Quilt It with Love cover 50% off

Five years ago, I was sitting by my premature baby’s isolette in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), scared and anxious. Hospitals can be lonely places—unfamiliar surroundings, confusing medical jargon, and uncomfortable beds can quickly make you wish for the comfort of your home. But one day, soon after we arrived, I walked into the NICU to find a bright, colorful quilt covering my daughter’s incubator. Donated by a volunteer with Project Linus, the quilt was stitched with cute little animals and hearts and made the room feel a little more like home.

Project Linus is an amazing organization that provides handmade quilts and blankets to children who are sick, traumatized, or otherwise in need. And after my experience with them, you can imagine how thrilled I’ve been to be able to work with Carol Babbit and Mary Balagna, President and Vice President of Project Linus and authors of Quilt it with Love: The Project Linus Story.

Quilt it with Love is filled with beautiful and creative quilts—interactive quilts that double as game boards, quilts that have special pockets that hold tissues or toys, and quilts perfect for group crafting projects. Interspersed throughout the projects are stories of people like me who have been touched and strengthened by the work of Project Linus.

coupon codeAnd now, exclusively at www.bn.com, you can purchase your own copy of Quilt it with Love for 50% off, now through November 15th! Simply enter coupon code Y9V9D7A to receive your discount. 100% of royalties go directly to Project Linus, so you’ll be making a difference in the lives of children simply by purchasing the book. You can also learn how to make a difference in your own community through Project Linus by visiting www.projectlinus.org.

quilt heartsMy daughter left the hospital after a month, and today she’s a thriving, active five year old who is learning to read! Although I’ll never meet him or her in person, I’m so grateful to the Project Linus volunteer who made our stay in the NICU a little more pleasant and hopeful, simply by making a quilt.

from Shannon Quinn-Tucker, guest Needlearts blogger

Cat and Milk Brooch by Kathy Sheldon in Shrink! Shrank! Shrunk!

Cat and Milk Brooch by Kathy Sheldon in Shrink! Shrank! Shrunk!

What’s more delightful than working — or should I say playing? — with shrink plastic, the iconic crafty material so popular in the ’70s and ’80s that’s enjoying a major resurgence today? Well, cotton candy. Elmo. Seahorses. Mary Tyler Moore.

But I digress. Kathy Sheldon’s Shrink! Shrank! Shrunk!, our brand new shrink-plastic jewelry book (and just how often do I get to say that?), is receiving a wildly enthusiastic early reception, and for good reason: the detailed yet playful instruction and, especially, the 30 great projects from 17 designers make for outstanding creative fun for you by yourself … or to share with your kids!

We previously posted the Origami Plane Earrings project by Tonia Mo from the book on this blog and to extraordinarily positive response: the post has received more than 6,000 StumbleUpon “stumbles.” And here we’re posting three more great project-preview PDFs from Shrink! Shrank! Shrunk! for you to get a good sense of the book and the sometimes whimsical, always beautiful and magical projects it has in store for you:


Not-Your-Grandmother's Cameos by Tamara Berg in Shrink! Shrank! Shrunk!


Paper Plane Ride Necklace by Stasia Burrington in Shrink! Shrank! Shrunk!


You can buy Shrink! Shrank! Shrunk! at your local craft store or on Amazon or BN.com. Have a blast! And please don’t forget to “Like” Lark Jewelry & Beading on Facebook to be informed about many free projects, see pics of fabulous jewelry and beading work being done today, and be alerted to great giveaways of books and sometimes even jewelry. Thank you very much for being a part of our community!


Apple Bread Pudding Recipe

October 11, 2012, 09:00 am  Posted by Lark

Now is prime apple harvesting season here in North Carolina and the largest apple-producing county in the state is Henderson County, which is just a stone’s throw away from the Lark Crafts office. The most widely grown apples in NC are Red Delicious, Golden Delicious, Rome Beauty, and Galas. Of those, Rome Beauty and Golden Delicious are both excellent apple varieties to cook with, as are Fuji, Empire, Stayman, Granny Smith, and Jonagold to name a few others.

Some dishes, because they’re so simple, so delicious, and so satisfying, have caught the fancy of generations—their popularity never fades. Bread pudding is one of those dishes. And so in my salute to apple season, I give you the recipe for Apple Bread Pudding. As if that’s not yummy enough, take it up a notch with a good quality vanilla bean ice cream dusted with cinnamon.



