My current work in progress:

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



No, I’m not talking about myself.

I’m talking about the ribbing on Laura.

Lookie here:


I am a fan of the twisted rib. How to do it? Assuming an even number of stitches:

Row 1 (right side): [knit 1 through back loop, purl 1] to end of row.
Row 2: [purl 1 through back loop, knit 1] to end of row.

As easy as pie. (When I say “pie” I am pronouncing it the way Cartman does, by the way. “Pahhhhh . . .” Get it?)

And when you do this, the wrong side just looks like normal knitting. Cool, eh?


Lucy’s being a good little watch cat and is keeping a close eye on Laura.


Eloise Buttons

After a request in the comments for a close-up of my Eloise buttons I responded that I had tried to take a close-up but had a tough time getting a usable photo.

But then it occurred to me to pinch the photo from the eBay auction listing. Duh.

So here they are!


But I really liked this suggestion from Amy:

Have you tried using a tripod for taking close-up photos? I bought a really cheap one that does the job…my close-ups are much, much nicer now, i.e. they actually look like something ๐Ÿ˜‰

I do have a tripod. I also have a macro lens for close-ups. Most of time I am too lazy (or rushed) to actually haul them out.

Another problem is the season. This time of year it’s dark when I leave for work and getting dark when I get home, so natural light photos are pretty much out of the question.


KeLee asked:

I am curious, do you wear a sweater every day to work? I look at all the beautiful things you have knit over the years and can’t figure out how you could not. ๐Ÿ™‚

Well, thank you!

And the truth is that my sweaters get very little wear. I work in an office where regulating the heat is capricious at best. So I hesitate to wear a sweater a lot of the time. Yes, I know that one can actually remove a sweater should one get too warm, but that would require me to be wearing an outfit that’s work-appropriate with the sweater removed. I don’t consider a cotton turtleneck and pants or skirt (which is what I usually wear with sweaters) work-appropriate for me, without the accompanying sweater. Call me weird — you won’t be the first.

I actually have some sweaters that I’ve never worn, and many that have only been worn once or twice.

Though I did successfully wear Eloise yesterday. Woo-hoo!

I’m Not Trying to Start an Argument Here . . .

But leaving the house at 5:00am is so not the same as getting up at 5:30am.

I’m just saying.

Sadly, this horror that I call my morning routine is necessitated by the State of the Commute in the DC area. If I want to be able to park at the train station, I need to be there before 5:30am. However, if I actually want to be guaranteed to be able to sit down on the 45 minute train ride (and I do), I need to get on the 5:15am train.

Nuts, ain’t it?

No, I’m not asking for sympathy or advice . . . just responding to questions asked. I’m used to the routine. Sort of.

And I do get to leave the office at around 3pm on a good day.


  1. Wendy, I just wanted to say thanx for sending my BEAUTIFUL gift from the Critter Knitters Blanket-a-thon! I’ve never won anything like this before and it’s so exciting! (23 skeins of KOIGU readers….drool worthy, n’est ce pas? hehe)Thanks for sponsoring with Liz and thanks for everything you do!

  2. Wendy, your sweaters look great, and those beads are really perfect. I shy away from cardigans because I’m afraid I’ll never find any good buttons. I have to agree that I think you’re crazy for posting so early in the morning, but since its 6pm here, it works out great for me!

  3. Laura looks lovely – alliteration!
    Help please for us new knitters – how does one purl tbl. I’ve been reading it in a few patterns lately but I don’t think I’m getting it right.

  4. Sally, check this out:

    Courtesy of Google. Search for “purl through back loop” and you’ll find a number of resources explaining it.

  5. “But leaving the house at 5:00am is so not the same as getting up at 5:30am.”

    Yeah- I totally agree with you. Getting an extra hour sleep at that ungodly hour is heaven -no comparison that I can see. What the hell is wrong with people? You are asked a question, and you answer it. I don’t see you trying to compete with any of your readers about what time you wake up at – just telling us the facts.

    Have a good day.

  6. Hear hear! It’s very important to get a seat on the metro if you want to knit — lest wayward needles poke a fellow commuter (which sometimes is actually desired and deserved, but we’re a civilized bunch, ain’t we?!). You do look lovely in your wonderful sweater creations.

  7. Fortunately for me, when I do take Metro, I live at the end of the line so I can always get a seat. Depending on the time of day, however, I occasionally have to wait for a new train. And switching is tricky because if I don’t get a seat, I’m standing for four whole stops. Metro is an art. (And I usually drive because of the whole knee/foot thing plus other things that make me very unwilling to depend on Metro’s capriciousness.)

    Who in the world would think that waking up at 5:30 is even remotely akin to leaving the house at 5:00 (which means a rising time of 4:00 if not earlier).

  8. Communted from Olney to 17th and H for 7 years, the earlier you leave, the better your day. Helps to be an early person (my dad was a milkman, we ALL got up early). Love your sweaters, if you ever decide to eBay them (and I get down a few sizes) let us know, the line forms here!

  9. Laura is coming along beautifully! That butterscotch color is wonderful.

    On purling thru the back loop (TBL): I recently made Ebony, a Rowan capelet in Ribbon Twist. The pattern called for purling 2 tog TBL. Not easy to do (maybe US 15 needles didn’t help). I ended up using a crochet hook to pull the stitch through. Turned out nicely in the end.

    Purl one TBL is more manageable. Some yarns rib up in a way that looks sloppy to me–I sometimes work a twisted rib to correct this.

  10. HEy! You win — no way I was trying to say getting up at 5:30 was anywhere NEAR as “twisted” as actually leaving the house then. I am only glad you can mass tran. The only time I can rise and somewhat shine any earlier is during fishing season … and then I sleep in the car on the way to the ocean, so it doesn’t really count.

