My current work in progress:

Seaforth designed by Alice Starmore, knit in British Breeds 5-ply Guernsey Wool on US 3 needles.


Lucy’s Story


Some more about my new kitty friend.

(Sorry guys — not a whole heckuva lot of knit content today, but if you’ll bear with me, there’s a knitting bit at the end!)

I found Lucy online, at a local rescue shelter, through

Her original name, by the way, was Grace. I renamed her because I had a Great Aunt Grace who Would Not Have Liked Having a Cat Named After Her. Why Lucy? She’s slightly cross-eyed. Get it? Her full name is Lucy Liu. Besides, it suits her.

This poor little kitty found herself in a shelter because her previous owners had her declawed and let her outside. She was attacked by a dog and was badly bitten because she couldn’t defend herself. Her owners didn’t want to pay her vet bills after the attack, so gave her up.

(Note: I’d like to find these people and put them in a cage of hungry tigers so they could see how it feels to be defenseless against a larger animal with teeth and claws.)

I emailed Lucy’s foster mom about her, and we made arrangements for me to meet her at an adoption event at a local pet store the weekend before last. Of course I fell in love with her as soon as I laid eyes on her. The adoption was finalized Sunday night when a volunteer brought her to my home for a combination home visit/delivery.

The organization I got Lucy from is Capital Animal Care, in Arlington, Virginia. Their list of pets available for adoption is here. If you are in the Washington DC area and thinking about adopting a pet, I encourage you to check out their listings. They have beautiful cats and dogs, and some smaller furry animals too. And you couldn’t deal with a nicer group of people. Lucy’s foster mom, Barbara, was wonderful throughout the process, and her love for, commitment to, and bond with the animals is obvious.

When the volunteer brought Lucy to me, she came out of the cat carrier readily enough, did a perimeter check of the room, and climbed in a bookcase. But fifteen minutes after he left, she was in my lap, being brushed, and purring in ecstacy.

She has gotten over a lot of her timidity, though she still looks concerned if she hears a noise outside my condo. I’m pleased to report that she ate some food last night and while I was getting ready for work this morning, I saw her stroll into the kitchen and eat some more. She spent most of the night curled up at the foot of my bed. I think she’s decided she likes this place.

She has a shaved spot on her side — she went back to the vet to have her bite wound checked recently and was shaved then. I can see how badly she was bitten, the poor little thing! She is still taking some antibiotics (and she even lets me give them to her!) but the wound has healed well and should cause no further problems.

You can see that her fur is uneven where she was shaved in this photo.


Sorry the photos aren’t the best — she’s been on the move, checking out her new home!


Knitting Content Here

See? Toldja there’d be some!

I did a wee bit on the bottom facing of the Roscalie Cardigan. Lucy seems quite taken with the Hebridean 2-ply wool, rubbing her face against it happily. So said WIP is being carefully put away in a zip-top knitting bag when I’m not around. Don’t want Lucy knitting on it without me! But she doesn’t seem overly concerned with me knitting — doesn’t seem inclined to chase the yarn.


Hopefully I’ll get into the pattern by the next blog entry, but I wouldn’t count on it. Not when I have such a cute little fur-face to play with!


  1. Lucy’s coloring is beautiful. Does she have a Siamese meow? Sounds like she already is realizing she is one lucky kitty to have ended up in your family!

  2. Congrats, Wendy! She’s lovely! And we don’t mind more kitty talk thatn knitty talk, do we? I know I don’t.. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  3. vanessa says:

    lucy is lovely!

  4. Wendy, I’m SO happy that you got her from rescue. That’s how I got my Peanut and Max. Peanut was in an accident and was shaved on one whole side of her body, with a broken pelvis and a couple broken ribs, and a little chunk taken out of her tongue..someone let this little 2 month old kitten out and she got hit by a car. Same deal, I would love to find those people and show them what it feels like. They thought she wouldn’t be able to jump or play like the other cats..HA..we showed ’em!! ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m sure Lucy will adjust beautifully..seems like she already has!

    I have a knitting question for you too. I was trying to swatch for Aranmor last night, and I CANNOT get gauge!! I am using Jamieson’s Soft Shetland. I went down to a size 5 needle and I was closer to the stitch gauge but 4 rows too many on the row gauge. Should I give up trying to do this sweater with that yarn?? I tried about 4 different swatches, and it just isn’t happening. ๐Ÿ™‚


  5. Daphne, if you simply can’t get the row gauge, you might want to give up and try a different yarn. The other alternative would be to adjust the pattern to suit your row gauge. Knit the body to the length you want, rather than “x” number of rows, and when you knit the sleeves, do the increases more frequently than called for in the pattern so you’ve increased enough by the tme you get the proper length.