Recipe after the jump

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[This article was written by Chris Bryant last fall. We love it so much that we wanted to share it again this fall, timed perfectly for the chill autumn nights that are now visiting many of us in the northern hemisphere. Enjoy!]

Last fall Dorie Greenspan’s Stuffed Pumpkin With Everything Good recipe was drifting through the food world like a perfect fall leaf that suddenly draws everyone’s attention. Since then it has been embraced as a celebration of fall, of hearth & home, and cozy winter fare. Seasonal food celebrators and foodies took note and it became viral. I tracked it floating through the food universe from my favorite radio food shows to magazines to blog posts to radio interviews.

around my french table book cover

Dorie Greenspan is a cookbook author who lives in New York City, Connecticut, and Paris. I know, a wretched existence. Her 2010 cookbook, Around My French Table, came out last fall and the now famous stuffed pumpkin was its showcase recipe (although Greenspan and her fans were talking about it as far back as 2006).

There’s a really interesting story about a French family and pumpkins that inspired Greenspan to adopt and adapt the recipe. You should hear her tell the story and explain the recipe, which is actually not so much a recipe as “an art project” as Greenspan describes it. Here are two renditions, one is an NPR All Things Considered interview from host Michele Norris’s kitchen, another from KCRW’s Good Food with Evan Kleiman, my favorite radio food show and podcast. They are each about 6-7 minutes. If you don’t have time for both, catch the NPR interview.

Have you listened? If so you know the broad concept for how to make and bake a stuffed pumpkin. Doesn’t it sound simple? And interesting? I was immediately compelled to try and it will forever be in my repertoire of cold weather favorites.

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Celebrating American Craft Week: 50% Off Sale at BN.com

October 05, 2012, 17:10 pm  Posted by Lark

We’re very excited to join the celebration of the 3rd Annual American Craft Week! From October 5th through October 14th, people across the US will be celebrating those who champion all things handmade: artists, artisans, studios, galleries, arts alliances, art and craft guilds, national art associations, museums, fairs, festivals, creative co-ops, schools, retreat centers, craft councils, and more.

From coast to coast, cities across the United States will be hosting events, championing artists, and shining a light on those who create by hand here in America. In the words of American Craft Week, “Our goal is to publicize, explain, and promote American Craft and all it contributes to our national aesthetic and economy…. American Craft enriches our homes, wardrobes, offices, and public spaces. It contributes to our nation’s economy, our balance of trade, and the fabric of our national history. It is original, beautiful, and enduring, so let’s tell the world!”

Lark Crafts is delighted to celebrate American Craft Week by sharing a 50% Off Sale on hundreds of craft books through BarnesandNoble.com. Visit the American Craft Week Sale Page, click to See All Sale Titles, and use this coupon code at check-out to receive half off select craft book purchases: C4V3M3R

American Craft Week 50% off sale at BN.com

We understand the power of creative inspiration and education, and we wholeheartedly value the tenets supporting American Craft Week. Artists everywhere enrich our lives daily with their dedication to creativity, innovation, and tradition—thank you to the organizers and many participants in this year’s American Craft Week for all you do to recognize the importance of craft!

Want to learn more about American Craft Week?

-Participants and Events in the US (listed by state)

-How to Get Involved

-Current News about American Craft Week

-Sponsor Information


Crochet Boutique coverWith Shannon Quinn-Tucker, guest Needlearts blogger

Recently released, Crochet Boutique is filled with fun, trendy wearables and accessories that will take you through this fall and beyond! Here, author Rachael Oglesby shares her thoughts on modern crochet. Don’t forget to download a FREE PDF of Rachael’s Granny Square Cushion at the end of the interview.

Who would you say has been most influential in your life when it comes to crafting, and why? That would certainly be my mom. She’s the one who taught me to crochet to begin with! And it was my grandmother who taught her. I appreciate that I have this link to the women in my family that has made its way down to me.

How would you describe your aesthetic? What inspires you in creating your designs? I would describe my aesthetic as classic with a twist. I love simple, basic items you can wear repeatedly yet are updated in a way that gives them just a little something extra to make them special. It can be something as simple as a color that pops or a beautiful unique yarn.

