My current work in progress:

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


Rhapsody in Silk

Yeah, whaddya gonna do? You’ve got ArtYarns Silk Rhapsody lying around, along with a pattern that will showcase it nicely.

Silk Rhapsody. It’s available for sale in lots of places — I see that Purl has it for sale online here.

A couple of you asked about the itch factor because of the mohair content. Please note that I am not overly sensitive to itchiness in yarn, so your mileage may vary. But I find it very non-itchy. There’s more silk than mohair in the yarn, and the silk makes it very soft. And very, very pleasurable to knit.

How pleasurable? I finished the shawl.


Not really an amazing feat, because it is worsted weight and I knit it on 5mm needles. It’s not a large shawl, either. And apart from a bit of sock knitting on Saturday, I abandoned all other knitting to work on it. It even went to the office with me today, so I could knit it on the train and at lunch.

Of course, I had the problem of trying to decide how many repeats I could knit before starting the edging. I had 520 yards of yarn and I, of course, wanted to use as much as possible. The shawl gets 4 stitches wider on each right side row, and there are 15 edging rows before you bind off.


As it happens, I had to knock 4 rows off the edging in order to have enough yarn to finish.


Rosewood Circulars

Anne asked:
With Holz & Stein nearly impossible to find here, have you tried Colonial circulars?

I’ve not yet tried the Colonial circulars, but no doubt I will soon. Last Friday, my Needle Enabler (the one who enabled me into Holz & Stein needles in the first place) emailed me to tell me how wonderful the Colonial circulars are. So really, it’s just a matter of time.

Lucy Sez


This shawl ain’t half bad.


  1. DOn’t you just love that pattern?

    Once I got the hang of it, it was an easy pattern to follow.

    Looks beautiful.

  2. It’s beautiful. And Lucy looks beatiful lying on it.

  3. Beautiful!! I don’t see your colorway on the Purl site. No longer available?

  4. Wendy that is stunning! And worsted or not, it would have taken me a month. Easily. You are just amazing. It looks so soft. Obviously if Miss Lucy was rubbin’ all over it.

    I hope your back is better today.

  5. Gorgeous! The pattern and the color are amazing.

  6. The shawl looks so beautiful! I’ve been thinking about making that shawl and you may have inspired me to do it… ๐Ÿ˜‰

  7. Y’know, I think a lot of the stuff you make is really beautiful. Amazingly fast (for you) to knit and comes out faboo with the yarns you pick.

    But this? THIS IS JUST PLAIN INCREDIBLE. Gorgeous.

    I’m such a lacewhore. Anything in lace makes me writhe a little. And now…now I’m going to need silk rhapsody. You’re bad for my wallet, girl.

  8. Just gorgeous! And such a quick knit that it never even made it into your WIP list on the sidebar. ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. Beautiful shawl. I just finished my first shawl and I am hooked. I’m on the lookout for another one to make.

  10. Your new shawl is gorgeous, love the color.
    Purl is one of my favorite LYS, will you shop there this weekend? I can’t wait for your book signing this Sunday!!!

  11. The shawl is beautiful!

  12. lovely shawl and yarn!! I googled “colonial circular needles” and discovered they cost – cough, cough, gag – a whopping $38! can’t imagine why they are so high, but I could buy a bunch of yarn for that. I can’t imagine that *anything* would be more sublime than ebony Holz & Stein, sigh………..

  13. needle enabler says:

    beautiful shawl – Just wait until you try those colonials – you’ll have to tell me how you really like them… the clock is ticking until you get a chance to do so LIVE … bwahahaha ๐Ÿ˜‰

  14. The shawl is divine. I keep lusting after the Rhapsody–your project is inspiring! I loved the Lantern Moon rosewood circulars I tried out at TNNA….

  15. CatBookMom says:

    520 yards of ArtYarns Silk Rhapsody, shawl started Sunday, finished Monday – what, 24 hours total passing by?? Sometimes, if it weren’t for Lucy, I’d skip the daily blog-reading, just because I’m so awed – and intimidated! – by your knitting speed.

    Are you heading to the Left Coast, say LA, to sign your book? Please? Pretty please? I’ll bring flaked bonita for Lucy….

  16. Amazing shawl! So pretty!

  17. Wow that’s beautiful. Hope your back is feeling better.

  18. Stunning! just stunning.

    I’ve seen and touched the Colonial needles. Be prepared to start collecting them. Definitely part of my Yarn Den plan-of-the-future. Yarn and knitting accessories are not an obession if they are displayed and considered a collection.

  19. Gorgeous shawl! It came out beautifully. As for the rosewood Colonials, I have 2 sets of their DPNs and I REALLY like them.
    Best to Lucy,

  20. That pattern is gorgeous! It’s amazing how delicate it looks, yet, rugged enough for Lucy.

  21. Judy in MN says:

    That does it! You are not human…nobody can knit AND BLOCK a shawl that quickly. Fess up…you have a room full of little knitting elves who work all night and all day to churn out those beauties, don’t you! C’mon, you know you do! ๐Ÿ™‚

    still working on the same @(#$)(&# sock and Pi shawl she’s been working on for…oh….forever.

  22. Just FYI, your wonderful book is available at the bookstore in the booming metropolis of Columbus, Indiana. That’s pretty cool considering that this is the bookstore that carries about 3 knitting books at a time. Yours is one of them! The harlot’s latest book is there too.