    This may or may not work with Aranmor. I’d have to look at the pattern motifs on the sweater — you might not want to stop on the body in the middle of a large motif, know what I mean? But you could adjust for that — start the patterns at a different point so that when you finish, you are at the correct place in the charts.

    Hope this makes sense . . .

  6. Melissa, Lucy is talkative, but has a quiet little meow, not a Siamese voice. Though I don’t know if she’s just being subdued right now. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  7. Thanks Wendy! I’m going to try and swatch again tonight, if I can’t get close I think I’ll just try a different pattern with this yarn and buy something else for Aranmor. I tried even swatching for Tara with it and that wasn’t happening either..and I know I’m not that loose of a knitter. ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. Lucy is beautiful. Some people just can’t be trusted with pets. Or children for that matter. She sounds like she’s adjusting very well.

  9. Welcome to beautiful Lucy! She sounds like a perfect match for you! ๐Ÿ™‚ Very happy for both of you!

  10. Deb McMeen says:

    Lucy is a lovely kitty–congratulations to both of you! We got our Spike when someone put a 6-week old kitten out and abandoned him. We heard him meowing piteously and since I was 8.5 months pregnant at the time, my hormones went nuts and we took him in, though we already had one cat. Someone had cut Spike’s whiskers down to practically nothing and lord knows when he’d been fed last. Three days later I had a beautiful baby girl and two cats. We eventually had to give the other one (Tuppence) away because she didn’t like the baby, but Spike has stayed with the family ever since. Both cat and baby are now 20 years old. The baby goes to college, the cat goes to the basement. May you have many long happy years with Lucy!

  11. Catherine says:

    Isolde is smiling.

  12. Beth S. says:

    Wendy, Lucy is a lovely girl! I think she must be exactly what you needed. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Speaking of Aranmor, I have been wracking my brains lately for a really good substitute for Magpie/Bainin. You’ve done many, many substituitions for these yarns, to judge from your gallery of finished work, and I’m wondering which yarn you thought performed the best as a substitute.

    I love the look of “farm yarns” from places like Carodan, Bovidae, and Beaverslide, but since these yarns are all woolen-spun, I’m afraid the stitch definition won’t be very good. What do you think?

  13. Lucy is just beautiful. I hope her former “keepers” know enough now to never get another cat. What idiocy.

    Love the kitty content, but I’m looking forward to seeing Roscalie emerge!


  14. Lucy’s story is heartwarming (that she is now in a safe and loving home) and also angers me that humans can be so cruel. I sure appreciate the vets who refuse to declaw – saying what human would want their fingernails pulled out and left raw? My cats have always had scratching posts and if they start to scratch on furniture I just gently bring them over to their post and make scratching motions (sometimes add catnip) and they catch right on. Our youngest adoptee scratched the couch a few times and I just sprayed him with an old Windex bottle filled with water and he quit immediately as he hated the water and also the hissing noise the spraying made. Lucy’s a lucky kitty and I enjoy seeing pics of her:)

  15. Lucy has such a sweet little face. She sounds like she is taking to your home nicely. I think the pets who have been through some tough times are sosweet and appreciative of a second chance.

  16. Lucy is beautiful – and she’s smart enough to know that she’s found the perfect home ๐Ÿ™‚

  17. Congratulations on the new arrival! To my way of thinking, cats are not an option, they are a necessity. She looks like a love.

  18. Lucy is beautiful and it sounds like she already feels at home with you.

    I won’t tell you how I feel about people who abuse/neglect animals, but the basic philosophy is an eye for an eye.

    Keep the kitty tales coming–I never tire of them!


  19. Congratulations to both of you! I think you’ve found a wonderful cat and she’s found a wonderful person.

    I wouldn’t be sure that she won’t chase yarn, perhaps she’s still getting the feel of it down before she decides that it’s one of her toys.

    My three little angels had me fooled, ignoring yarn and needles for the longest time. Then one morning I came down to find the biggest cats cradle in the world – about 2 full 100g skeins wound through the sunroom, around table and chair legs, behind radiators, back into the kitchen and round again. And it was *full* of cat hair, having been played with all night.

    They ignored it and me as I wound it up muttering dark thoughts of cats.


  20. Awwww…congratulations on getting your new kitty! And Lucy is a neat-o name for a pet. I know this, because my own pet is named Lucy, too. [Lucy the Cat, meet Lucy the Dog:

  21. Wendy, I’m thrilled to read that you and your new kitty are bonding so well. She’s really beautiful, and it looks like a great match.

