My current work in progress:

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


Pygora Goats!

This comment from Kate made me laugh:

Wendy, I’m sure that neither Lucy nor the landlord would mind if you got yourself a small herd of Pygora goats. A little plot of grass in the corner of the kitchen, a little fenced in area in the bathroom…taking them for walks of an evening. I have a vision of you walking them on totally charming knitted leads every evening after work!

Wouldn’t that be fun? However, while I don’t have a landlord, I’m quite sure that Lucy would object. Besides, I live in a condo on the tenth floor of a high-rise in the city, and I’m almost positive we are not zoned for goats. Even cute little ones.

But they do look like dear little things!

Here, just for grins, is the website for the Pygora Breeders Association.

Alrighty Then

Here’s a bigger photo of my current work in progress, which I have named the Woodland Shawl.


It will be a triangular shawl (my favorite type to wear), and the top section is a shetland leaf pattern. It will have a border of what will resemble (to some extent) trees, and then a knitted on edging.

This is the first time I’ve used Helen’s Laces yarn and I do love it. It’s 50/50 wool silk and it’s very soft, but has that wonderfully crunchy texture that only silk can give. I am now interested in trying Jaggerspun Zephyr to see it it’s similar. It crossed my mind to wonder if it’s the same yarn — anyone know?

Here’s a photo I snapped of Miss Lucy this morning. She is the Mighty Huntress, lording it over her prey: the Cursed Emery Board!



  1. Wow Wendy! Amazing progress on your new shawl. All this talk about goats reminds me of a co-worker who, a few years ago, did keep a goat in the yard of his house in Falls Church – definitely not zoned for livestock! He kept it because he didn’t want to cut his grass in the conventional way. He was popular in the neighborhood…

  2. I have both Helen’s Laces and Jaggerspun Zephyr in two different projects right now, and I’d be willing to bet money that they’re the same yarn–they feel the same to me and the yarn looks identical when you look closely at it (apart from color, natch). They’re both lovely yarns, and the Jaggerspun Zephyr is a pretty good deal–600-ish yards for $11 at my LYS.

  3. I’m just curious. I thought you lived in the ‘burbs and that’s why you had to get up so darned early to get a parking space. As a former resident of north Arlington and with way more curiosity than I need, I just thought I’d ask. What city are you in? Not DC cuz you could walk to work at that hour! Thanks. P.S. Can’t wait to see your book!

  4. I think that they are pretty muchg the same yarn. I have knit with both and can’t tell the difference by feel.

  5. Helen’s Lace is definitely JaggerSpun Zephyr – dyed in Lorna’s Laces own colourways. Nice stuff to knit with either way!

  6. Hi Wendy, I looked closely at your Helen’s laces and I’m wondering if it is single or two-ply. I have some single-ply silk merino in some thing between a lace and a fingering weight from Judy at smatterings and I’m looking for the right shawl. I feel that single ply gives a more rustic look, but it does have that crunch and sheen you describe. I like your idea of organic shapes in a what I’d call a more rustic, colorful shawl. Lovely, lovely.

  7. You are amazingly fast on that Woodland Shawl! It looks gorgeous, and I’m waiting with bated breath to witness the rest of its birth. One day I hope to create such beauty on the fly. (me=a new reader)

  8. Stephanie says:

    Wendy, Lucy is too cute! I’ve never seen my cat, Millie, attack an emery board. Maybe I should give her one and see what happens. Do you ever sleep? Your progress on your new shawl is amazing. The colors are beautiful. I am anxious to see the finished project — guess that will be tomorrow!

  9. Wow, Wow, Wow!!!! Yet another masterpiece in the making and so amasingly fast. You are amasing. Lucy is soooo cute Just love to see her in all your posts. We love Lucy.

  10. Those emery boards are sneaky. It’s best if Lucy watches that one every single minute, lest it escape and find others of its own kind, only to breed in the wild and make MORE. Ack!

    I’ve used both Zephyr and Helen’s lace in different projects. They drape similarly, but are definitely different yarns. Helen’s Lace has more twist and a different hand, although I can’t describe exactly in what way. I love them both, but Helen’s Lace is usually more expensive and you can buy Zephyr in ginormous cones from WEBS, which is very attractive when you’re a yarn zealot who stashes compulsively. Not that I do that, no.

  11. Woodland Shawl…that’s a nice name..:-)
    Is that the scene you wake up to every morning? Ooh..I’d like that. I’d take it anyday; Nightly Battles and all. ๐Ÿ™‚

  12. I think Zephyr and Helen’s Lace are the same…. I know Lorna’s Lace dyes Brown Sheep yarn, so I believe they do the same with Jaggerspun. I currently have two projects going on using both and they have the same twist and feel to me.

  13. Fab shawl! I’m curious: How do you wear triangular shawls? Do you wrap them casually around your shoulders and keep the ends loose, or do you wear them snug by tying the ends together? (I’m of the wrap variety.)

  14. Please don’t ask me why, but for some reason I thought Lucy was a guy.

  15. I’ve never used the Helen’s Lace (too pricey), but I am using and loving the Jaeger Zephyr.

    To offer an alternative source: if you’re not interested in buying it in cones, sells the Zephyr in 2 oz. pre-wound balls for $8/ball and has free shipping. That’s the best deal (outside of the cones) I’ve been able to find on the Internet.

  16. Wendy, your shawl looks lovely. I can’t wait to see the trees grow on it!!!

  17. Wendy, your shawl looks lovely. I can’t wait to see the trees grow on it!!!

  18. Lucy and her emery board just crack me up, that’s a very cute picture. Isn’t it horrible, the sound it makes when they chew on it? Can’t be good for the teeth I’m thinking, but they enjoy it, so..
    I’ve seen plenty of Pygoras here in Estes Park at their yearly fiber thing. They are adorable and very soft. But I am more of a sheep person myself.

  19. While I adore the colors of your new shawl, I’m wondering about using variegated yarn for lace projects. It looks like the changing colors sort of obliterate the effect of the lace patterning action going; or is it just that the lace pattern doesn’t show up well on the computer? I’ve never watched anyone up close working on variegated lace, that’s why I’m asking. It’s that overpowering effect on the computer that stops me from using vg yarn.

  20. Lucy is precious!!

  21. I’ve been wondering, when you’re designing your own shawls, how do you determine when to start the bottom border and/or knitted-on edging? I have a shawl on my back burner that I’m working up with a finite amount of yarn. I haven’t been working on it because I’m not sure how to figure out when to end the body and move on to the edging without running out of yarn.

    As a side question, when doing a knitted-on edging, do you just jump right in? Or is there a system to matching the edging to the shawl body? Do you just knit the edging till you get to the end of the body, not worrying about where you are in the edging pattern?

    Thanks. ๐Ÿ™‚

  22. My cat did not take to the emery board. How did Lucy first get interested? Shall I tie it on a string and tempt her?? Maybe Lucy could visit us and give lessons. Let me know her fees.
    knit on, latifa

  23. What is it about cats and emery boards! Mine are ready to pounce the moment I use one to start filing my nails.

    RE the P-goats – I like the goat of the month feature(!)

    Your shawl is loverly….

    Love to you know who…

  24. OK – a question for the queen of extreme blocking…

    Have you ever attempted to block (other than very gently) any of the rowanspun yarns?

    My instincts are saying that this probably isn’t the yarn for a lace project, but I love the feel and drape of the yarn.

    Do you have any pearls of wisdom?

  25. I think emery boards are a fixation amongst oriental cats. The only one of mine ficated on emery boards were my Siamese. The Wegies prefer mice, paper and plastic bags.