    Way to stuff the book full of pictures of all your friends! I love it. That’s just what I’d do if it was me. ๐Ÿ™‚

  23. Mohair, cat hair, it’s all good isn’t it! Great job on the shawl. I am impressed at your speed!

  24. Yummy shawl – yummy yarn – lovely colorway! I spent several hours one evening trying to find a U.S. vendor for H&S circs to no avail. Maybe the Colonial will be more U.S. buyer friendly no matter the price! I haven’t searched for them yet but I’m *all for* buying good tools that last forever. If you get a size that you will use often, what’s $38? If we think of it in a “price per knitted item” way it’s no different than buying a new pair of cheap circs for each project. And seriously I can’t get *a lot* of yarn for $38 (not the kind I want to buy anyway).

  25. Altho knits like Inishmore and St. Brigid give one a huge sense of acomplishment, there is something to be said for the quick, down and dirty pretties that give you that “instant” high! It’s glorious Wendy ๐Ÿ™‚

  26. Marti J. says:

    Learning to knit lace got me back to knitting after about a 3-decade absence (yeah, I’m that old), and this shawl is proof of why I love it so much! The colors are fantastic, and the stitch looks really easy to master (my favorite kind). Congrats on such a great job! And hello to Lucy!

  27. Wendy,
    just fyi, as I have been led, as a late comer by you, tothe HS needles, which, now can’t get.
    I tried the colonials, very nice..But another shop, told me that the pony rosewoods circs were the exact same thing, but a bit cheaper. and I ordered a pair, and they are. so I believe they are. compared to $40.00 per circular,to 24.95, you may want to let the other knitter about this.
    Though if grafton would only make smaller sizes, his are wonderful, w/the same join as the HS needles. I got a size us8 at the festival and love them. but I rarely knit w/8’s. Im a loose knitter to begin with..

  28. Suzanne says:

    As usual I am astounded by your speed! The shawl looks glorious. I finally caught onto to Knitcast podcasts last week (a little late, I know), and I heard your voice for the first time. It was fun to put a voice with your wonderful writing. Do you think you will do another podcast any time soon, now that your book is out?

  29. Now this is the reason I am so inspired by you! Instead of being dismayed/discouraged by your lightning fast knitting speed-I am so motivated to get mine up. I just need more practice, right? And you also(somehow)keep me more focused on what’s on the needles. I want a FO, too!

  30. lovely…the shawl is lovely!

  31. Betty J says:

    Judy, I have often pictured Wendy’s Elves knitting through the night! Just like in that story, The Elves and the Shoemaker, I think it is. Could it be Lucy and her friends kitty knitting their way through the night?!

    Wendy, the shawl is absolutely beautiful! So inspiring. I finally bought your book, gift for myself for mother’s day, and thoroughly enjoyed it. I have been practicing your toe-up sock pattern before I start the real thing and have a question. When you begin the second half of the sock, the pattern says to work across to the first unworked, wrapped stitch and knit them together. Then wrap the next stitch and turn. I think I am with you to this point. Now, when you turn, it says to slip the first double-wrapped stitch and purl across. Is the stitch you slip the one you just knit together with it’s wrap? And, if so, how did it get double-wrapped? I tried slipping that stitch and it left a little bar between the wrapping of the second stitch in the first direction and the purling of the first stitch on the way back. I just know that when I finally get this, it will be one of those, “I am SO stupid!” moments. But it takes awhile to wrap my brain around things. (No pun intended.) Thanks for your help and thanks for sharing all of your knowledge, creativity and beautiful work. You rock!

  32. Betty J says:

    AHA! I think I get it! You don’t slip the stitch back that you just double-wrapped until you turn the work. Then it becomes the first stitch you slip. Can you see the lightbulb shining?! I slip the stitch back before turning the work or I get confused. It looks like it works, or is that making a problem I can’t see yet?

    Doncha just hate it when you post a question that has you stumped forever and then as soon as you hit the “Post” button, the answer comes to you?!

  33. Beautiful beautiful shawl – Bravo! You are such an inspiration. I’ll check that pattern out for my adventures in lace. Love to Lucy and Best to You.

  34. Ok, I’ve asked others who have knitted shawls and no one will answer me. Maybe you will.
    WHAT DO YOU DO WITH IT? I’ve seen people use them for drapery, as a decoration. Now, given, the knitted shawls are gorgeous. Yours is gorgeous, but however much I’d like to knit up a gorgeous shawl, I’m not doing all that just to drape it over a chair for drama. My time could be better spent on socks, a Kitty Pi, felted clogs, a new cardigan! That’s my dilemna. I WANT to knit a shawl because they are gorgeous but I don’t know when or where I’d wear it. Certainly not with jeans and a t-shirt. The shawl is too pretty for that. Not for a cool day out at…Seaworld or Disney. And with all the lace, is it even warm? A lace shawl like that would only really do justice to a evening gown…maybe a Ren Faire if you’re dressed in garb. But real life? When would you use a lace shawl? Maybe it’s just too hot in Florida for me to grasp the concept.

  35. Wait…you knit a lace shawl in four days?

    I hate you. I mean, I love you, but I hate you.

  36. Gorgeous shawl and you went right ahead and sped through that project. I’ll have to check out the Colonial circulars – I haven’t seen them yet.

  37. How are you so fast???? I am still knitting this shawl and it’s been almost 2 months and I’m no where near complete.

    Do you count the stitches every knit row? I tend to do that so that I don’t mess up, but it takes forever.

  38. Oh, that’s lovely, lovely, lovely. Such soft colors… really, an excellent choice.