My current work in progress:

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


This is the Shawl Formula

It goes like this:
Cast on 5 stitches.
Row 1 (right side): Knit 1, yarn over, knit 3, yarn over, knit 1, yarn over. You now have 7 stitches on your needle.
Row 2 (and all wrong side rows): Purl across.
Row 3: Knit 1, yarn over, knit 1, yarn over, knit 3, yarn over, knit 1, yarn over, knit 1. You now have 11 stitches on your needle.
Row 5: Knit 1, yarn over, knit 3, yarn over, knit 3, yarn over, knit 3, yarn over, knit 1. You now have 15 stitches on your needle.
You can see where this is headed, right? You keep increasing one stitch each at the beginning and the end of the row, as well as one stitch on either side of the center three stitches. And you continue to knit until the shawl is as long as you’d like it to be. Or until you run out of yarn. Or until you pass out from the boredom of it all.

I referred to this as L-B’s shawl formula because I copied it from a shawl she made. She pointed out at the time that it is no doubt not an original idea, as it is so simple. So we’re not claiming to have invented it, ‘nkay?

I did wear my Kermit-skin scarf yesterday to work, with brown leather jacket and these extremely cool beaded pulse warmers my friend Johanne knit and sent me for Christmas. (I do not have pattern information for them, btw.)


I was stylin’!

My boss came in my office and saw the scarf draped over the back of my chair and exclaimed over it. I told her it was a dead Muppet. She only looked mildly alarmed. She does, after all, know what I am like.

I only hope the PETM* doesn’t come after me.

A Way Cool Book!

I got this as a birthday gift:


I love this book! The bags in it are all knit from Rowan yarns, are cute, and for the most part, are pretty easy. The best part is, I think, that the designs are a good jumping-off point for one to start thinking about alternate colorways and shapes and sizes.

Progress . . .

But just a little. Way, way tired last night, so I didn’t get far on the second sleeve for the Lucy top. Heck, I didn’t even spin last night.


But I did work on the handspun hat a bit more. And finished it.


Lucy News

Lucy and I have worked out an arrangement wherein she can play with her balloon under strict mommy supervision. She has accepted the situation.

My condo is on the air route from Ft. Belvoir to the Pentagon, so we occasionally have a plane or helicopter fly overhead. This week there has been a marked increase in air activity. Every single time she hears aircraft, Lucy runs to the window and looks out.

She can go from this:


to this:


in three seconds flat!

(*People for the Ethical Treatment of Muppets)


  1. OMG-that is too funny.
    Cats are like that though.
    I hope you have more energy soon though:)


  2. Isn’t it awful how work takes so much energy? Its supposed to finance the more fun parts of life but I find myself with little energy left to enjoy the fun parts ๐Ÿ™ Ah well, spring is but a few months away.

    Thanks for the shawl formula–I have some nice leftovers from several projects and I think I see a shawl in my near future.

  3. Yay! Thanks for posting the shawl formula!
    It’s -20C (-4F)where I am in Canada and I need to keep warm!

  4. No joke – at my undergrad, there was a class about the Muppets. It was called “Muppet Magic” and the final project was, you guessed it, to construct a muppet. I still kick myself that I didn’t take the class!

  5. Muffin gets very excited when she sees taxi cabs and other vehicles going down the street. I dare think she doesn’t get out much. Oh, that’s my fault–I don’t allow her outside. I hope your energy returns soon! It was a very wanna-sleep-in Tuesday.

  6. Thanks for the shawl formula! Can’t wait to try it out. A simple formula is good when one is in overworked mode at home and work, and need that fiber fix, but can’t manage tricky cables, etc.

    The hat is adorable, and the yarn looks beautiful made up into it! Plus the pic of you in the hat is just, well, adorable, too!

    Maybe the increased air activity that is interesting Lucy is due to her balloon. Maybe they are trying to locate the strange UFO activity that stops and starts as she plays with it! Naw, probably part of the stepped-up security with the upcoming inauguration. I’m glad we’re in the suburbs!

