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Knitting

Helpful knitting articles from Leisure Arts
  • Self-Care Gifts That Will Change Your Holiday Shopping Routine

    The holidays are always a marathon, Makers, especially if you're a creative person. You're working overtime trying to create gifts for friends and family, spending optimal time and money on thoughtful gifts that will be thrown into the depths of the winter closet for years to come. Instead of slaving away over a throw pillow this year, why not try the gift that keeps on giving? self-care! Self-love and self-care are extremely important to keep you focused and driven in your day to day life, which can be a major struggle with stresses like bills, work, and the sheer fact that Elf On A Shelf exists (It's honestly the face. Have you seen that thing?). Staying positive and making sure that you get what you need is a must when it comes to your mental and physical stability.

    self-care Scrub - Give and Make Home Apothecary

    How does self-care relate to my holiday shopping list?

    Now I know it seems like I've gone on a tangent, but it's simple. If you've ever spent time thinking of ways to improve your mental and physical health, you can be sure that your loved ones have too. Mom could use an extra spa day (or three), and dad could probably use some some much needed time off from work. Your sister or brother could be looking for something soft for their skin. This is where you come in! Giving the gift of self-care is like saying to your special someone, "I care about you, and you deserve this treat". These gifts won't be shoved in a closet until next year, they'll be used immediately, because they're functional, luxurious, and relaxing. These gifts can range from bath scrubs and perfumes, soaps and lotions, color therapy kits and journals, and even something as simple as paints to play with. Check out some of Leisure Arts' DIY self-care gifts that will show your family that you care about their long term well being!

     

    Self-Care Crafting

    self-care Lotus Diamond Art Kit - leisurearts.com

    Diamond Art is one of our new crafts, but the act of diamond painting has been around for quite some time. Paint with beautiful 13 faceted diamonds onto high quality color printed fabric, fashioning your own shimmering tapestry to decorate your wall, adhere to a canvas bag, pillow or more! It's relaxing like color by number, but more luxurious because you're painting with diamonds. The act of matching the colors and lining the gemstones up will cure anyone's OCD and will have you dazzling any canvas you can get your hands on. This craft is perfect if you want to just have some "girl time" with the besties, "bonding time" with your kids, or "me time" for when you just want to relax.

     

    self-care Adult Coloring Kit -leisurearts.com

    Adult coloring has proven to be one of the most relaxing and stimulating crafts of the past few years. the act of mindlessly coloring and controlling where you want washes of color to go puts you at ease, and allows you to meditate for a moment and collect your thoughts with every new page. This Adult Coloring Kit from our website includes everything you'll need for the ultimate coloring experience: 1 coloring book with 48 designs, 12 gel pens, 12 colored pencils, and a pencil sharpener.

     

    self-care Homemade Tub Tea - Home Apothecary

    There's no better self-care gift than spa essentials. Make and Give Home Apothecary is a great book from author Stephanie Rose that is all about making beautiful and functional self-care gifts with all natural ingredients. From perfumes, to coffee massage bars, to fun little trinkets like Tub Tea (above), this book gives you a plethora of options to gift to anyone who you think needs to escape for a bit.

     

    Self-Care Daily Inspiration Flip Book - Leisure Arts

    If you're looking for more relaxing coloring inspiration, check out our Daily Inspiration Flip Book!  this dynamic duo of a coloring book will give you inspirational daily quotes that you can admire from afar or fill with color! With 40 inspiring one-liners printed on double-sided card-stock, this item is the perfect self car gift to adorn in your office or bedroom.

     

    self-care Happy Abstracts - Leisure Arts

    For The abstract artist in your life, we have the perfect book. Happy Abstracts is a great how-to book on creating vibrant and quirky designs for yourself as well as others. With pullouts of eccentric paintings from author Etta Vee, this book is the perfect balance between giving and creating in the form of colorful abstract artworks.

    self-care Aromatherapy Jewelry - Leisure Arts

    Self-care can be done anywhere, and can be with you at any time. Like these amazing Aromatherapy Jewelry designs! Let these absorbent lava beads absorb essential oils that will let you take a moment from your busy day and smell the roses (or patchouli, you pick the scent). With the modern and fresh new takes on DIY jewelry from this book, you're sure to be a showstopper at your next holiday event.

     

    Self-Care for the Yarnist : Crochet and Knit

    self care screen-shot-2018-11-28-at-11-48-04-am screen-shot-2018-11-28-at-11-47-55-am

    Tend to your own Zen Garden - of yarn. These adorable and long-lasting patterns from Make A Crochet Garden (above) will leave you with a garden that will never wilt, and a garden that you can endlessly expand. With varied cacti and adorable displays, you can't not be relaxed while creating these dainty yarn plants.

     

    self-care Make In A Weekend Comfy Knit Throws - leisurearts.com

    Self-Care can be as simple as a cozy blanket to wrap yourself up in. These Patterns from Make In A Weekend Comfy Knit Throws are the perfect mediation buddies that you can make in a simple weekend, with easy to follow instructions!

     

    Gifting any one of these self-care beauties would bring a smile to anyone's face, and it should bring a smile to your face knowing that you create a gift that will actually be put to use this holiday season. So go the extra mile this holiday season, and gift the gift of self-care!

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    Have you ever given a self-care gift? Share with us in the comments! Be sure to follow our Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter to check on any new self-care news we might have your you.

     

    Take care of yourselves, Makers!

    -Leisure Arts Team

  • A Feast of Creativity! Fun Projects to Get You in the Thanksgiving Spirit.