    THanks for the photo of the buttons. They are perfect! Oh and thanks again for the RS/WS comment … that has confused the hell out of me for the past year now .

    Kudos on Laura. Good work Lucy too! BEst, Diana

  11. The buttons are lovely! Thanks for the close-up photo.
    I’m a morning person and consider your schedule my ideal. It’s not twisted or odd to me. I’d be so much more productive if I could start my work day at 6. Unfortunately, my company doesn’t believe in flex time. Good news is they don’t believe in heat either so I’ll get lots of wear from my sweaters!

  12. No Lucy picture?! I assume she’s okay. Does your twisted ribbing slant?

  13. I am not a morning person. Leaving at 5 and getting up at 5:30 are exactly the same to me: IMPOSSIBLE. I am sound asleep at both of them. I don’t think even a yarn sale could get me up that early, much less my boring government job!

    Is there a reason you picked L for all your design names? Or did it all start with Lucy, and you just like alliteration? (You could have a whole series of pattern books: “The L Sweaters,” “The K Sweaters” etc.)

  14. *yawn* It’s almost half past nine in the morning here in Ohio, and I’d much rather be in bed with a pillow over my face and two comforters all the way to my neck. I can’t do the morning thing. It requires cutting into my evening time for getting to bed early.

    Phooey on you morning people. Here I’m complaining that getting to work at 7:30 (which I have never done successfully) is a chore. Lame! So lame. How does one become a morning person? I’ve never been successful. =( Help!

  15. Wendy I understand. People who do not live in a Real City do NOT understand :). I live outside Denver now, and when I hear people complain about the traffic there, I just shake my head and smile. Denver rush hour lasts a little over an hour and a half. It’s sort of bad in the evenings from about 4:30 to a little after 6:00 and they think that’s awful! I went thru Denver last Friday evening at 4:30 and it took me an hour instead of 30 minutes. I used to live outside DC (for 30+ years!) and when I tell people that the morning traffic jam begins about 4:30 AM and lasts until 11:00 AM and that the evening traffic jam begins about 2:30 PM and lasts until 8:00 PM they don’t believe me. My personal worst was a commute from Springfield to Stafford that took 6 HOURS! No accidents.. just a Friday night before a 3 day weekend.

  16. I *did* always secretly wonder if you wore all your wonderful creations. Now I feel less bad about the things I’ve made and worn only once. Laura is gorgeous!

  17. Oh, I’m another person who knits a lot but almost never wears her creation. Most people find it hard to believe.

  18. I love those buttons. They are perfect for Eloise! I need to keep an eye out for some pretty ones also.
    I have used the twisted rib in my Aran Tweedy Cardi that I should be finishing…guilt…guilt! I really like that stitch pattern. Can’t wait to see Laura! ๐Ÿ™‚

  19. Should I tell you you’re lucky? I’m a receptionist; no flex hours here! My trip from Silver Spring to Bethesda non-rush hour takes 20 minutes (rush hour 45 min.). Today two lanes of the beltway were closed; it took 1 hr. and 15 minutes to get to Bethesda. I wish I had public transportation close by. I’m sorry; but, I needed to vent and your topic today played right into it.

    Thank you Wendy!!

  20. Hi.

    Hope the ankle is better.

    ahhhh, it’s the little things in life! I wondered why the ribbing was so pretty on sis’s aran sweater…funny thing is when she bought it from a lil’ ol’ grey hair in a NZ shop she didn’t notice the 6 or so missing cable panels which were replaced with stockinette, and the use of elongated cables highlighting stockinette. It’s still beautiful, though.

  21. The “heat” blower to my office actually creates a wind chill in the winter. And I have nary a hand knit sweater to my name. Knitirony.

  22. Hi Wendy, your sweaters are always stunning!!!
    I know what you mean about government jobs… I work for FAA and start at 6am. The best part is getting out early enough to run errands… or in my case walk the dog!!! ๐Ÿ™‚

  23. Hi Wendy – thanks for the link – not one I’d come across before. I know, I know – Google is our friend!
    I think ptbl is just one of those tricky things that I’ll need to practice to get right – I felt better to see it described as *awkward*. BTW isn’t awkward and awkward word?

  24. Your latest sweater is beautiful as usual. I love your button choice too. What is your favorite way to do button holes? I have been knitting for years and mine are always too loose and look sloppy. Mary

  25. Wendy–How about a virtual fashion show of you in all of the sweaters you’ve never worn? That would be fantastic, I’m sure.

    Just a thought…


  26. oh GOD! To be up and ready to get to the Metro by 5:15, I would have to wake up at 4AM!!!! THE HORROR! Then again, I used to have to work the 5a-11a Sunday shift at work, AND I used to live north of Baltimore, so lesse… that meant getting up at uh….3am? yeah… FUN! That was only one day a week though, so I can’t complain. AND now I work the 10p-2a shift (among other things) so I’m rarely up before 11am these days ๐Ÿ˜‰

  27. ROFL – yeah – and neither is leaving the house at FOUR a.m. – what time we left on our last trip. 5 is plety bad though. I am SO not a morning person! You will not be seeing me awake at all at 5! … Purty twisted rib, and buttons. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  28. I can’t even contemplate leaving by 5 am; it makes my head hurt. Is that one of the reasons that you accomplish so much with your knitting? I’ve wondered how you finish so many things. As far as wearing them all — does a stamp collector have to lick all the stamps every day? I don’t think so! Lucy is gorgeous.
    Good knitting,

  29. Oooh! Love that twisted rib. I wonder if it would tighten up my ribbing (and even it out) if I did on the WS? I’m a loose knitter so I always have to go down several needle sizes in order to get a decent looking rib…