My current work in progress:

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



I was a good girl and knitted diligently on Ms. Flora last night. Her collar is done (except for weaving in ends) and I’m working on a front band. The collar has 28 rows of painstaking two-color garter stitch, but each of the front bands has half that — 14 rows. Breathing easier.



Front band:


I was very grateful to have my Ott Light for the picking up of the stitches on the front band. The background color is rather dark.

By the way, if you are not already doing so, do go over and visit Lisa’s Flora. It’s great fun to see another Flora, a Flora sibling, if you will, taking shape!

Critter Knitting — er — Crocheting

Still crocheting away on my second BLANKIE. (Yes, you heard me correctly, I shouted the word “blankie.” If “blankie” offends you, well, bitez-moi.)

Anyway . . .

I’m surprised at how quickly I’ve gotten back in the saddle again, as it were, with crochet. Is Wendy going to forsake knitting for crochet? Is she going to live out her days crocheting granny squares? No no no. Emphatically no. But I am surprising myself with how quickly and easily I am crocheting now. Compared with how clumsily and ineptly I was crocheting a week ago.

Ooh! That reminds me — did anyone else have a funky granny square vest when they were a kid? When I was 12 or 13 they were oh-so-in-style and my grandmother made one for me. I was too cool for words.

I’m no doubt dating myself with that statement.

Questions! And Maybe Some Answers Too!

The other day Nathania asked:

I am nearing the bottom of the armhole on my Dale baby sweater and I have a question about armhole steeks on Dales. Do you actually cast on for armholes or do you follow the Dale instructions and just continue in the round and trust that those 4 stitches are enough?

I follow the Dale instructions. Remember, you won’t be picking up stitches around the armholes and knitting down, like you wold in a fair isle sweater. You are knitting the sleeve separately and sewing them into the cut-open armholes.

I wrote an article for Knitty last year about Norwegian sleeve steeks. You can check it out here.

And there was a question yesterday about Lucy from Barb:

Is Lucy’s hair as silky and shiny as it looks in her pics? She is just so beautiful.

Why, thank you, Barb, from both Lucy and me! Lucy’s fur is very soft and silky and does not get tangles or mats in it, which makes brushing her an easy task. And she loves being brushed! Ragdoll kitties’ fur has been compared to rabbit fur and I think that’s an accurate description.



Thanks for all your kind words and good wishes on my second blog-iversary. I find that I still have plenty to yap and drone on about, so no doubt I’ll be blogging for a while longer.

Critter Knitter Blankets Clarification

I’ve gotten a couple of questions in comments about materials for Critter Knitters blankets — can blankets be woven on a loom? Can they made from one layer of a fleece material?

I would say the answer to both questions is yes. As long as the basic guidelines are adhered to — the blankets are machine washable and dryable and constructed in a manner so that they won’t easily fall apart, and of course meet the size requirements, than anything goes. Within reason. 🙂

April Contest

The April contest will be announced on Monday, so y’all come back now, hear?


  1. Johanne says:

    Hej Wendy!
    That Flora-collar is worth all the effort. It´s a beauty! 😀
    A very unusual pattern, isn´t it?


  2. Jo in Boston says:

    I have to admit I had two granny square vests, crocheted by the aunt who taught me to knit when I was six. I believe one involved harvest gold and the other was red, white and blue. I cringe just thinking about them.

  3. Flora looks great! I’ve stashed her for future entertainment! I had a granny square mini skirt, circa 1969 – oh I was sooo chic and Cher-like!

  4. I probably still have a granny-square vest in the attic. Mom made it when I entered junior high. I have it on good authority that Lucy is pining for a granny-square blankie! 😉

  5. jocelyn says:

    i am to young to have had a granny square vest but my mom probably did!!
    I will be out of town all next week spring break so i will try to check in hope the contest is fun
    Have a great weekend!!!

  6. I had a granny square vest my mom made me and a poodle skirt – which really dates me. The skirt was gray with a white poodle in the front and my vest was pink and white. Growing old gracefully……..(Amazing one could remember that far back, har.)

    Your Flora is beautiful. You have such patience with your knitting and it shows.

    Kisses to your beautiful Lucy and have a great weekend.

  7. Hey, Wendy, remind me again – what’s the URL for the local cat rescue group? I’m thinking that I’m ready to have a cat or two living in my house again and will start looking in earnest after our May trip. It’d be nice to get a purebreed, like yours, if possible and I need to do my homework on passing inspection by the foster guardians.

  8. Jazminecat says:

    Hi Wendy – love your blog – it’s where I start my day most days, and work around the blogs from there. And I love Lucy – she’s gorgeous. Which leads me to my question. Does she have her front claws? My kitty loves my knitting as much as Lucy seems to love yours, but recently she loved something I didn’t want her to love. I was blocking this lovely tangerine and lime sweater I made for a friend’s child, and Jazmine decided to sleep on it…and subsequently snagged it. It’s 100% cotton and I’m heartbroken and have no idea how to fix it. She managed to snag it on two sides, and not a whole stitch mind you, just a thread from the yarn. It’s not broken, but it definitely ruined the perfection of the knitted cotton and I’m not sure what to do now. Any advice, other than keep her off my knitting? Does Lucy ever snag yours? thanks, and thanks for keeping the blogiverse interesting for a lot of us!

  9. Another Wendy says:

    I think granny square vests are now cool again, in a retro kind of way. There’s a beautiful knitted sweater with a crocheted granny square bottom border in the last (Winter?) Interweave Knits.

  10. Thank you for the armhole steek advice, Wendy. I’m getting braver all the time. I’m even going to attempt a neckhole steek on my baby Dale who I’ve named Lillerosa. Woohoo!

    Give Lucy a scratch behind her ears for me.

  11. Could you address a question about the charts for Fair Isle knitting? You have been knitting FI (beautifully) for awhile and must have used different charts. For AS designs in her original books she used a different symbol for each color in a design. It was very easy to copy for the magnetic board and follow along. Jamieson followed suit for books I and II. Ann Feitelson’s book seems to have started the colored charts craze. Colored squares are used for each stitch which makes it difficult (almost impossible) to copy for use on a magnetic board. This method has made it necessary to rechart with symbols for each color on Excel. Sometimes it is very hard to tell the colors apart even with a good color copy. These charts are just confusing to many of us. Do you have a preference? Do you rechart the color graphs? Are VY charts symbols or colored? Writing to Jamieson to complain might be an option here.

  12. The Flora collar is gorgeous and well worth whatever effort it takes. But I did hear from someone/somewhere a trick to make Alice S fair-isle ribbing a bit easier. The trick was to “knit” the same row twice, the first time knitting (or purling) only one colour and slipping the stitches that apply to the second colour. Then go back to beginning of the row –we are talking circular needles of course– and knit (or purl) the second colour, slipping the stitches knit in the first go-round. That makes it go quicker, and should avoid having to move yarn forward and back to accommodate knit-purl combinations.

  13. I’ll see you one granny square vest and raise you … a granny-square poncho. My gram only knew how to make granny squares, made us all afghans, then walked the boardwalk at Coney Island to see what college girls were wearing (some thirty years ago). I might still have that somewhere…

  14. Hey, Lola!

    I hope you DO rescue and give forever homes to one or two lucky shelter cats! If you are looking for a specific breed, you can also go to and type up your location and breed and see what comes up. I tried it today with Siamese in NYC and a bunch of ‘mesers came up.

    ALL cats are beautiful in their wild grace, regardless of breed! They are little tigers exquisite in their small tigered packages.
    I hope you give a lucky cat or two a chance at a real life outside a shelter cage.

    Many Blessings!