     

    Halloween is over, Makers. The skulls and cauldrons are being put away until next year, and turkeys and cornucopias are taking their place! Thanksgiving is a holiday that's meant for endless conversation over great food, and even better company. But there tends to be one thing overlooked every year when you plan for your grand feast : the decor! Decorations make or break the ambiance of a dinner, and for a meal as important as Thanksgiving, you definitely don't wanna drop the ball. Which is why we've got your back! We've put together a few fun projects in all types of mediums that will make your Thanksgiving environment so mesmerizing, no one will even notice that you almost burnt the sweet potato pie.

    Look for your category, if you're craft specific, or dive in and try out a project in a new craft! The choice is totally yours.

    Give Thanks With Crochet Goodies

    Thanksgiving Crafts Nature's Gifts For Baby Pattern

    As any great craftsman knows, the best way to give thanks during the holidays is through home made gifts and trinkets! If you're a crochet lover at heart, then you've come to the right blog post. We've got some nifty patterns for you to try out, and give out to the people you love. Just look at the adorable fox hat and matching blanket pattern that you can make for the little ones in your life (above). This getup from Nature's Gifts For Baby  will be sure to get loads of attention for Fall, and your baby can be cute and comfortable as they're showered with cheek pinches and waves of "awww".

    Thanksgiving Crafts Little Animals Headgear - Turkey Beanie
    Thanksgiving Crafts Little Animals Headgear - Turkey Headband

    If you've got someone a little older that you're making for, check out these Turkey Transformation patterns from Little Animals Headgear (Left). These cute and functional headband and beanie patterns are sure to be a big hit with the family during Thanksgiving Dinner. Plus, if you're not dying of cuteness overload from these pictures, then your heart is made of stuffing, and you didn't eat enough cranberry sauce. The pattern can be adjustable based on how big or small the person you're crocheting for is, so this pattern can be made for a wide age range! It's holiday gift patterns like these that really show that you're thinking outside of the oven for Thanksgiving this year. Not that there's anything wrong with thinking inside the oven, of course. Thanksgiving is supposed to be a day for eating! Which is why we have these next few patterns just for the kitchen.

     

    Thanksgiving Crafts Crocheted Lace Trimmings - Quick Thread Projects

    If you've always been known for your upscale Thanksgiving soirees, then this is the project for you. Quick Thread Projects (above) is known for its fun and trendy projects for any occasion, and this Lace Trimming project certainly takes the cake (or pumpkin pie). The lacework can elevate the decor of your event, or give a little extra oomph to that store-bought Jam that you're trying to pass off as homemade (you can't fool me with that unmarked mason jar).

     

    Thanksgiving Crafts White Lace Runner - Filet Table Runners

    This project is specifically for the table. Though your guests might not notice it immediately -because they're focused on the delicious buffet in front of them- it has been a traditional part of Thanksgiving decor for decades, and we can't not include tradition in a classic holiday like this one. We're talking table runners, makers! Specifically, this White Lace Filet Runner from Filet Table Runners (above). They've been the perfect pairing to that apple print tablecloth that everyone remembers they had for at least one Thanksgiving, I'm 89.9% sure of that.

     

    Knit Some Handy Kitchen Helpers for Thanksgiving Dinner

    Don't be fooled by all of our cool crochet crafts, we have some awesome knit stuff too. These Thanksgiving themed projects make the perfect handy helpers that are festive and functional!

    Thanksgiving Crafts Dishcloths for Special Days
    Thanksgiving Crafts Corn Cob Dishcloth - Make In A Weekend Potholders and Dishcloths
    Thanksgiving Crafts Apple Potholder - Make In A Weekend Potholders and Dishcloths

    These crafty potholders and dishcloths from Make in a Weekend Potholders and Dishcloths (right) will brighten up any kitchen space, and make it look like you have an eclectic taste in home decor. That corn cob dishcloth looks good enough to eat! Let these little baubles be your good luck charms when cooking Thanksgiving dinner. If the funky patterns aren't up to your speed, then try these simple and subtle designs from Dishcloths For Special Days! Modern or Classic, you choose which style is best for you and your family.

    Festive Coloring - Fun For Everyone

    Thanksgiving Crafts Bountiful Wonders Coloring Sheet

    Coloring! The craft that makes you feel like a kid again, but in the best and most relaxing way possible. Adult coloring has become one of those mindless and relaxing crafts that you can enjoy whenever and wherever you want. Which is why you need these festive coloring books for the upcoming Thanksgiving Holiday. No one ever thinks about the down time during family get togethers - when you're waiting for the food to be finished. Even if you did think about it last year, it was probably already too late, and then you became stuck in between channels of boring small talk between your aunts and uncles that will just be repeated when Christmas comes (don't worry, we have Christmas coloring books too).

    Thanksgiving Crafts Color On The Go - Welcome Fall
    Thanksgiving Crafts Color On The Go - Gather Together

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Adult coloring was made for down time, so this Thanksgiving, when you feel the need to be creative, check out the beautiful content in Bountiful Wonders (above header), Color on the Go - Fall, and Color On The Go - Gather Together (above).

    If you're looking for ways to repurpose those pages after they're colored, check out our DIY Coloring Decor post we did for National Coloring Day.

     

    Bonus : Thanksgiving Fun with Plastic Canvas

    Thanksgiving Crafts Holiday Fancies - Give Thanks Napkin Holder

    This is for the festive turkeys that want to go the extra mile this holiday. Plastic Canvas is a fun and addicting craft to start, and what better project to start with than this adorable napkin holder, from Holiday Fancies, perfect for any table. Pair this with your table runners and lace trim, and you've got yourself a swanky Thanksgiving.

     

    Share Your Projects With Us! 

    Which of these projects do you want to try, Makers? Give us a shout out in the comments or on our Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. We love to see what you're working on!

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    Happy Decorating!

    -Leisure Arts Team

  • The Perfect Knit Pumpkin Centerpiece!

