New Patterns

Free Crochet Pattern: Draft Dodger


My latest custom order was so fun and simple, I can’t resist sharing the tiny 10-line pattern with you all. Drunk past midnight at the Beach Boardwalk like a member of the Lost Boys after a reunion slash wedding, I picked my phone up out of the sand for like the fourth time and started reading emails. “Woah guys, what the hell is this? Someone just messaged me on Etsy asking for a draft extruder! What the hell is that? *kapow!* Oooooh, look over there, someone’s launching some leftover fireworks. Let’s go in the ocean right now. It’s not even cold! Hiccup. Geez, I seriously love you guys…”

A sunrise and several liters of water later, I remembered something about a confusing custom order inquiry. How wonderful is the internet to connect us with people all over the world, and muddle through translations to eventually communicate. The inquiry referred to a German post about a Türzugluftstopper, that is, a draft dodger. Mystery solved! (more…)

New Products

Super Stylish Crochet Lace iPad & MacBook Sleeves


Recycled bottles turned into handmade functional fashion

Are you tired of choosing between functionality and fashion? Do you wish your iPad and MacBook matched your crochet TOMS? Never fear, Knits for Life is here. An eco-friendly, hand-crocheted iPad or MacBook sleeve is a smart investment that will cuddle your device ’til it’s obsolete. (more…)

New Patterns, New Products

New Ear Warmers, Knitting Patterns, a Sale and a Giveway!


Back in the fall I declared this winter the season for wearing cuter headbands. Banish the big flowers made by grandma! Be gone, sorority-esque cliches! Now, with much trumpeting and fanfare, I pull back the red curtain and unveil to you two new lines of cute chunky knit headbands. Plus, get your scroll on: 20% off all new headbands and enter to win one for Christmas!

Chunky Cable Knit Ear Warmer Headbands

Winter cannot force us to ditch the summer braid! Braids are toute la rage all year round, now that you can wear them on a squishy, chunky ear warmer. Plus, they’re made with a blend of warm wool and easy-care acrylic so you can even throw them in your laundry! $35 at

Convertible Turban Headband and Cowl

Step off the curb like a silver screen starlet with an über-chic turban look. Already flying off the shelves, I’m gifting this perfectly cozy, stretchy accessory all Christmas and Hanukkah long. $35 at

Some one-of-a-kind pieces came out of the design process too. Here are a few of my favorites. Find more in the shop under the Eco Accessories tab.

XOXO Hugs and Kisses Ear Warmer Headband
XOXO Hugs and Kisses Ear Warmer Headband. $29
Silver and Cocoa Powder Brown Cable Knit Ear Warmer Headband
Sparkly Silver and Cocoa Powder Brown Cable Knit Ear Warmer Headband. $29

Knit your own

OK, smarty pants, so you know how to knit, huh? Great, you can make these for all your friends!

The knitting pattern for the braided cable knit ear warmer is free at Note that if you use super bulky yarn like I did, you only need 8 repeats of the pattern.

The knitting pattern for the convertible turban headband and cowl is $3 on Ravelry or at

Coupons and giveaway

From now until Christmas, save 20% on my new ear warmer headbands in the Etsy shop with code XMAS2012. I ship items the same or next day in cute, hand-stamped gift wrap with no price on it so you can gift it directly in the mailing package. I also include a free vetiver-scented buckwheat sachet your recipient can pop in the microwave and use as a pocket hand warmer. They’ll be warm cuddly from head to toe!
The coupon goes “poof!” on Christmas eve and on Christmas morning I’ll announce the winner of a free ear warmer!  You get one headband from the cable knit line or the turban line in your favorite color shipped to your door for free. To enter:

1. Tweet “Save 20% on these über-chic hand knit ear warmers from now until Xmas:”

2. Share Knits for Life’s Facebook announcement on your feed. You must go to Knits for Life’s page and click “share” on the story already posted there. Sharing a link to this blog post on your page doesn’t count. My page:

3. Leave a comment below letting me know you’re in!

Don’t forget to order by December 17 in time to ship for Christmas.

Happy happy winter!