  7. Hey, I found a page that might tempt your fiber tastebuds:

    Can we all say WOW! The colors are simply droolworthy!

    Lucy never fails to be cute, does she? ๐Ÿ˜€ You’re such a good Mom to supervise her with her balloon. And thank you for posting the shawl formula!!

  8. Way cool of you to share! Thanks very much. The shawl turned out terrific!

  9. Lucy’s doing her part for national security! Guard kitty on duty. I feel safer already ๐Ÿ™‚ Loved your homespun shawl – very Pioneer chic. Charming hat. I wanna learn to spin, too!

  10. Lucy the watch cat…she’ll take care of things. That hat looks warm! What a feeling of accomplishment it must bring to spin and knit the wool.

  11. Wendy, that hat is uber cute and looks great on you!

    I have a dead muppet/astroturf scarf and it is the one thing that I get the most comments on. I don’t know if it’s their concern for the muppet involved or that they genuinely like the scarf, but it does draw attention.

  12. Wendy, I have a similar cat & puppy reaction at my house. We are near Ft Meade and sometimes have heli’s fly over.

    I noticed that Lucy is perched very near your Lenny!

    And thank you to L-B for letting you post the formula. I’m sure I will use it in the future! The handspun hat looks great! I just made a lace scarf as my first actual project from my own handspun. It’s deliriously addictive isn’t it? ๐Ÿ™‚

  13. Cats take their guard duty seriously when they want to. My mom’s cat, Mimi, loves the flashing lights and wo-wo of the sirens from the local fire trucks and ambulances. Of course, maybe she is just in love with the blue of the engines since she doesn’t react the same way to the medic units which are white with gold.

    Check your email for a message regarding AS yarns from me.

  14. *laugh* My cat does the same exact thing for fire engines and cop cars.

  15. FYI, The 2005 Knitting Pattern a Day calendar has a pattern for Beaded Pulse Warmers on day January 7th. I’m not sure that it is the pattern used for your pulse warmers or not – the beading pattern is defenitely different. But for your readers who are interested in obtaining a beaded pulse warmer pattern the calendar is one source. Heck, maybe the calendar is on sale now!

  16. that grey hat is too cute! great job. ๐Ÿ™‚

  17. Wendy, thanks for the formula. I’ve been holding on to a skein of Fiesta rayon boucle yarn that wants to be a simple (but beautiful)scarf and I think your formula just might make the scarf it’s been longing to be. The color is Clematis (Purple, bluish purple (periwinkle?), med light green, and med dark green). The stitch gauge is 5 sts= 1″ and 6 rows = 1″ on size 7 needles. I was thinking of using “8’s”, or would “10’s” be a prettier lace? Hmmmm…maybe better swatch…you think?

  18. When we lived an a busy avenue in Manhattan, my Persian kitty, Boo, would run to the window everytime a fire truck or a motorcycle went by. Sometimes on my way home I would see her from across the street and think “What a cute kitty, I wonder where’s the fire is?”

  19. PETM is only likely to get upset if the Muppet did not die a peaceful, natural death.
    By the way, in addition to their beauty, do the pulsewarmers actually help you to stay warm? The chronically cold want to know!

  20. Re:the shawl formula–this also works with thin yarns and you can add lacy patterns in the otherwise plain sections. With finer yarn, I would knit two or three edge stitches.

  21. The wrist warmer pattern is from “Perler pa Pulsen” (pearls on the pulse), a Norwegian book with a translation by Arnhild Hillesland (

  22. I LOVE the hat picture….you have some SERIOUSLY cute bangs there, girl!
    Sandy Poodle wants her very own dead muppet shawl now (sigh) Must obey the Princess and knit her one. Does Knit Happens have any yarn resembling either Gonzo or Animal? A trip next month may be on the calendar….