    You might have seen the pictures of our Leisure Arts Halloween festivities yesterday! (If you haven't seen them, click here!) If you have a watchful crafter's eye, one thing might have stuck out to you. This Knit Pumpkin!

    Crochet Pumpkin Leisure Arts! Halloween Knit Pumpkin - Leisure Arts

     

    Isn't this adorable? The soft yarn and muted orange makes this plushy pumpkin perfect for a warm Fall dinner setting. As a special treat from us, we're giving you this Knit Pumpkin pattern FOR FREE! Here's how it's done:

     

    THE KNIT PUMPKIN

    Stem and Top

    With Brown, tie beginning yarn between the third and fourth st to form a ring.

    Rnds 1-3: Knit around.

    Rnd 4: Increase in each st around: 6 sts.

    Rnd 5: Beginning with the next loop bind of 6 sts, place marker in remaining st.

    Rnd 6: Beginning with the next loop, (increase in next bind off st, pick up one in next st) around: 9 sts and one marked st.

    Rnd 7: Beginning with marked st, bind off 9 sts, place marker in remaining st.

    Rnd 8: Beginning with next loop, increase in each bind of st around: 18 sts and one marked st.

    Rnd 9: Beginning with marked st, bind off 18 sts, cut yarn after second working loop and pull through remaining st.

    Body

    Rnd 1: Join Orange and pick up one loop in each bind off st: 18 sts.

    Rnd 2: Beginning with next loop, bind off 18 sts, place marker in remaining st.

    Rnd 3: Beginning with next loop, (pick up in next bind off st, increase in next bind off st) around: 27 sts and one marked st.

    Rnd 4: Leaving marked st unworked, knit each st around.

    Rnd 5: Beginning with marked st, bind off 27 sts, place marker in remaining st.

    Rnd 6: Beginning with next loop, (pick up in next 2 bind off sts, increase in next bind off st) around: 36 sts and one marked st.

    Rnd 7: Leaving marked st unworked, knit each st around.

    Rnd 8: Beginning with marked st, bind off 36 sts, place marker in remaining st.

    Rnd 9: Beginning with next loop, (increase in next bind off st, pick up in next 3 bind off sts) around: 45 sts and one marked st.

    Rnd 10: Leaving marked st unworked, knit each st around.

    Rnd 11: Beginning with marked st, bind off 45 sts, place marker in remaining st.

    Rnd 12: Beginning with next loop, pick up one st in each bind off st around: 45 sts and one marked st.

    Rnd 13: Leaving marked st unworked, knit each st around.

    Rnd 14: Beginning with marked st, bind off 45 sts, place marker in remaining st.

    Rnds 15-26: Repeat Rnds 12-14, 4 times.

    Rnd 27: Beginning with next loop, pick up one st in each bind off st around: 45 sts and one marked st.

    Rnd 28: Leaving marked st unworked, (K2 tog, K7) around: 40 sts and one marked st.

    Rnd 29: Beginning with marked st, bind off 40 sts, place marker in remaining st.

    Rnd 30: Beginning with next loop, pick up one st in each bind off st around: 40 sts and one marked st.

    Rnd 31: Leaving marked st unworked, (K6, K2 tog) around: 35 sts and one marked st.

    Rnd 32: Beginning with marked st, bind off 35 sts, place marker in remaining st.

    Rnd 33: Beginning with next loop, pick up one st in each bind off st around: 35 sts and one marked st.

    Rnd 34: Leaving marked st unworked, (K2 tog, K5) around: 30 sts and one marked st.

    Rnd 35: Beginning with marked st, bind off 30 sts, place marker in remaining st.

    Rnd 36: Beginning with next loop, pick up one st in each bind off st around: 30 sts and one maked st.

    Rnd 37: Leaving marked st unworked, (K3, K2 tog) around: 24 sts and one marked st.

    Rnd 38: Beginning with marked st, bind off 24 sts, place marker in remaining st.

    Rnd 39: Beginning with next loop, pick up one st in each bind off st around: 24 sts and one marked st.

    Rnd 40: Leaving marked st unworked, K2 tog around: 12 sts and one marked st.

    Rnd 41: Beginning with marked st, bind off 12 sts, place marker in remaining st.

    Rnd 42: Beginning with next loop, pick up one st in each bind off st around: 12 sts and one marked st.

    Rnd 43: Leaving marked st unworked, K2 tog around: 6 sts.

    Rnd 44: Beginning with marked st, bind off 6 sts; cut yarn 6 loops past the last worked st. Cut loops open to form a long end.

    Thread yarn needle with long end and weave through bound off sts; gather tightly and secure end.

    OPTIONAL JACK O' LANTERN FACE

    Eye (Make 2)

    With Black, cast on 4 sts.

    Row 1: K2 tog twice: 2 sts.

    Row 2: K2 tog; cut yarn 6 loops past the last worked st. Cut loops open to form a long end.

    Mouth

    With Black and beginning with 13th loop, pull 12th loop through 13th loop, pull 11th loop through 12th loop, work in same manner using all loops from cast on; cut yarn 8 loops past the last worked st. 

    Cut loops open to form a long end.

    Using photo as a guide, attach facial featured.

     

    Halloween Crochet Pumpkin - Leisure Arts! Halloween Knit Pumpkin - Leisure Arts!
    Thanksgiving Pumpkin- Leisure Arts Thanksgiving Knit Pumpkin- Leisure Arts

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Ta-Da! You have yourself a perfect centerpiece that can last you through the entire season of Fall. The best part about this pattern is that you can make just the Pumpkin base, or you can add the Jack O' Lantern face for Halloween! The versatility in this design is what makes it a perfect project to take on, no matter the skill level.