Rachael OglesbyWhat was your favorite part of authoring Crochet Boutique? My favorite part was selecting the projects for the book and also working with my photographer and friend, Emily Ogden, to bring it all to life. I knew when I was first approached for the book that I wanted Emily on board, and I was ecstatic when she agreed. I also enjoyed fleshing out the initial direction for the book—thinking of my audience and deciding what it was exactly I wanted to accomplish and present.

Crochet Boutique contains a variety of items, some of which people might find more typical of crochet projects (scarves and hats) and some they might find unusual (laptop sleeve). What was your favorite project in this book? The rainbow throw holds a special place in my heart since it’s inspired by a clouds and rainbow motif afghan my mother made in the early 80s. Her blanket is one of my earliest memories of crochet and I remember really loving that piece when she finished it. It’s one of the first pieces that left me wishing I could crochet my own, so my rainbow throw pattern is an homage to hers.

Who are some crochet artists whom you admire, and what is it about each that you find inspirational/exceptional? I am more inspired by the everyday at home crafter than I am by any of the big name artists I can think of. The DIY movement that has rapidly gained strength over the past few years has been empowering and therapeutic for many, myself included, and I believe the online community and the sharing of ideas has fostered that. It’s amazing to be able to share and talk about your craft with so many other crafters at any given moment, and I’ve made some wonderful friends over the past few years through such interactions.

granny square cushionGet inspired to create by downloading a free PDF of Rachael’s Granny Square Cushion! And don’t forget to check out Rachael’s Etsy shop at http://www.etsy.com/shop/softspoken or her blog, http://softspoken.blogspot.com/, for even more of her fabulous style!



Jill Wiseman’s Beautiful Beaded Ropes is, as I’m writing this blog post, the No. 1 book in Jewelry and in Beading on Amazon.com. Which is pretty awesome, as well as deserved: Jill, it’s a fantastic book.

This earlier post (click here to go there), featuring Jill’s Flirtation Bracelet and Bohemian Earrings as downloadable projects, has so far generated more than 400 Facebook “Likes” and nearly 3,000 StumbleUpon, um, “Stumbles.” (You may think I’m just making that term up, but trust me: I’m an editor.) Which also is awesome, and demands a follow-up: hence this post.

I’m pleased to share with you two more downloadable PDFs from Jill Wiseman’s Beautiful Beaded Ropes. I hope you love them, and that they give you a nice preview of Jill’s beautiful, inspirational, and creative work that’s so well captured in the projects in her new book. Download these PDFs right now:

French Quarter Lariat from Jill Wiseman's Beautiful Beaded Ropes



Ray of Light Bangle from Jill Wiseman's Beautiful Beaded Ropes


Ray of Light Bangle variation from Jill Wiseman's Beautiful Beaded Ropes

Jill Wiseman

Ask for the book at your local bead store or bookstore, or order it online on Amazon or BN.com. Please “Like” the Lark Jewelry & Beading page on Facebook right now to be alerted to more free projects and giveaways and to see digital pics of many fabulous jewelry and beading creations. And be sure to visit Jill Wiseman’s website and blog to learn more about her.

Also, don’t miss our October giveaway of a complete set of signed books in the Beadweaving Master Class series: Click here to learn how to enter. It’s easy! (Honest — after all, I’m an editor. Honesty is in the job description.)



GIVEAWAY: Entire PUSH Gallery Series

October 05, 2012, 10:51 am  Posted by Lark

The work gathered in our exciting PUSH gallery series is some of the most interesting and innovative work done in contemporary craft today. With an exceptionally beautiful hardcover package and design, the series is a visual feast that will pique curiosity and spark inspiration for anyone interested in craft, intriguing personalities, and innovative ideas. The artists represented are considered mavericks in their fields, testing the limits in regards to both technique and subject matter while forging an even finer line between craft and art. Each book includes beautiful, full-color gallery images and short bios as well as Q&A style questions between the curator and each artist.

We’re celebrating the publication of the latest two books in the series PUSH Jewelry and PUSH Print by offering up a chance to win the entire four-book collection, which also includes PUSH Paper and PUSH Stitchery. Exciting!

How can you enter for a chance to win? Leave a comment on this blog post by 9 p.m. EST on Thursday, October 11. Any comment will do, but why don’t you tell us which of these four books you are most excited to see. One winner will be selected at random and announced on Friday, October 12. Click here for the official rules. Good luck! This giveaway is now closed. Congratulations to Clara, our winner!