New Products

What’s hot: chair socks


What’s selling: custom table socks

Do you peek at Etsy shops’ sales more often than their stock? Guilty! Who wants to see the leftovers? Not me!

My custom table socks in recycled yarn are hot! This time, before they flew out the door and in the mail, I snapped some photos. Why has the furniture sock trend popped up on Etsy and Pinterest? Scroll past the pics, where I tell you.

Custom Table Socks Recycled Yarn by Knits for Life
4-Pack of custom eco table socks by Knits for Life, $25.
    4-Pack of Custom Table Socks, in 100% New Recycled Yarn, by Knits for Life, $25.
Crocheted with European 100% new recycled yarn, by Berroco Yarns.
    4-Pack of Custom Table Socks, in 100% New Recycled Yarn, by Knits for Life, $25.
Ready to go with a coupon-loaded Moo card in a recycled, hand-stamped envelope.
Eco Friendly Crochet Decor by Knits for Life square
Retro tube sock table socks rock my world, and my fiber art studio.
Eco Friendly Home Decor by Knits for Life
Eco yarns are widely available now. Use them!

Why are they popular?

  • Closed-bottom socks protect bare floors. DD ordered a long, skinny pair for when she slides her new Table-Mate tray and laptop over to the couch. Now she wants socks in every color!
  • Yarn bombing isn’t just an outdoor phenomenon. Outdoor yarn bombs get shabby, but indoor bombs on clocks, chairs, and vases stay awesome. Plus you get to enjoy them all the time. My yarn bombed chairs feature in the upcoming issue of Graffiti Beach magazine.
  • Retro + surprising + eco = hot! From crochet to tube socks, what’s old is hot again. But please, let’s forgo granny squares and macrame. Reinvent played out trends, add some ethics, and you win.

Pin what’s selling

Remember, Pinterest rivals Facebook and Twitter in sites that get you traffic.

So, keep an eye to what’s selling when you pin. What’s selling = what people search for on Pinterest = your pins come up in searches. Embroidered Vans that epitomize needlepoint? Pin it! Personalized hand made needle felted necklaces for $19? Pin it! Custom table socks in recycled yarn? Pin it!

Don’t forget the description box. Search can give you a hand, but only if you hold out yours. Fill the description box with the terms that are selling.

Pin what’s selling, get followers, increase visibility of all your other pins. Got it? Good!

Now pin your favorite table sock image above and tell me what you’ve been selling lately in a comment. You can also follow my Pinterest board of furniture socks.


Lorna at Knits for Life


Knits for Life Yarn Bombs Unique SF June 30 & July 1

One great thing leads to another.

On Friday I checked in with STUDIO Gallery after finishing up the SF Etsy gallery show I was in (stay tuned: KFL and STUDIO will meet again) and – straight into my next triumph – met with the inspiring Sonja Rasula, founder and CEO of State of Unique about a fiber art installation for the first ever Unique SF design show.

I’m excited to share with you that my lil’ sis The Dapper Toad and I are doing a few gigantic fiber art pieces for the show. Check out the ideas I’m playing with below, and learn where to get your tickets to the coolest event of the summer!

“The largest curated, independent design show in the country is coming to San Francisco! You’ll get the rare chance to meet and shop directly from over 250 hand-selected designers and artists. The fun two-day shopping event makes it easy for you to buy local, discover great design and deals, join in community, and have a blast. Because the products at the show are proudly made right here in the USA, the money you spend goes right back into your local economy and community. With DJs, free drinks/photo booth portraits/DIY crafts, mini-massages in our lounge, and a great cafe with delicious food and sweet treats, it’s a great time for all – you’ll want to spend the weekend with us!”

Drawing on HOTTEA and others.

Join the event on Facebook here.

New Products, News

Yarn Bombed Furniture at STUDIO Gallery in SF


I am pleased to show you two more yarn bombed chairs in yellow and brown to go with the white one I made a few weeks ago. Made from reclaimed IKEA furniture and covered in crocheted recycled yarn, they exude my eco-friendly hand made style. All three are on display at STUDIO Gallery in San Francisco until May 27th with the San Francisco Etsy Street Team gallery show.