  • Join The #HumansThatYarn Movement From The Craft Yarn Council

    The Craft Yarn Council (CYC) represents the leading yarn companies, accessory manufacturers, magazine, book publishers, and consultants in the yarn industry. For more than 35 years the Council has sponsored a wide range of promotional and educational programs, including its highly acclaimed Certified Instructors Program, Discover Knit and Crochet classes, and its popular I Love YARN Day event (the second Saturday in October), which offers a virtual meeting place for the nation's knitters and crocheters. They're working on a great campaign right now for Fall that's meant to break you out of your crafty comfort zone, and encourage you to see how yarn can have multiple functional and fashionable uses.

    A New Way to Play With Yarn From The Craft Yarn Council

    Craft Yarn Council

    Yarn encompasses a wide array of crafts, including knitting, crochet, macrame, weaving, punch needle and much more. But more than that, yarn encompasses a wide array of people. Rather than focus on one specific type of yarn project, the Craft Yarn Council’s Fall 2018 campaign will focus on the people behind yarn crafts. Humans That Yarn is an inclusive campaign that aims to showcase all the different types of crafts that can be made with yarn and the different types of people who identify as a 'yarnist'.

    Craft Yarn Council
    The campaign has several goals aimed at making the fiber world more inclusive. One of those goals is to break down the barriers of entry for people who may see yarn crafting as too difficult or uncool. Another is to encourage people who already craft with yarn to take up a new yarn craft. Craft Yarn Council studies have shown that the most common reasons for not participating in yarn crafts are lack of knowledge on how to get started (32%) and the perception that knitting/crocheting (and other yarn crafts) are difficult to learn (28%). Recent research has also shown that 48% of non-knitters and crocheters use yarn in other ways, whether they are wrapping yarn around a dowel for a wall hanging or around cardboard to make pompoms.

    Craft Yarn Council

    How To Be The Very Best #Yarnist

    Through social media interviews, videos, photography and blog posts, the campaign will increase interest and conversation about yarn crafts. The term “yarnist” will be introduced alongside the campaign to demonstrate that no matter how you use yarn, you are a “yarnist” (yarn artist). For inspiration, ideas and tips for teaching others a new yarn craft, free patterns, yarn project ideas, giveaways and more, make sure to check out our social media pages, including Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest. Tag your posts with #humansthatyarn and #yarnist. Here's some inspiration from us on how to be the very best!

    Dare to be Bold.

    Humans That Yarn Rainbow Yarn Vases - Yarn Crafts

    Yarn can be used for so many crafts, and can create so many new life hacks and trendy home decor projects. Just like these rainbow vases (above), you can use yarn to create endless possibilities for your common home decor items!

    It's not just for Crochet and Knit!

    Humans That Yarn A New Twist on Macrame - Wall Hanging

    Yarn is associated with popular crafts like knit and crochet, but those aren't limiting the medium at all! You can create hybrid craft projects all the time using yarn, just look at this stunning macrame project (above).

    The Best Yarnists Share!

    Humans That Yarn Yarn Crafts - Pom-Pom Wreath
    Humans That Yarn Yarn Crafts - Arrow Wall Hanging

    Yarn gifts make for the best soft and cuddly gifts around. Why not make as many as possible and share the love? People can never have too much wall decor, especially during the holiday seasons!

    As you can see, there are tons of unique ways to become a #yarnist and join the movement. So, what are you waiting for? Go out into the world of yarn and go buy some baubles. Discover a new side of creativity as you hashtag your way through the next few months, and become part of the #HumansThatYarn Movement.

    Have fun, Yarnists!

    -Leisure Arts Team

  • Here's 10 Ways You Can Show Your Love For I Love Yarn Day!

    Hey Makers! It's the most wonderful time of the year, and no, it's not Christmas. It's I Love Yarn Day on the 13th! A National Holiday that feels like Christmas to us seasoned craftsman. We get to show our appreciation for the fuzzy and fluffy crafts that have kept us company over generations. We use yarn for all types of crafts, for quick fixes, for the occasional birthday party, and for finishing touches. It's an all encompassing medium. But, have we ever shown yarn how much we care about it?

    If you haven't, that's okay. Make up for lost time! We've put together a list of ways that you can show your love for your multicolored and miscellaneous yarn bin tucked away in your closet at home (don't lie, we all have one).

     

    Knit Or Crochet For A Cause

    There's nothing better than doing something nice for others. Charity is the best way to lend a helping hand to people in need, and what better way to lend a helping had than with crafts? We can help you think of some great patterns with A Charity Guide for Crochetand A Charity Guide for Knitters, based on what craft you prefer. Just look at some of these patterns! A blanket with pockets? Insanity. Show your Love by trying out some of these daring designs.

    I Love Yarn Day Charity Guide For Crocheters
    Charity Guide For Knitters Charity Guide For Knitters
    Blanket With Pockets Charity Guide Crochet Blanket With Pockets Charity Guide Crochet

     

     

    Update Your Space With A Stylish Wall Hanging

    Vamp up your Home Decor situation with a new wall hanging! Yarn can create the most versatile styles of wall hangings, ranging from pristine and proper one color wall tapestries, to grungy and eclectic color blocked frocks. Learn to Make Woven Wall Hangings and Wall Hangings are two books that show a grand variety of wall decor patterns that you can choose from.

     

    Spiral Stem Wall Hanging Spiral Stem Wall Hanging
    Triangle Woven Wall Hanging Triangle Woven Wall Hanging

     

    Give The Gift Of Cozy Feet!  

    Ah, Fall. The best time for leg warmers, scarves, and fuzzy socks. Check out these rockin' awesome sock books that will keep your feet warmer than a Pumpkin Spice Latte.