My name is Carol Sulcoski and I’m the author of Sock Yarn Studio. I’ll be posting from time to time this month on the Lark Crafts blog.

Tuesday was a very special day for me: it marked the publication date of my new book, Sock Yarn Studio. And that “official” publication date is the perfect time to kick off the “Official Sock Yarn Studio Blog Tour!” We’ve got some fun and interesting stops lined up for you, with giveaways, interviews, book reviews, and insight from some of the contributing designers about the design process. Starting tomorrow, and running through the beginning of November, here’s where you’ll find all the Sock-Yarny goodness:

October 5: Kristin Ohmdahl

October  10: Wendy Johnson

October 14: Joe Wilcox

October 15: Cristi Brockway

October 16: Marlaina Bird

October 18: Tanis Gray

October 22: Hunter Hammersen

October 24: Barb Brown

October 26: Erika Flory

November 1: Elizabeth Morrison

November 4: Jody (Pirrello) Richards

November 7: Ruth Garcia-Alcantud

November 9: Shannon Okey

But that’s not all. Today, we’re also giving away a free project download! As you probably know, not every project can make it into a project-packed book–but some of what ends up on the cutting room floor is too good not to share. So, to get your fall knitting started, you can download the instructions for making the Cintaya Long Cowl you see above: Cintaya Long Cowl PDF. There’s also instructions for a provisional cast-on included!

Ok, that’s all for now. Happy knitting and see you on tour!


UPDATE: Congratulations to Twyla Harbick of Springfield, Oregon, the randomly selected winner of this giveaway. Our sincere appreciation to everyone who participated. Thank you for being a part of our community. If you like these books or have feedback about them, please let us know!


We’re celebrating the release of the newest book in the Beadweaving Master Class series: the spectacular Jill Wiseman’s Beautiful Beaded Ropes, a September 2012 release and already a No. 1 bestseller among beading books.

Here’s how we celebrate around here: We give things away. So it makes sense to me to give away a COMPLETE SET of the Beadweaving Master Class books. But how can I make it special for people who already have some or all the books? Hmm. Well, how about this: All the books are signed by their respective authors.

The Beadweaving Master Class books being given away are:
Diane Fitzgerald’s Shaped Beadwork (signed by Diane)
Marcia DeCoster’s Beaded Opulence (signed by Marcia)
Laura McCabe’s Embellished Beadweaving (signed by Laura)
Sherry Serafini’s Sensational Bead Embroidery (signed by Sherry)
Maggie Meister’s Classical Elegance (signed by Maggie)
Rachel Nelson-Smith’s Bead Riffs (signed by Rachel)
Japanese Beadwork with Sonoko Nozue (signed by Sonoko)
Sabine Lippert’s Beaded Fantasies (signed by Sabine)
Jill Wiseman’s Beautiful Beaded Ropes (signed by, you guessed it, Jill)

And, just so the lucky winner doesn’t feel like she or he is missing out on anything, I’m throwing in copies (unsigned) of three wonderful gallery books, filled with photographs of gorgeous beadwork:
Showcase 500 Beaded Jewelry
Masters: Beadweaving
500 Beaded Objects

That’s a dozen books! As I mentioned, we realize that if you’re interested in this giveaway you might already have some of these creative-juice-stirring books in your home or studio. No worries: Enter anyway for fabulous holiday gift-giving opportunities. Or you can donate the books to your local bead society or library.

Also, people tell me sometimes they get frustrated: they enter a giveaway, forget to check who the winner is so the giveaway never really “closes” for them, and then later realize they’d forgotten to buy a book they really wanted. Easy solution: Click through and wishlist the books you’re interested in right now. If you don’t happen to win, you’re giving yourself a reminder. And if you do happen to win, you’re all set already!

How can you enter for a chance to win the set of 12 books? Leave a comment on this blog post by 9 p.m. EDT on Wednesday, October 17. Any comment counts as an entry, but I encourage you to write about what you see as the most exciting trend in beading or jewelry these days. That will be fun!

One winner will be selected at random and announced on October 24. Please “Like” the Lark Jewelry & Beading page on Facebook to be alerted to free projects and giveaways and to see digital pics of many fabulous jewelry and beading creations. You can click here for the official rules. And good luck!

500 Beaded Objects