Yours truly,

Lorna at Knits for Life


Why Pinterest Beats Google Images


In 1906, strolling around the local livestock fair, a man comes upon the crowd at a weight-guessing attraction. An ox stands on a scale as people guess its weight on scraps of paper. I avoided feeling like the ox in this game every summer at our local amusement park at all costs – including the best hot pink stuffed animals. Being livestock, this ox was just chillin’ and eventually the closest guess won a bag of hot peanuts, but our observer noticed another funny thing. Most of the guesses were off. Wildly off. Like, “haven’t these country bumpkins ever seen an ox before?” off. But he was one of those charming old-timey polymaths, so he had an idea. After the crowd shuffled off, he approached the man in charge and inquired whether he might have the scraps of paper guesses. This is one of history’s best data collection moments, by the way.

Long story short, our man, Francis Galton, ran the numbers and found that the average guess was one measly pound away from the ox’s weight. In fact, the average was much closer to the animal’s weight than the single best guess. Somehow, the unruly mob, who couldn’t be trusted with democracy, much less you life in a bar fight, could be trusted to know something no single member of the mob knew. This is also one of history’s best WTF moments, by the way.

Fast forward a century and we are using crowdsourcing every day. Sometimes it’s just another word for statistics, the field Galton helped birth. Sometimes it’s just another word for voting, and the result is no great WTF moment. We can use the crowd to answer questions in different ways. Anyone who researches their blog’s SEO knows that Google’s algorithm for search results uses certain data points from your blog more than others. And this is why I think Pinterest is better for images of interesting stuff. An image explodes across pin boards based on one data point: someone found it interesting enough to repin it. In 2010 when I started pinning, this didn’t happen much. Now, when I see an image in my Pinterest feed, someone either pinned it from the web, or – more likely – re-pinned it from another board. This means that the images I see are filtered through at least two iterations of interest, and usually way more. Interest sells, people. This is powerful stuff.

This is why I increasingly search Pinterest for trends, styles, and techniques to use in my art and products. Google images is good when I need a perfect amigurumi blue bird, but Pinterest is best when I’m looking for some cool amigurumi to make for my friend’s kid’s birthday party. Pinterest finds a more interesting result because of crowdsourcing. It hits the ox on the head. (Whoops! Poor ox.) The same applies to product development, inspiration, illustrating blog posts, or whatever iron you have in the fire right now.

Below the images are the best boards to follow for fiber art and other fun stuff. Show me your favorites with links in the comments.

If you’re not on Pinterest yet, leave a comment and I’ll send you an invitation.

Yours truly,

Lorna at Knits for Life



Free Crochet Patterns and My Crochet Designs by Anne Marie’s Crochet Blog

Camp Crafts by Jill Watt of The Dapper Toad

Knitting Apps and other fiber art boards by knitomatic

CROCHET and My Projects by According to Matt

Techniques I Love and San Francisco Etsy Team Spotted by Lisa Spinella of Tickle and Smash

Scarf inspiration and Patronen en kleuren (Patterns and colors) by Mia Vandenbossche

Fun with fiber and textiles and DIY by Lorna Watt at Knits for Life

One’s Tea Cozies by Loani Prior, the Tea Cosy Queen

Eco boards by Team Eco Etsy

Sustainable Lingerie by Oceana’s Canvas

Clothes to Wear by Andrea of The Paper Sparrow

Fun boards by The Men of Etsy

Eccentric beauty and Imagination by Cody James

New Patterns, New Products

Something to Knit Your Man

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In a dark little café pub near the Black Forest in Germany, I came to love hot drinks served in ceramic white pint glasses. Reliving those gemütliche college days every time I sip tea, Earl Grey, hot is easy with IKEA’s lovely and affordable POKAL tumblers.

Slurping the first sip of a hot drink is one of life’s little pleasures, but hard to do without a mug handle. After perfecting a custom cozy, I wanted to make one for my sweetheart for Valentine’s Day that wouldn’t embarrass him at work. A touch of geekery and voilà: I love you in Morse code.

Get the pattern in the shop for just $1.99 here:

Or get the knitted item for just $15 here:

What do you sip your tea in?