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    More Fun Socks - Knit 

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    Make Fun Socks - Crochet 

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    Slippers for the Family

     

    Amigurumi – What’s Not To Love!

    Amigurumi! The craft everyone loves to make, but hates to pronounce. Homemade Amigurumi stuffed animals knock your traditional stuffed animals out of the ballpark when it comes to quality, and cuteness factor. I mean, just look at these adorable designs from two of our Leisure Arts books, Cute Amigurumi Monsters and Huggable Amigurumi

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    Make someone an adorable Amigurumi doll for I Love Yarn Day!

    Make Your I Love Yarn Day A Little Brighter With A Pom-Pom Project

    Pom-Poms aren't just for cheerleading! They can also be for home decor. There are a lot of things that you can make with a simple pom-pom, big or small. All it takes is l little bundle of yarn. Show your love for yarn projects by trying out some of these pom-pom patterns in Crazy About Pom-Poms

    screen-shot-2018-10-11-at-11-43-02-am Pom-Pom Dream Catcher - Crazy About Pom-Poms

     

     

    Make an old love new again with Macramé

    Macramé is one of those vintage crafts that is making a hard and fast comeback to the maker community. We have been seeing new Macramé projects all over our social sites, and it's hard not to notice beautiful projects like these ones from A New Twist On Macramé and Get Started in MacraméIf you haven't tried Macramé, give it a go for I Love Yarn Day!

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    Give the Gift of Imagination with creative toys and playsets

    Do you have a special little one to shop for? If you do, show your love for yarn by making the best baby toy patterns around! Busy Baby Boxes and Baby Stacks have some great homemade toy patterns that give your baby that extra nudge to learn and process.

    screen-shot-2018-10-11-at-11-28-23-am screen-shot-2018-10-11-at-11-28-38-am

     

    Pass Your Love Of Yarn To Someone Special

    One thing that we need to keep alive is passing on our skills from generation to generation. Imagine what your children or grandchildren can come up with after learning great craft techniques from you and your maker friends! We've got you covered with Teach me to Crochetand Teach me to KnitThese books teach the foundations of two of our most popular crafts, and from there, that special someone you have in mind to teach can pick up on some of your styles!

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    If you have an itch to teach your skill or craft, don't forget about the Craft Yarn Council's Certified Instructor Program. The best way to show your love of yarn is to share your love of yarn, so sign up today!

    If you're interested in signing up to be a certified instructor, Click Here.

     

    Use up your scrap Yarn and make something new to love!

    If you have a scrap pile that needs to be taken care of in your maker space, then check out these patterns from Scrappy Afghans and Projects From Your Scrap Bag that use up those extra scraps that you can't seem to part with. Show your love of yarn by giving it a clean home!

    Scrappy Afghans Scrappy Afghans
    Scrappy Afghans More Projects From Your Scrap Bag

     

    Get Crafty With Yarn

    You don't have to knit or crochet to use up that favorite ball of yarn! Our book, Yarn Crafts is an exception to the typical yarn user, where you can get more creative with your projects and your yarns! Try making string art with just a few nails and wrapping methods, or give that frumpy vase some added flair to spice up your dining room table. The possibilities are endless!

    Rainbow Yarn Vases - Yarn Crafts Rainbow Yarn Vases - Yarn Crafts
    Ampersand String Art - Yarn Crafts Ampersand String Art - Yarn Crafts

    There are many other ways to celebrate I Love Yarn Day, but we're glad that we could give you just a few! If you have thought of something fun that we haven't thought of, comment below! We'd love to hear it. Be sure to share your projects that you have created for I Love Yarn Day on our Facebook , Twitter, and Instagram pages. We love to see what you guys are working on.

    Happy I Love Yarn Day!

    -Leisure Arts Team

  • Teaching Knit and Crochet with the Certified Instructors Program!

    Teaching! We've all thought about it at some point in our lives. We all have imagined leading a group and teaching the best of the best to some awesome people. Now, us crafters have that resource! The Craft Yarn Council has this AMAZING program that lets you share your skills with aspiring Crochet and Knit enthusiasts. This opportunity keeps crafting alive for future generations, and gives you the opportunity to give back to you community though your trade. Check out all the details below!

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    Do you love to teach others, and have strong basic knit or crochet skills? The kids are going back to school, so why don’t you? Join the thousands of knitters and crocheters who’ve already gained the knowledge and confidence to teach others through the Craft Yarn Council’s Certified Instructors Program!

    Teaching Crafts

    The Certified Instructors Program equips people with the tools to share their passion for knit and crochet with others and to “stitch it forward”. The program offers many benefits to students, including increased confidence in their crochet or knitting skills and the ability to convey these skills to others. Students also gain exclusive access to the closed CIP Student and Graduate Facebook page, where they can collaborate with other CIP students and graduates.

    The program has been around since 1982. More than 15,000 students have completed the course and gone on to teach in retail stores, adult education programs, and to share their knowledge with friends, co-workers and family. Students work with a nationally recognized Master Teacher and complete teaching hours to prove their proficiency.

    Here are some fast facts about the program:

    ● It is offered via correspondence and occasionally as an on-site course

    ● The correspondence course is divided into Level I and Level II

    ● Students have six months to complete each level of the correspondence program

    ●There are 15 hours of class time held over a series of days at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York, and the curriculum covers both levels.

    Ready to start teaching? Click here to visit the Craft Yarn Council website for more information and to apply.

    ----------------

    Sounds pretty amazing, right? Be sure to check out this program, and share it with others who would love to share their favorite past times onto the next generation of rocking crafters.

    Happy Crafting!

    -Leisure Arts Team

  • Dog Crafts! Fuzzy Projects for Furry Friends

     

    Hey Craft Family! 

