My current work in progress:

1. Ashburn, designed by Melanie Berg, knit from Woolfolk Tynd in colorways 6, 7, and 8 on a 4 mm (U.S. size 6) needle.
2. Myriad stealth projects.

Mmmmmm . . . Butterscotch!

That’s the thought flitting through my fevered brain as I knit this glorious creature that is Debbie Bliss Alpaca Silk in color #25008.

Here’s the back of my sweater.

laura101704 Mmmmmm . . . Butterscotch!

I think I’ll call her Laura.

Eloise

I sewed Eloise together Friday night, and put buttons on her.

eloise101704 Mmmmmm . . . Butterscotch!

The buttons (an eBay purchase) are glass, with a hint of color in them — aurora borealis. They go very nicely with this colorway.

I’m wearing Eloise to work today, over a white tee and denim skirt. It’s a very soft and cuddly sweater.

A word of warning to potential Eloise knitters: I made the sleeves a full 2.5″ shorter than the pattern directs.

I made the second from the largest size, which called for ten skeins. I used 9.5 skeins, with the shortened sleeves. I think it would have been close had I made the sleeves as directed.

But check out the photo. I think the sleeves are the perfect length.

Reader Questions

Susan asked:
Do you have any advice on the care (and blocking) of Silk Garden items? I know the label says dry clean only, but I’ve also heard that some have washed Silk Garden with no ill effect. What do you recommend?

I have always had very good results gently handwashing items marked “Dry Clean Only.” Silk Garden is no exception. I think others have handwashed their Klaralunds — anyone wanna jump in here?

And Toby asked:
I’m fairly new to knitting and have a question that I was hoping you’d be able to answer. When a pattern says to end with RS facing, does that mean the right side is facing away or towards you?

Good question! I interpret that to mean that the right side should be facing you for the next row, meaning you just completed a wrong side row.

Ungodly Hour of the Morning

I’ve been getting a lot of comments and emails lately asking me why the hell I am up and posting at the ghastly hour that I do.

I leave home to go to work at 5:00am. You do the math.

Lucy thinks I’m nuts too.

lucy101704 Mmmmmm . . . Butterscotch!

Friday! Friday! Friday!

Friday, the most glorious day of the week. I never thought I’d make it, yet here I am. Well, the week ain’t over yet. We’ll see.

Newsflash — I wore my Klaralund yesterday. I’m very happy with her and can report that I had no issues. No fighting with the rest of my outfit. No unseemly bunching up hither and yon. Klara’s a cool chick.

Here’s an early evening photo from Sleeve Island:

eloise101404 Friday! Friday! Friday!

And . . . later last night I finished the second sleeve of Eloise. All that remains is to sew her sweet self together. Oh, and put buttons on her.

So . . . what’s up knitwise?

Remember a while back I bought a second pile of Debbie Bliss Alpaca Silk to make her design Freida? And then I decided, in my own distinctive wish-washy way that I would use the yarn to make Magnolia from Rowan Vintage Style?

bliss101404 Friday! Friday! Friday!

I’ve changed my mind again. My lovely golden tan Alpaca Silk is in the beginning stages of being knit into a new Wendyknits design. Just a simple, easy-fitting pullover, probably with a crew neck.

I’ve had a couple of questions about buying drop spindles. I bought mine online, from The Bellwether. If you do a Google search for “Bosworth midi” you’ll find a number of online retailers.

On a Clear Day, You Can See for 1,609 Miles

Here’s the Yahoo weather report for National Airport from yesterday afternoon:

Feels Like: 66 degrees
Barometer: 29.59 in and falling
Humidity: 65%
Visibility: 1609 mi
Dewpoint: 54 degrees
Wind: N 8 mph
Sunrise: 7:17 am
Sunset: 6:30 pm

lucy101404 Friday! Friday! Friday!

Blossom, Baby

Yes, my pets, it’s been all Blossom all the time here at Wendyknits.

This yarn is truly fabulous. Emily summed it up quite nicely in a comment the other day:

Blossom is like the recycled silk yarn, but without all the dust and grit and weird smell of the real thing!

That’s it in a nutshell. It really, really does look like recycled silk, but it’s actually very soft and easy to knit. I think it’s going to make a very comfy sweater.

Okay, here’s a comparison. If recycled silk yarn were a woman’s voice, it would be Selma Diamond (may she rest in peace).

Blossom is Lauren Bacall.

And Eloise is coming along nicely.

Here is her body, all nicely laid out. (Eeeeeew, that sounds weird.)

eloise101304 Blossom, Baby

And her first sleeve.

eloise101304a Blossom, Baby

Help! I’m on sleeve island! Becky, on your way off the island, please send the cabana boy over to take my drink order, ‘kay?

Why, yes, I do know that I have no business whining about my Eloise sleeves. They are not gorilla sleeves. They are dainty little things. And I’m making them shorter than the pattern directs. I really really like “bracelet length” sleeves. As written, they look like gorilla arms to me. Perhaps I just have short stubby arms.

Some Notes on Lara

I wore my Lara to work yesterday and lemmee tell ya, she is one soft and cuddly mama! I love her.

I was wearing her over a brown silk dress (Laura Ashley, bought off eBay for next to nothing, thank you very much) and noticed that Lara and Laura did not really play well together. In fact, they fought all day. Lara kept trying to get away from Laura by sliding off my shoulders. I was wearing it open, sans pin, like a Chanel jacket.

So in future, if I wear Lara over a silk dress, she shall be pinned closed. Firmly.

Wanna see what I looked like at 3:30 yesterday morning? Photo in the mirror shot!

wendy101304 Blossom, Baby

Yes, this is what we at Wendyknits do when insomnia strikes. We get up early, get ready for work, and photograph ourselves.

