My current work in progress:

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


Still Life With Tote Bag

On my office windowsill this morning.


I Got Deli

I did finish the back of Deli last night, and embarked on the left side front. The back seemed interminable, and while I know it will take me as long to knit the two front pieces as the one back piece, psychologically it is so much more pleasing to me to knit two small pieces instead of one large one.


There is some shaping at the bottom front of the sweater — see?


Stinky Yarn?

Pam asked a question in the comments yesterday about what to do with stinky yarn:
I bought some nice colinette yarn from an e- bay auction for me to make up a poncho, got it for a nice price too, BUT the yarn has an odd smell, not cigarette smoke but odd, I DO have other colinette yarn ( did the throw kit once) but in that kit, no smell, of course.

My thoughts were that perhaps the person I purchased it from stored these yarns in a place that made the yarn pick up the unusual odor so I hung it outdoors today to air it out (its not wound yet,,,)

I was thinking maybe I could try washing it up ( I have had luck with simple shampoo on wool before) , so I thought tomorrow I would go for it,, hang it out again til it smells fresh and clean before I work with it.

Pam, I think hanging it outside to air out, as you are doing, is what I would try. In the comments, “Knitterlady” suggested Febreze (something I’ve never used, so I have no experience with it). Does anyone else have any suggestions for Pam?

Moving Day!

Both Claudia and Melanie have moved their blogs (but you probably already know that). Go say howdy to them in their new homes. Ladies, if I could show up on your virtual doorsteps with a casserole in hand, I would.

Lucy’s Heritage

There was a bit of confusion about the feline photos I posted yesterday. The first photo was indeed of Lucy, zonked out. The second photo, the lovely lass with the white mittens, is not Lucy. It is Shelley’s Miss Kitty. Also zonked out. Lucy does not have white paws.

In answer to questions about Lucy’s breed, as Andrea said in the comments, Lucy is a ragdoll. She is a seal colorpoint ragdoll. Miss Kitty is (I’m betting, though I don’t know) a mitted ragdoll. What’s the diff? There’s a good description of ragdoll “colorways” on this page at the Cat Fancier’s website.

Something creepy on that page, however, is the “Ads by Goooooogle” box that displays. The first ad that displayed when I accessed the page read:

Discount Ragdoll Kittens
New & used Ragdoll Kittens. aff Check out the huge
selection now!

That’s just bizarre.

Anyhow, the descriptions of Ragdoll characteristics and temperament fit Lucy exactly.

And Now for Something Completely Different

Who here would like to see a picture of Lucy dressed in a frilly pink outfit, having a tea party with some teddy bears?

Just kidding.


P.S. to KnittyKim:

“We’d better not risk another frontal assault. That rabbit’s dynamite!”


  1. I was looking forward to Lucy in a dress. I’ve dressed my kitten, Moey, up in a sweater, but she has yet to try out a dress.
    As for the stinky yarn, I would try washing it in something mild, like Eucalan.

  2. Adrianne says:

    Is the rabbit you are refering to from Monty Python and the Holy Grail?

  3. Adrianne says:

    I just read yesterday’s entry. It is from Monty Python.

  4. Regarding the “stinky” yarn … I have been successful in the past with this: put the yarn in a big ole’ plastic bag or storage bin with a laundry dryer sheet and keep it sealed tightly for a week or two. Worked for me with some smokey-smelling synthetic yarn from a yardsale. GOOD LUCK!
    (P.S. — that’s the best Lucy picture yet! Great lighting on her plush fur.)

  5. There’s a thread on this on Knitter’s Review Forums. They suggest using a mixture of water & clear vanilla.

  6. Have yarn and Ipod. Will travel. Or in my case, will knit instead of studying.

  7. I don’t think you could knit enough high-end Kitty Pi beds to redeem yourself if you were ever to dress Little Miss Lucy up in pink frou frou! =p

  8. I’ve had success with Febreze on yarn that had spent the evening in a very smoky coffehouseand consequently reeked. I hung everything in the shower, doused it and the next morning the smoke smell was gone. It did, however, smell like Febreze quite strongly so if you don’t like that smell, I wouldn’t recommend this method.