    “It doesn’t matter if you’re a cat or dog person, we all love our pets!”

    Except for this post.  

    Because dogs are going to be the star of the show today! 

    Admit it, we’ve all been caught spoiling our dogs with whatever we can think of. Extra food, treats, our usual side of the bed, you name it! So, why can’t we spoil them with crafts? Pet clothing has been growing significantly more popular throughout the years, and people can’t stop finding new outfits to style their furry best friend in. So, we’ve made a few suggestions for your next gift for Fido! Let’s get started. 

     

    Dog Royalty: Suave and Stylish Knits for the Park

    Give your dog that extra pep in his step with the right outfit for the day! Like these designs: 

    From Knits for Pets - # 75622

    Knits for Pets screen-shot-2018-06-25-at-9-21-19-am screen-shot-2018-06-25-at-9-21-33-am

    I know that it's summer, but this is the perfect time to start working on these patterns so they can be read by the fall. Plus come on, look at these dogs! They are owning it in their outfits.

     

    Accessorize 

    If your dog is anything like mine, then wearing an outfit is a constant uphill battle. Which is why when making crafts for your dog, you sometimes have to improvise. My dog won't wear a full coat, or any type of shirt without trying to eat it, so I make him small scarves, or cute collars instead! Other things you can make could be toys, or plush animals for them to play with! Here are a few examples of some accessories that you can make for your dog.

    Knits For Pets - # 75622 

    Dog Plush Toy

    A New Twist on Macrame - # 75597

    Dog Collar

    Learn To Crochet Toys - # 6188

    Dog Toy

    Sweet Pet Comforts - # 36075274

    Dog Accessories screen-shot-2018-06-25-at-10-21-12-am screen-shot-2018-06-25-at-10-21-21-am screen-shot-2018-06-25-at-10-21-29-am

    Baby toys might seem like a stretch for dog gifts, but it's actually a great idea for puppies, who get easily amused and need a lot of attention when you first get them. The plush toys, like the one mentioned above, are just as important to puppy, and most of the time they'll become attached to it!

     

    Dogs are companion creatures, which means that wherever you go, they go. You're the first thing they think about in the morning when they wake up, and the last thing they think about when they cuddle up right next to you and go to sleep. Why shouldn't we spoil them every chance we get? If you try out these patterns, it will be an extra special gift to them since it was made from your own hands.

     

    Happy crafting, and good luck!

     

    -Leisure Arts Team

     

  • Stitching With A Conscience: Crafting and Wellness

     

    Hey craft family! 

    We know that last month was ‘Stitch Away Stress’ month, but let’s face it, that’s every month for us hardworking civilians. In a perfect world, life’s biggest pressures would be swept away with the power of a single cross stitch.

    In a Perfect world.  

    The cold hard truth of this life is that some days are going to be harder than others, and that can make us feel overwhelmed. But never fear, crafting is here! We artists have found ways to cope with our stress though many mediums, be it painting, writing, or, our personal favorite, stitching! Crocheting, knitting, sewing and quilting; you name it, and we’ve all tried it at some point. 

    blog-content-5-25

    The act of creating something, anything, gives you a sense of comfort and control, even when you’re at your most uncomfortable and unkempt. We get to choose what to make, how to make it, and what to do with our creation afterwards. I know when I work on my projects, I feel a sense of peace wash over me, and I can go into a nice meditative state. In the New York Times article, “The Health Benefits of Knitting”, Jane Brody quotes that the repetitive action of needlework can induce a "relaxed state" in crafters, very similar to the meditative state one would reach if they were doing yoga. When we get like this, our heart rates lower, our blood pressures drop, and we can almost feel the cortisol (stress) hormones leaving our bodies. 

    blog-content-5-25_2

    With stitching, you can set up your own meditation studio anywhere you go. You could be on the train to the beach with a cup of hot tea beside you; or at home, lounging on the couch, kicking back to the classics while your kids do the dishes and leave you in peace (in a perfect world, am I right?). The point is that the repetitive looping action, working towards a greater goal, with nothing else to worry about but the next stitch in the set, will bring you more peace than any yoga instructor with their 'vegan milkshakes' ever could. 

    screen-shot-2018-05-11-at-8-48-35-am

    If you’re worried about not being artistic enough to reach this bliss, don’t worry! Even if you think you can’t do something well, just the simple act of doing it relieves your stress. In a Huffington Post article, Priscilla Frank writes about a recent discovery after a test was conducted on several participants during an art making session. Forty-five minutes of creative activity significantly lowered cortisol levels in the body, regardless of artistic talent. So, don’t let self-doubt get it in your way of relaxation.

    If you’re looking to find that new project, these books have some of the best projects to work on if you just want to mindlessly create and meditate: 

    screen-shot-2018-05-11-at-8-48-21-am

     

    Fidget to Focus:

     

    screen-shot-2018-05-25-at-9-05-26-am

     

    Quick Thread Projects:

     

    screen-shot-2018-05-09-at-9-10-41-am

    Make in A Weekend Comfy Knit Throws:

     

    screen-shot-2018-05-25-at-11-49-22-am

    50 Cross Stitch Quickies - Animals and Friends:

     

    screen-shot-2018-05-22-at-12-53-15-pm

    Make a Crochet Garden

     

    To learn more about the wellness benefits of stitching, check out these articles: 

    The Truth About Knitting and Crochet…

     

    Study Says Making Art Reduces Stress, Even If You Suck At It

     

    The Health Benefits of Knitting

     

    Stay creative, crafters! 