What — doesn’t everyone do that?

Miss Lucy thought I was wacky. She had gone back to bed in disgust by the time I left for the office.

lucy101304 Blossom, Baby

And just for grins, here is what the sky looked like at 7:03am yesterday morning. (Monica obligingly turned out the office lights so I could get a good shot out the window, thereby freaking out one of our contractors who had innocently entered our office suite. Never let it be said that we don’t have fun at the office!)

sky101304 Blossom, Baby

And this is basically the same shot at 1:54pm.

sky101304a Blossom, Baby

Why, yes, I am barely coherent. Why do you ask?

Good Day Sunshine

That’s what yesterday was. Even though I had to go to work Even though I had an hour-long conference call that I was secretly wishing I could knit through, but needed to keep my hands free to take notes.

And even though on the train home I found myself in the middle of what looked like a gang war. I made myself as small as possible and sat quietly and knitted, and was glad I had my Addi Turbos rather than bamboo needles. I figured the Addis would make better weapons if I needed to defend myself.

But no one killed me and I made it home safely. And driving home from the train I even had a moron run a red light but survived that, due to good reflexes.

Do you ever fear for your life on public transportation? That may seem a little dramatic, but I have had a few instances (fortunately very few!) where I was definitely uncomfortable if not downright scared on the train.

Hey Mom, if you’re reading this (which I doubt because you are in Spearfish, South Dakota this week and I very much doubt you have internet access while you’re away and I hope you don’t read back entries when you return home) — it’s okay! Stuff like that almost never happens.

But anyhow.

My reward was waiting when I got home.

I’ll say it now: I love Dena!

For Dena sent me this:

fiber101204 Good Day Sunshine

Wait, let me spread it out for you:

fiber101204a Good Day Sunshine

(Do you like how I use my stove for display purposes? Cooking? Huh? Whazzat?)

Dena read my blog entry last week about wanting to learn to spin, and she very kindly offered to send me some fibery samples. I got the box and opened it and . . . Wowie, wow, wow!

The photo does not do this justice. There is some beautiful, beautiful fiber in here. As well as some Kool-aid, to tempt me to dye my own! And a beautiful distaff!

Dena also sent me an email documenting in detail the contents of the box, and giving sources for where I can get more of this gorgeous stuff.

Again, wow.

Huge thank-you, Dena!

And guess what else I got yesterday?

betty101204 Good Day Sunshine

Meet Betty. Betty is my new Bosworth Midi spindle. I think I love her.

Kindly note that Betty is reclining seductively on a 1 kg. block of Valrhona baking chocolate. Some of you know what that means — Valrhona brownies!!

Kristine? Amelia? Are you reading this? Heh heh heh.

Anyhow, I got me lotsa sample fiber, I got me a lovely new spindle. Now I just gotta figure out this spinning thang. I fiddled around with it some last night (with Lucy watching intently) but I think I’m gonna wait to really try it out. For I will be spending the first weekend in November in the company of a spinner extraordinaire (cough :: L-B :: cough) and I’d rather have some in-person instruction. I am a visual kinda gal.

Eloise

I started knitting the right side front of Eloise. I started it on the train yesterday morning and was blithely knitting along when I remembered, just in the nick of time, that I needed to make buttonholes in this side. To quote a great contemporary American philosopher: “Doh!”

So I’m all buttonholed up. Here is a nice artistic shot of Eloise that shows you nothing important:

eloise101204 Good Day Sunshine

I did finish the right side front last night, so I promise you better photos tomorrow. There’ll even be the start of some sleevage, honest.

(Y’all come here for the sleevage, right?)

A Noro first-timer, Carol is knitting Eloise as well, in the same colorway, #6. She asks if she should attempt to match the stripes. I say no. Blossom seems even more random in its striping sequence that the other Noro yarns I’ve used. Attempting to match would drive me insane.

Random Q&A

Jacinta asked if I heard back from Rowan about the discrepancy I allege is in the Fern pattern. I did, and they claim there is nothing wrong with it. However, I knit it according to my adjustments and it came out perfect. So . . . go figure.

And Eilene asked if Butterfly is heavy. Yeah, pretty heavy, I’d say. I think it’ll make a great outdoors sweater for cool mornings now, and may morph itself into an indoor sweater in the dead of winter.

Cuz they say it’s gonna be a cold one this year.

“Meow. Bring it on!”

lucy101204 Good Day Sunshine

A Better Butterfly

Thanks for all your very kind comments about Butterfly! I think you deserve better photos, so I gave it a try.

butterfly101104 A Better Butterfly

And lying flat:

butterfly101104a A Better Butterfly

Knitting Bloggers Cookbook

Calling all knitbloggers who cook! Elizabeth of My Favorite Things is putting together a cookbook with recipes from knitbloggers. I’ve sent her a couple of my original creations to include, and encourage all you foodies out there to do the same. Check out her blog for details.

Eloise

I’ve made some good progress on Eloise — this is a very fast knit. I finished the back:

eloise101104 A Better Butterfly

Actually I finished the left side front, too, last night. But too late to take a photo.

There was a comment yesterday that the Noro Blossom yarn resembles recycled sari silk. It really does! This colorway is lovely, and the photo really doesn’t do it justice. It’s a wool/mohair/silk/nylon blend, and as I said yesterday, it’s quite nice to knit with. It’s sort of thick and thin with slubs here and there, but is easy to work with. I am a fan. icon smile A Better Butterfly

This little cardi will need five buttons, and I need to start thinking about what kind of buttons to get. I’m thinking about wooden buttons, or maybe picking up one of the colors. What do you all think?

Lucy thinks it’s a lot of fuss over a silly sweater!

lucy101104 A Better Butterfly