My current work in progress:

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


Mmmmmm . . . Steeky Goodness!

Ah, just getting into the pattern on Roscalie.


For the cardi, you knit a facing in a solid color in stockinette stitch, do a purl row for the turning, then commence the fair isle pattern.

And because this is a cardi, there’s a steek running down the front of it. And you know what that means, don’t you? You start and end the different colors in the center of the front steek. Yahoo! No tying off the ends, no weaving in the ends. Just let them bad boys hang, cuz they’ll be cut off when I cut open the front steek.

Life can be so good sometimes.

Contest Update

I’ve gotten lots of really cute entries for the “vanity plate” contest. Keep ’em coming!

Superwash Wool

A couple of questions in my comments about superwash wool, specifically Heilo (which isn’t) and Falk (which is). As a rule, I don’t like superwash wool. Most of the ones I have experienced have a slightly harsh feel to them, due undoubtedly to the chemical processing they undergo to make them able to withstand machine washing and drying.

But superwash baby wools I’ve knitted with seem to be the exception — like Dale Baby Ull. That’s a fingering weight superwash merino and it’s as nice and soft as can be.

Lucy Update


Lucy did a little happy dance when I came home from work yesterday. And she sat next to me while I knitted last night and feigned indifference.



  1. I agree with you about Baby Ull. It’s my favorite for baby sweaters. Knitpicks is having a sale on it…. $4something a skein. I think I might try out your Baby Norgi sweater!

  2. Ooops… I did it again… Made a new button. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    (And while I was at it, I made a matching top banner… Sorry, I got carried away… ๐Ÿ˜ฎ Gimme a beep if you want to see it)


  3. Kristen says:

    Does anyone know where we can see a photo of a completed Rosecalie? I’ve googled and checked out Virtual Yarns, but haven’t found one.

  4. Kristen, my buddy Geane knitted Roscalie — photo here:

    Marit — I just emailed you, begging you to email me the top banner you made. I love the button!

  5. Wow! I go to Florida for a week and you’ve finished one sweater and started another! Wendy the Bionic Knitter! Lucy is beautiful and looks so cuddly! Lucky welcomed me home with a vole in his mouth,dropped it at my feet,then ate it. Ugh! I really missed Wendyknits while I was gone!

  6. Great to have yu back, L-B. Last night I was on the phone and suddenly heard a lot of squeaking in the other room. Lucy had picked up the mouse Lucky sent a couple of months ago and was obviously beatng the crap out of it! The squeaking went on for quite a while, so I think she had a lot of fun with it. ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. I’ll let Lucky know–he’ll be pleased! Molly plays with it more than Lucky does—I guess he prefers the real thing!

  8. Go Lucy, go! And Wendy too! I’m so glad you have a new kitty and Lucy has a new home.

  9. Lisa in NJ says:

    Love the new banner and button! Marit, you rock!

  10. I can’t get over how beautiful Lucy is, and how well she matches your couch! Izzy would be proud that her jobs have been taken over by such a regal looking kitty.

  11. She looks regal, but what a big baby she is! She rolls over and wriggles and waves her paws in the air when I pet her. She is so VERY affectionate. And so far, she’s slept at the foot of my bed every night.

  12. Great pics of Lucy today! Glad to see she’s taking on her role as blog mascot.

    I wonder if you’d post a pic sometime of what it looks like to pick up a short row double wrap and knit/purl it with the stitch. I’ve done it several times, now, in many different ways, and I cannot for the life of me decide which way is “right.” (Fortunately, they all hold the sock together, so I’m not overly worried about it.) Your article didn’t have a picture of that step, just picking up one wrap and knitting it w/the stitch. How exactly do you purl them? Thanks in advance!

  13. Well, I’ve been in a knitting slump, which makes me wonder even more how you can possibly be so prolific and consistent with your knitting! I’m amazed.

    As for Lucy – she’s a beaut! Congrats

  14. Oh, Lucy is lovely… what do you think, two
    weeks or so before she’s comfy enough to start
    “playing” with your yarn?

  15. Catherine says:

    Roscalie screams to be worn by a beautiful redhead. I’m guessing this sweater will be one of your very favorites to wear.

    Lucy knows how pretty she looks on your blue couch. I think she wants a blue and white china bowl for her kibble. “Blue Willow” will do for every day and she thinks Royal Copenhagen “Blue Lace” would be perfect for special occasions.

  16. Um . . . er . . . I do have a Royal Staffordshire blue and white bowl for Lucy. ๐Ÿ˜€

  17. Lucy looks so ‘at home’ in today’s photos…this is an adoption that was meant to be ๐Ÿ™‚
    Our dog Lily caught a snake this weekend! She had a great time throwing it up in the air and catching it in her mouth until my son rescued the poor snake and put it over the fence back in the woods, where it promptly slithered away. Lily spent the rest of the morning at the spot where she caught the snake, waiting for another to appear.

  18. Wendy,

    I’m about to start my first sock and I’m using your toe-up pattern. I have some questions I hope you won’t mind answering.

    First, when you undo the provisional cast-on, don’t you end up with one less stitch? Or do you automatically make an extra stitch while picking up?