    -Leisure Arts Team

  • Fiber Art: Yarn Bombing, a Yarn Doll and Yarn Crafts

    I have been intrigued by yarn bombing for years but put my interest on hold after seeing only knit and crochet pieces used in the "bombing".  Since I had only started to learn how to knit and crochet, I couldn't imagine trying to create something quickly enough to use as self-expression in the greater outdoors. But as Craftsy has noted, the common denominator for this decorative self-expression is yarn. As a result, the artistic talents of many individuals may be creations that include multiple needle craft and fiber art categories.

    Some additional background information suggests that yarn bombing alters the visual landscape usually found in an urban setting. It is taking the craft of knitting and crocheting from the stereotyped image of grandma to the next level of free-form textile artistry that is a non-destructive way of voicing your opinion.

    Earlier this year, the inside of Leisure Arts started showing signs of fiber artistry appearing in open spaces. I gasped in an, "A-Ha!" moment; these office embellishments were versions of indoor yarn bombing. On the first floor, Tina's coat rack was covered with granny squares.

    A coat rack gets a yarn bombing makeover -- love the pom-pom hairdo and craft supply goo-goo eyes! A coat rack gets a yarn bombing makeover -- love the pom-pom hairdo and craft supply goo-goo eyes!

    The lobby furniture had its transformation, too.

    Add a lampshade tassel, tabletop cover and ripple wrap to an end table for a yarn makeover. Add a lampshade tassel, tabletop cover and ripple wrap to an end table for a yarn makeover.
    Complimentary colors are used for the longer table runner. Complimentary colors are used for the longer table runner.

    The use of textiles in artwork and home decor is not limited to crochet, knit, plastic canvas or other traditional skill categories and uses of yarn. Fiber art is alive and growing; it can be done by many as a way to decorate their homes with handmade artwork. Look at one of the pieces done by Jen, a Leisure Arts' friend. This owl dreamcatcher is her interpretation of one of the projects found in Leisure Arts' item 6758 - Yarn Crafts.

    A trio of dreamcatchers connected together with added feathers to form the shape of an owl. A fabulous interpretation of a project found in Leisure Arts' item 6758 - Yarn Crafts. A trio of dreamcatchers connected together with added feathers to form the shape of an owl. A fabulous interpretation of a project found in Leisure Arts' item 6758 - Yarn Crafts.

    I thought a yarn doll needed to be sitting on the lobby's settee; Tina and I started brainstorming! A shopping bag of partial skeins of yarn was collected as Tina thought what to use as the framework to hold the yarn as it was wrapped. The solution: an inverted sofa table.

    A life-sized yarn doll is going to be part of the Leisure Arts' yarn bombing decor. In order to make a life-sized yarn doll, many partial skeins of yarn would be wound around the legs of an inverted table. A life-sized yarn doll is going to be part of the Leisure Arts' yarn bombing decor. In order to make a life-sized yarn doll, many partial skeins of yarn would be wound around the legs of an inverted table.

    As the wrapping continues, watch as the mound of yarn skeins on the couch diminishes as the wound yarn around the sofa table legs increases.

    Around and around; look at all of the yarn gathered for a life-sized yarn doll! The table legs are acting as a frame to hold the yarn before gathering and tying off by sections. Around and around; look at all of the yarn gathered for a life-sized yarn doll! The table legs are acting as a frame to hold the yarn before gathering and tying off by sections.
    Many colors, textures and weights of yarn are wound around the legs of an inverted table in preparation for the life-sized yarn doll. Many colors, textures and weights of yarn are wound around the legs of an inverted table in preparation for the life-sized yarn doll.

    The next step in creating the yarn doll is to separate its form into sections. Since this yarn doll is going to be life-sized, the yarn needs some extra support. To add extra stability to the form's framework, Tina added cut pieces of a pool noodle into the yarn sections. The cut sizes of the pool noodle pieces are based on the proportions of your own life-sized yarn doll creation.

    Deciding the best way to shape this size doll! A pool noodle is cut into sections; one piece is bent in half to use for the head. The body and legs are gathered and tied in sections. Deciding the best way to shape this size doll! A pool noodle is cut into sections; one piece is bent in half to use for the head. The body and legs are gathered and tied in sections.

    The yarn doll sections are tied with a stronger material than yarn; Tina used jute instead. Tina did not care for the look of the legs so she untied them, but the head, arms and body remained. The yarn doll sits comfortably in a recliner; it really is life-sized!

    Reviewing the doll and deciding on the next step. Look at this yarn doll's dimensions as it sits in a recliner! Reviewing the doll and deciding on the next step. Look at this yarn doll's dimensions as it sits in a recliner!

    Hands are created by cutting the looped yarn at the ends of each arm. The legs have been untied, and the yarn doll will appear to be "dressed" and wearing a skirt. The yarn strands of the untied legs are separated and cut at the bottom to give the free-flowing look of fabric.

    The legs of the yarn doll are going to be "hidden" as if hidden underneath a skirt. The yarn loops at the bottom of the skirt and hands are cut. The legs of the yarn doll are going to be "hidden" as if hidden underneath a skirt. The yarn loops at the bottom of the skirt and hands are cut.

    It's time to prepare the head for some extra embellishment. The yarn doll is now a female who is wearing a skirt. She needs some kind of head covering and maybe some hair. Look what was discovered; how to make your own yarn curls for doll hair!

    The yarn doll is female and she can't have the one tied-off section at the top of her head be visible. She at least needs hair and maybe a kerchief. First, start by making curls. The yarn doll is female and she can't have the one tied-off section at the top of her head be visible. She at least needs hair and maybe a kerchief. First, start by making curls.

    As I am making and baking yarn curls, I started to crochet a granny kerchief. It seemed like it took me hours to complete this easy pattern, but I knew I was anxious to see the finished piece with curly hair and a kerchief. Tina made the yarn doll a bodice or vest; Tina created her own pattern and just estimated the garment's dimensions by holding it against the body of the doll as she progressed. As my kerchief neared completion, the yarn doll was taking on a personality and needed a name; LeiAnn Skane was born.

