Knit Bracelet

    Do you remember being a kid and wanting to proclaim that you were "best friends" with someone? In grade school I had friendships with 2 girls, and I searched high and low for a Best Friends Forever heart necklace that was divided 3 ways.  When the holidays come around, I feel that familiar feeling of wanting to declare my beloved friends, the BEST.  One year I did this by making them all identical bracelets.

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    The Glittering Knit Bracelet is one of my favorite ways to put Vanna's Glamour® to good use.  Every time I go to the lion brand studio in NYC, I stare at the glittery yarn and let my imagination wander.  I was thrilled when I found THIS PATTERN.

    It a wonderful first pattern for those taking their first foray down the cables path.  The stakes are very low, as it is one bracelet and one cable.  After you finish your first one, the others will be a snap. Oh, you are DEFINITELY making more than one. You are going to fall in love with this pattern.

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    Choose one color for all of your Besties so you can all match, or choose each Bestie's favorite color.  After you finish each cuff, find the perfect button as a special finishing detail.  I chose silver for mine, as I thought it brought out the sparkle in the Vanna's glamour.

    Here are a few color suggestions:

    Neutral lovers: Moonstone, platinum, topaz

    Holiday Colors: Diamond, Ruby Red, Bronze, Red Stone

    My favorites: Rhinestone Pink, Lapis

    Seen in the photos: Purple Topaz

    I like to think of this bracelet as more of a cuff because it is substantial enough to be worn alone.  It will become a conversation piece wherever the wearer takes it.  Great as a gift, or a stocking stuffer, make a few extra in case you need a last minute gift!  This cuff is wonderful for all ages. Don't forget to make one for yourself too! Happy Knitting!

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  • Blazingly Beautiful Baskets and Totally Totable Totes

    Why You Totally Have to Tote

    Today has brought another scorcher to New York City.  I’m normally scurrying around, carrying all kinds of things in heavy clothes with lots, and lots, of pockets (Yes, you could call me a… Pocket Monster). But in this kind of heat, who can get away with it?

    The only acceptable way to scuttle to-and-fro while carting around who-knows-what is to do it in a tote bag or some sort of basket-like device. And why would you sling a shoulder bag, canvas carryall, or wicker basket when you could be using this as the perfect opportunity to show off your magnificent fiber arts skills?

    Stripes with a Strap!

    This post was inspired in part by a phenomenal Stripey Hanging Basket by our dear friend Elizabeth at the fabulous Crochet in Color. Elizabeth needed a wide variety of colors, so she went with our fabulous Vanna's Choice. "The colors are so bright and cheerful," says Elizabeth, speaking of Vanna's Choice. "The acrylic holds up well for repeated use and gives it the right amount of form and shape." We couldn't agree more! It's always good to have a bunch of Vanna's Choice hanging around; a project like this is a stashbuster's delight!

    Do You Need to Make This? Totes McGoats...

    If you're like me, you're going to need to take a minute to sit here and soak in this gorgeously silly Totes McGoats tote by the inimitable Moogly. Ah yes. I'm nearly done soaking.

    Sorry, where were we? Totes McGoats. For that one friend you have who is actually obsessed with goats. For your many friends who are obsessed with memes. And for that goat farmer who helped dig your car out of a ditch that one time. And even though I do not believe that fall could possibly be around the corner, it actually is, and this would make a great Halloween bag.

    Moogly used Lion Brand Wool-Ease Chunky - 4 balls of Fisherman and 1 ball of Walnut.

    So make Reginald T. McCoates, for whom the pun was named (and yes the T stands for Totes, improbably!) proud, and work up this lovely goatfriendbag.

    We *Heart* Baskets

    Leave it to Stephanie from AllAboutAmi to capture a heart in a basket (thanks for making it a yellow heart, Stephanie, chuckle!). She certainly has captured our heart. Stephanie used 6 skeins of Hometown USA in “Houston Cream” (Main color) and 1 skein of  Hometown USA in “Madison Mustard” (Contrast color). After you've got the yarn, head over to AllAboutAmi for her in-depth step-by-step, and free pattern!

    Get Chunky With It!

    While you're still at AllAboutAmi take a look at her post about big chunky crocheted baskets made out of Wool-Ease Thick & Quick!

    These big ol' chunkies are based on smaller baskets made by Elizabeth from Crochet in Color!

    From Chunky... to MONKEY!

    Rebecca from Little Monkeys Crochet has come up with a basket just perfect for slinging in your monkey paws! For this gift bag, Rebecca used 24/7 Cotton (by Lion Brand) in color blocks of Lilac, Café Au Lait, and Ecru. You'll want to balls of each. And you'll also want to prepare yourself for the epic-mega-super-hyper-hug that you get from whoever you give this tote basket to as a gift!

    Bonus Basket: The Jewelry Catcher!

    Check out this beautiful little guy! Sure, this isn't exactly a container to go zipping around town with (although I appreciate tremendously the mental image of someone bustling about while holding this basket in their outstretched palm), but this Jewelry Catcher by MamaInAStitch is simply too cute not to post. "I think the small basket in particular would be great to keep next to the kitchen sink to throw rings or jewelry in when you’re doing dishes or cooking," says its creator, Jessica! To get it looking as picture-perfect as Jessica's beautiful photo, you'll want a ball each of Lion Brand Hometown USA in Houston Cream (white) and Phoenix Azalea (pink).

    Get Working, Basket Case!

    That's all we've got room for in our tote basket for this day. Stay tuned for more basket-goodness to come. And for the love of Reginald T. McCoates, make yourself some totes.

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  • The 12 Kits of Christmas in July: The majestic aura of the Tree of Life Afghan

    12 Kits of Christmas

    From the dawn of time, human beings have been breathlessly inspired by the king of the plant world, the Tree. Imposing in stature, existing in a mysterious state that transcends our human-scale notions of consciousness, time, and space, trees have infiltrated the very roots of human imagination, representing spiritual growth, fertility, transformation, and transcendence.

    They also look super great on a knitted afghan!

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    Just take a look at today’s kit, this glorious Tree of Life afghan, from our Christmas in July celebration! Can’t you just feel the thrum of eons of mystique dwelling within these stylized, leafless hulks?

    Close your eyes and picture the wintery landscape where these living, ancient talismans dwell. Do you hear the strange song of ages that pulses soundlessly from the essence of these silent giants? Can you feel the cool air whistling through their branches? I can’t. It’s hot as heck out, and my imagination isn’t that great.

    But that’s not going to keep me from grabbing 10 balls of Wool-Ease: Fisherman and getting to work making this ultra-sweet afghan. Get the pattern, kick up your heels, dial up Terrance Malick’s The Tree of Life on your streaming-platform-of-choice, and start knitting up this genuinely serene, beautiful pattern. It makes for a marvelous gift, perhaps to wrap oneself in while communing with the elder spirits of the forest.

    When you have returned to this plane of reality, keep your aura tuned to our blog for more exclusive kits available only at www.lionbrand.com during our Christmas in July celebration! You get a whopping 20% off these kits, but you’ll need to act faster than a tree: these inspiring kits are on sale until August 7!

    So make like a tree and leave this blog so you can get started knitting!

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