  9. To get rid of funky yarn odors, I toss the yarn in a zipper-top bag with a lavender sachet. If you don’t have lavender buds on hand, stuff some cotton balls in a small knitted bag and saturate the balls with lavender oil. Seal the bag and wait several days. This cured even the rather… peculiar scent of Mongolian camel wool. Not recommended for persons sensitive to floral scents, but delicious for those who enjoy lavender.

  10. Man, there is no blog traffic like Wendy blog traffic. Thank you for the mention! Your virtual casserole is much appreciated!

  11. That ad must be google trying to show off their search engine capabilities. That ad wasn’t there when I went to the site, but just to see, I searched ebay for used ragdoll cats and used ragdoll kittens, and there are none (thank goodness… you’re right… the way the ad is phrased is rather creepy).

  12. I love the new Rowan book. Deli is a very pretty cardi. She’s looking great!

  13. Mmmm. Casserole. I’ll return the dish in May.


  14. I was going to guess that the ebay ad was for actual dolls of the raggedy variety, shaped like cats, but I’m even happier that they didn’t actually have any.

  15. Hey if you think the discount kitties on ebay ad was weird, you should have seen the google ebay ad I got when I was looking up info on ovarian cancer. They got a nice little letter from me saying exactly how offensive I found their “buy discount ovarian cancer on ebay” ad.

  16. I use baking soda to reduce smells a lot. Normally, I leave it in an open dish but you can’t do that with yarn. Perhaps wrap some baking soda up in a fine cloth or mesh (possibly old pantyhose) and put it in a big ziplock/plastic container with the yarn. You could put all the yarn in an airtight bin and set a bowl of baking soda on top or doughnut shape the yarn and stick the bowl in the center. Be careful not to spill, though. I’d guess that knitting with baking soda covered yarn wouldn’t be so fun.

    But, note, this works for the scariest of fridges and funkiest of smelly clothing. I think this would get rid of that weird smell for sure.

    There’s also some kind of volcanic rock you can buy at home organization stores that works fairly well for smelly laundry.

  17. For yarn smells — get a big tub of scented, clumping cat litter. Bury it in that stuff for a few days, then just take it out and brush it off. Works a treat.

  18. Laughing at the thought of anyone trying to dress Lucy up-that picture made me laugh out loud! I never knew there was such a breed as ragdoll. She’s precious.

  19. For the yarn smell–place yarn in a plastic zipper bag with about 1/3 bar Dial soap wrapped in a paper towel. Probably any other kind of soap would work just as well.

  20. giggle, giggle, oh sorry Lucy, I’m, uh, laughing WITH you sweetie.

  21. jacquelyn says:

    Interesting . . and a bit scarry . . to see that ragdolls won’t defend themselves. Obviously ideal house cat temperament, luckily. No wonder Lucy was such a mess when you first met her – she probably wasn’t activley mistreated but probably just “let out” – OUCH!

    Jacquelyn – now in Scotland for 2 yrs from Oz! (w/o my needles or patterns) and contemplating a stash-threatening trip to Shetland.

  22. Susan Maurer says:

    Tee hee. Yes, I’m laughing WITH you, too, Lucy. Better not bring any pink yarn home for awhile though, Wendy. Just to be safe. Deli’s looking SMASHING! Even though it’s just plain st st, I’ll bet it’s a cardigan that gets lots of use. (Hopefully, not by Miss Lucy. She is a Miss, isn’t she? Or is that “Ms.”? Just so she’s not amiss…. ) And I’ll betcha that rarebit in the new W&G was in some small way influenced by Monty Python. Isn’t the creator of W&G from England?