    The yarn doll now has curly hair and a crocheted kerchief. A crocheted bodice or vest was made, too. Her name is LeiAnn Skane. The yarn doll now has curly hair and a crocheted kerchief. A crocheted bodice or vest was made, too. Her name is LeiAnn Skane.

    At about the time LeiAnn was completed, I joked with Tina that LeiAnn needed a friend  -- or at least a dog to be her buddy. I was thinking of a dog similar in construction to this yarn doll. But Tina remembered as a young girl she would make yarn dogs with the use of a hanger as the wire frame. What a fun addition and fabulous creation was this yarn dog!

    A yarn dog is made using a wire hanger as its framework. Start with the same steps for making pom-poms. A yarn dog is made using a wire hanger as its framework. Start with the same steps for making pom-poms.
    After the winding and tying of each pom-pom is done, tie each onto the frame; the loops of each are not cut. The future dog has been named, Pom-Pom! After the winding and tying of each pom-pom is done, tie each onto the frame; the loops of each are not cut. The future dog has been named, Pom-Pom!

    Of course LeiAnn's dog would need a name, too. Look at the final creation. LeiAnn sits casually with her pooch. Can you guess what the dog's name is before reading any further...

    The yarn doll, LeiAnn, sits with her yarn dog, Pom-Pom. They are the perfect yarn bomb additions to the lobby at Leisure Arts! The yarn doll, LeiAnn, sits with her yarn dog, Pom-Pom. They are the perfect yarn bomb additions to the lobby at Leisure Arts!
    LeiAnn and Pom-Pom wear their IDs! LeiAnn and Pom-Pom wear their IDs!

    LeiAnn and Pom-Pom will greet you in the lobby; they proudly wear identification as members of the Leisure Arts' family. We love the added yarn bombing embellishments to our office decor!

    Martha

     

     

  • The All-New Ultimate Oval Loom Knitting Set

    Our Innovative Ultimate Oval Loom Knitting Set  breaks the mold of a traditional knitting loom. At first glance, you might ask a simple question:

    Why Oval?

    Oval Loom Kit Large Oval Loom, Small Oval Loom & Stitching Tool

    Easy Handling

    If you've ever held a traditional straight loom, you know spacing in the center of the loom can be tight.  The all-new oval shape is easy to hold and use, since it is just deep enough to allow plenty of room in the center to work.

    Oval vs. Straight and Round Looms

    Traditional Loom Assortment of Round and Straight Looms

    When compared to the straight loom, the oval loom is easier to use due to the room in the center to work.

    When comparing an oval loom and a round loom with the same number of pegs, it's easier to hold the oval loom.

    Yarn

    The peg spacing is ½” making it a small gauge loom perfect for lighter weight yarns.   A single strand of #3 light weight yarn and #4 medium weight yarns can be used.

    Ultimate Oval Loom Kit

    Ultimate Oval Loom Knitting Set Ultimate Loom Knitting Set Packaging

    Inside the Ultimate Oval Loom Knitting Set  you'll find the following:

    • Small Loom ~ 11 3/4" x 5 1/2" with 54 Pegs
    • Large Loom ~ 15 1/2" x 9 3/8" with 70 Pegs
    • Stitching Tool
    • 48-page Beginner's Guide to Oval Loom Knitting with 7 Projects
    54 Peg Loom, 70 Peg Loom & Stitching Tool from Oval Loom 54 Peg Loom, 70 Peg Loom & Stitching Tool
    Beginner's Guide Oval Loom Knitting Beginner's Guide to Oval Loom Knitting

    Projects

    This is ideal loom for lighter weight projects including baby blankets, mitts, hats, scarves, cowls, bags, afghans, and more.   The 48-page Beginner's Guide has clear photos and friendly step-by-step instructions.  Here are the projects you can make with the guide included with the Ultimate Oval Loom Knitting Set: Basic Beanie, Striped Beanie, Fingerless Mitts, Family Tube Socks, Twisted Garter Hat, Twisted Garter Scarf, and Lace Cowl.

    Oval Loom Basic Beanie Basic Beanie
    Oval Loom Striped Beanie Striped Beanie
    Fingerless Mitts made with the Oval Loom Fingerless Mitts
    Family Tube Socks made with the Oval Loom Family Tube Socks
    Twisted Garter Hat made with the Oval Loom Twisted Garter Hat
    Oval Loom Scarf Twisted Garter Scarf
    Oval Loom Lace Cowl Lace Cowl

    Each of the seven projects in the Beginner's Guide to Oval Loom Knitting has easy, step-by-step photo directions.

    Who Can Use this Loom?

    Loom Knitting is popular for a reason.  A loom lessens the need for repetitive movements making it a great alternative for someone with arthritis, carpel tunnel, fibromyalgia, or any other condition that might result in hand or wrist pain.  Loom knitting is also a great choice for beginners, including kids!  This set is a great way to introduce kids to knitting; we recommend the Leisure Arts Ultimate Oval Loom Knitting Set  for ages 8 and up.

    The oval loom steps up the benefits to the next level with the oval shape allowing for even easier handling and manipulation.  The extra room in the center of the loom makes loom knitting an even easier task.

    Get Started

    Oval Loom Back Cover Leisure Arts

    Now is the time to learn the basics of loom knitting while creating fabulous fashions and other small-gauge projects! In the Ultimate Oval Loom Knitting Set , you’ll receive looms in two sizes (with 54 and 70 pegs), a stitching tool, and the Beginner's Guide to Oval Loom Knitting.  Just add yarn and you'll be loom knitting beautiful creations before you know it!

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