    Second, some people recommend using a reinforcing thread (I know some sock yarns come with this), especially for toes and heels. Do you do this, and if you do, does it make a difference with wear?

    Last, do you swatch when using a new sock yarn or do you go by the recommended gauge? Some toe-up patterns claim that gauge doesn’t matter because you can adjust as you knit.

    Thank you, your knitting inspires me.


  19. Kathy Merrick says:

    Wendy, I’m interested in the opinions of other knitters regarding superwash. I’ve never really found any that behave well. The convenience factor never seems to make up for the sort of “phony” feeling the superwash process engenders, or for the sad tendency to s-t-r-e-t-c-h that the finished garment then has. The most disappointing one for me has been Mission Falls 1824. Beautiful colors, nice to stitch patterns. Then grows uncontrollably, and looks ancient after one washing.
    Anyone ever find a good one?

  20. Suzanne says:

    In response to Andrea’s question about short rowing, I wanted to let her know that the Vogue Book of Knitting (I think that is the correct title) has some good illustrations on short rowing. These should help you see how to pick up the wrap.

  21. I agree with you Kathy. Apart from Baby Ull, I’ve never met a superwash I liked.

    Cheryl, I’ll answer your sock questions in tomorrow’s blog.

  22. Karen Berglund says:

    Kitty, I saw your post about your dog with a snake. Our cats do that! Smokey came out of the woods one day carrying a snake like a little toy….He and his siblings had fun with it for quite a while before John took pity on it and took it away from them.

  23. Lucy is beautiful! What a gorgeous little face she has! Have to stop typing now before my four get jealous!

  24. I could use some help! I am knitting my first color and my first Dale. I am up to the neck part now. The Norge 2000 calls for knitting back/forth. I would rather not do this if I can avoid it.

    I saw how good all your Dales look, with the St. Moritz, of course, and noted that you did a steek instead.

    This would also be my first steek. So my question is how do you go about putting in a steek where there are no specific instructions?

  25. Glynis, read my blog entries from May 7 & 8 (click on the May archive) — that discusses neck steeks where there ain’t supposed to be any.

    I do a ten stitch steek — edge stitch, 8 steek stitches that you knit alternating the colors in the round, then another edge stitch. There’s a close up photo of my neck steek on one of those days.

  26. Wendy, re your remark about having never met a superwash that you liked. I’m curious if you’ve “met” Mission Falls 1824 wool? Also, I’m just now casting on to copycat “Purple Iris” from your sock Gallery using Lorna’s Laces (same yarn you used) and I’m wondering if you mean to include it in the group you don’t like?

  27. Roi, I haven’t used the mission Falls wool, but I think someone else in my comments today said it was disappointing. I don’t think the Lorna’s Laces sock yarn can be called superwash wool, can it? It’s like 80% wool, 20% nylon.

  28. Lucy is so freaking gorgeous. I love seeing her on your site. Give her a pet for me. And I’m glad Izzy’s gorgeous mug is still up on your site. She’s near, always, and I know she loves seeing making another fur-person happy. And your knitting is exquisite. I love your site. Thanks.

  29. Yes, Wendy, I saw Kathy’s remark about MF 1824 wool, and have used it for two baby sweaters as it feels less scratchie to me than Cascade 220, and now I’m a little worrid about these sweaters “growing”, especially the Baby Aran.

    I swatched with a Brown Sheep superwash (recommended by AS as substitute for Scottish Heather)and it felt “phony” to me and I chose not to use it.

    My Lorna’s Laces Shepherd Sport label says “100% superwash wool”. Its probably the Shephert Sock yarn that is 20% nylon. I’ve been wearing a Shepherd Sport sock knitted previously and it has not grown?

    I’m also knitting a baby sweater using Rowan 4 ply soft and love this yarn – but I’m not sure it is considered “superwash.”

    Interested to know others’ experiences.

  30. Ah, the only Lorna’s Laces yarn I used is the Shepherd sock — which does have nylon. I figured that’s what you were using cuz you mentioned “copycatting” my Purple Iris socks — those are made with Shepherd Sock. ๐Ÿ™‚

  31. Superwash wool depends like all things on the kind you use. I’ve never met a superwash that wasn’t at least a little bit splitty to knit (stripping off all the guard hairs is the culprit I suppose), but the better superwashes in Australia are very, very soft. Superfine Woollen Mills in Sydney, Australia sells some great stuff (don’t bother with Bendigo for superwash). As for generally available superwash I quite like Cleckheaton’s Machinewash but wouldn’t touch Cleckheaton Country with a barge pole – HORRIBLE STUFF.

    The only problem I’ve ever had with machine wash if I’ve bought the good stuff is its incredible expansion upon washing, so swatch-washing is an absolute must.

  32. Hi Wendy, congrats on your new kitty. Is she a Himmy? She’s beautiful!! Personally, I’d like to neuter her previous owners (I don’t see how people don’t figure that’s “part of the package” – especially in emergencies… I just spent over $700 in vet bills this month and accepted that as necessary. Sorry… shutting up now; surrendering because of expenses is just one of my “pet” peeves…) ANYWAY, I know she’ll be VERY happy there with you, and couldn’t ask for a better owner! And happy knitting. ๐Ÿ™‚