  23. Susan Maurer says:

    Hey, that’s interesting! I put the word “groan” in little carrot brackets (a la html coding style) after my sad sad “amiss” pun (two-thirds of a pun, y’know: P-U, as in “P-U stinky”), but the groan in carrots didn’t show up! Must be an html thing… or the ides of March…

  24. About the peeee-u … smelly yarn:
    as the long-time mom of both dogs and cats, I can attest to the magical qualities of “Nature’s Miracle.” It’s an enzyme liquid used for neutralizing and eliminating nasty (you can just imagine!!) odors. I’d dilute it (try 1/4 cup to a sinkful of cool water) and let that stinky yarn soak for an hour.
    Look for Nature’s Miracle in a pet supply store (or online). I’ve also used Febreze to get odors out of fabric, but the lingering Febreze smell is pretty strong!

  25. I hate the way Febreze smells. You can make your own – fill a spray bottle with half water, half cheap vodka. Really. (Read the ingredients in Febreze – it’s water, grain alcohol, and fragrance.) Works like a charm, and no disgusting perfume odor.

  26. Stinky Yarn ~
    Try dryer sheet, panty hose bag, dryer on air only, no heat.

    Put the yarn and dryer sheet in one of those zipper mesh bags and put it in the dryer and run for like 5 mins at a time on AIR ONLY – no heat.

    Hope this de-funks it.
    BTW – beware of ebay – stinky yarn STINKS

  27. Claudia Warner says:

    Too funny. I can not imagine Lucy tolerating being put into a pink dress!

    As a side note, Miss Kitty is a seal point mitted Ragdoll.

  28. I’ve used the sort of charcoal (carbon) that goes in the bottom of fish tanks to take the smell out of a smoke-filled book; it might work for yarn as well. You can get it at any pet-supply store. Put it in a small ziploc bag, making sure it’s sealed tightly so you don’t get the carbon on your yarn. Put the small ziploc back and the yarn in a large ziploc bag, and leave it for a week or so.

  29. I like the smell of lavender and find that it works for smells. Sonce I grow my own lavender, I know that it is organic. Febreze smells too strong for me plus you are adding chemicals to the yarn. Air it out for a few days and than store with some organic lavender. And I love Lucy’s look of outrage that you would even suggest putting her in a dress.

  30. OK…I read yesterday’s post and refrained from the MP quotes…now you’ve started it Wendy…That’s the most foul, cruel, and bad-tempered rodent you ever set eyes on!…I soiled my armor I was so scared!

    Hope to see you at late night tonight!

  31. yeah ummm it sure looks like Lucy will tell you what she thinks of that idea in a second…

  32. Febreeze has a *lot* of perfume. I’d try doing something with baking soda.

  33. Lucy in frilly pink having tea with teddies would just be so *wrong*. I’m afraid to admit to you (and especially to Lucy) that I did imagine it, just for a second there!

  34. The ebay affiliates that buy ads on google have some strange algorithms… Boingboing had a post about this a few months ago ( )… it’s kind of funny to see what shows up.

  35. Anne Marie says:

    Beware of Febreze! I ordered a large stash of yarn from eBay. When it arrived, the smell was overpoweringly, cloyingly sweet. I checked in for suggestions at the Knitter’s Forum and someone suggested Febreze. But it was so bad that I decided to contact the eBay Seller. It turns out that she was listing it for an elderly neighbor. The neighbor had sprayed the yarn with Febreze and sealed it in ziplock bags. So, instead of being the solution, Febreze was the problem! (The Seller apologized and refunded my payment – what a dear!) But I would never spray that product on anything I had to be in the same room with, much less touch!

  36. On the stinky yarn, I’d try a gentle (and un-scented) bath first, but then I’d try the coffee trick. Put some dry coffee grounds (fresh from the can, not used, not instant coffee crystals) in a container (i.e., 1 cup of coffee grounds in the bottom of a paper grocery bag), put in the yarn, and close the container for a couple of days. Good luck!

  37. Bizarre ebay ad, yes. I had one the other day, when I was trying to explain to a friend who Ryan White was, because she didn’t remember him, so I googled, and on the sidebar was “All things Ryan White at eBay!”