  22. Congrats Wendy on your new companion! Lucy is such a sweet little puddy cat.

    I live in Hollywood, California and it recently became the first city in the U.S. to pass an ordinance banning any vet within its borders to declaw cats. Last year they officially declared that pets are “companions” of rather than “owned” by their humans. Next month the city council will debate the issue of banning the docking of dog tails and ears. Suffice to say, it is a pro-animal place for my 3 kitties and dog to live.

    Looking forward to more knitting and kitty news in the future.

  23. ooops .. make that West Hollywood.

  24. Chandra says:

    Wendy, you sound so much happier now! I’m very glad for you. Enjoy your new fur friend.

  25. Welcome Lucy!

    As for her former people…I will defend murderers, child rapists and sundry folks, but refuse to defend animal abusers….those b**tards are way over my line in the sand, go figure.

  26. Lucy is so lovely! Shame on those previous humans! As someone said earlier, you don’t want to know what I have to say about bad humans who do bad things to animals. I don’t even like the terms “owners”, as I feel animals are the extension of your family (and sometimes they treat you better than your own family).

    Hoping you’ll have many wonderful years with Lucy… Isolde is purring in happiness for you!

  27. Bridget says:

    Your Lucy is beautiful! I’m so pleased for both of you. It is wonderful to know that her story is going to end happily…the poor kitty must have been terrified after being injured and abandoned. Good luck to you both.

    The Kitties who share my house are Lucy and Desi. My Lucy is the official knitting supervisor and would like to knit without me!

    Good luck…. Bridget, Lucy and Desi

  28. Elmyra Farquhar says:

    Hey, nice new blog logo, Wendy. Lucy is SO cute!

    And Keiko, I’ve heard that West Hollywood California is also going to ban as cruel and unusual punishment of pets – spaying and neutering, putting dogs on leashes, having birds in cages, making pet cats use litter boxes, keeping fleas in circuses, and forcing kangaroos to serve as judges in courts. It’s true, I tell you! I read it in a tabloid (I don’t remember if it was the Globe or the Inquirer) and they never lie! That’s how I learned the truth about Earth being a gigantic zoo that was populated by an alien race for its own amusement. And that God summarily punished that alien race by blasting to smithereens their home planet and sucking the ammonia out of every one of their flying saucers, the upshot being that that alien race is now extinct, and we’re stuck on this lovely planet here trying to get along with grizzly bears, cobras, and bengal tigers. Excuse me, it’s time for my medication.

  29. Glad you found Lucy. You two need each other.

    How much knitting time do you usually get in? Daily? Weekends?

  30. I have a knitty question: I have recently found Ron Schweitzer’s designs: with your beautiful work & his designs, my head has become completely turned & I’m becoming obsessed in wanting to try one & moving into FI (What have you done to me, girl!!??)Have you thought of any of his designs?? Are they to simple or plain for your tastes?? He often uses only 5 colours compared with AS’s 20. I would be interested in your thoughts.

  31. Lisa, it varies. Two to three hours a day maybe?

  32. Peter, I’ve got a couple of books that have Ron’s designs in them — and I even have the wool for one of his fair isles. The Starmore I’m knitting right now only has 5 colors, by the way.

    So I will be knitting the Ron design I have the wool for eventually. (Can’t remember which design it is right now!) And it’s funny you should mention it — I was just thinking about that yarn today!

    It’s a matter of “too many fair isles, too little time!”

  33. Hi there, (sorry, I sent this as a email first then realized that the comment are might be what you prefer!)

    I have been an avid observer of your knitting projects for a few months now and was wondering if you could spare a moment to advise me on a dale

    Project. I want to knit the St. Moritz in the grey/black colourway for my husband who has sensitive skin. Would you recommend the heilo or the superwash falk?

    Thanks for your time


  34. Lucy is so beautiful! Congratulations on her adoption. She looks so happy in your home ๐Ÿ™‚


  35. I would also be interested in hearing your comments regarding super wash wool. I seem to remember a previous posting where you mention that you don’t like to use it. I recently started a sweater (many times, now)using super wash wool. I am not sure I like it — it just seems that the texture is different even though the person who sold it to me says it’s like working with regular wool.

  36. Peter – you have asked my question about Ron Schweitzer already! I have fallen in love with St. Michaels. Wendy I envy you your knitting time – but if I had that many hours I would never be able to complete the amounts you do.
    Claudia – I am a criminal defence lawyer too and I totally understand your feelings! somehow there is a boundary when it comes to people who abuse animals.
    Lucy is lovely and I wish you both happy times together.

  37. Yay For Lucy!! I’m so glad you rescued her, she’s gorgeous and her previous owners should be arrested!

  38. What a gorgeous grrl Lucy is! She looks quite content ๐Ÿ™‚ I found my two furkids through also– that whole site, and the folks who run the individual rescues and shelters it’s linked to– they are amazing people.