My current work in progress:

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


What’s On the Needles? Anything?

So . . . what is on the needles at the present time chez WendyKnits? Well, we know Deirdre is still on the needles.

Other than that . . . not much.

Technically not on the needles because I finished it over the weekend:


One sock. Surprise, surprise, surprise!

This sock is knitted from Great Adirondacks Yarn Co. sock yarn in the “black violet” colorway.

I did the leg in feather and fan to entertain myself. I am easily entertained.

Very nice sock yarn — my only complaint is that the dye came off on my fingers while I knit. I’ve not yet started the second sock, and I’m not sure I want to right now. I hate having stained fingers, and this dye is persistent — very, very hard to scrub off. If I do knit the other sock, you can bet your sweet bippy they will be washed before I wear ’em. Purple feet I do not need.

As I mentioned last week, I cast on some lace, using some handpainted wool laceweight. I put together a design for a rectangular lace stole, and knitted on it over the weekend, but did not like how it was looking. The handpaint, while lovely, is too variegated for what I was trying to do with it. So it has been ripped. R.I.P.

Maybe I should just suck it up and finish poor Deirdre?

So there you have it. Pretty much negative progress since the last time I showed you any knitting. But sometimes you have weekends like that, you know?

In an effort to distract you, here are some pretty flowers.


Ooh, flowers!


I took these photos at the Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden in Richmond, Virginia. L-B and I took a quick trip over there on Sunday morning.


My Lexie Bag

I transferred my stuff to my new Lexie bag this afternoon. A peek inside:


There’s plenty of space for everything. In fact, I put a small purse with my purse stuff inside as well.


Lucy has pointed out that if she curls up nice and small, she would fit too!



  1. Hi Wendy, lovely pictures from the Botanical Gardens. I want ask about the sock yarn you’re using that rubbed color onto your fingers. Is that something that makes you decide not to buy from that yarn company (or dyer) again? Have you noticed this being an indicator that the dye will fade much after washing? I’m only curious because when I dye yarn I’ve noticed that some colors can rub off while knitting but I thought maybe it was the type of dye I’m using. I haven’t found that it affects the fade factor in the yarns I have dyed, however. Your opinions as a consumer will be greatly appreciated.

  2. Raye, mother of the other Capricorn Wendy, in NYC says:

    OK…we caught you. What’s that light blue yarn (doesn’t look like the same color as the Deirdre WIP) in the bottom of the new Lexie bag??? H-mmmm…c’mon, ‘fess up!

  3. The red eye makes the cat look cross-eyed!

  4. Wow! Those flower pictures are fantastic!

  5. Love the new bag, very jealous!

  6. I know that toothpaste is a *great* aid to getting Kool-Aid stains off of hands (and mouths, for those who actually *drink* it!) and countertops. It might be worth a try if you’re still having issues getting this dye off your fingers.

  7. When that happens, I usually just soak the yarn in a citric acid solution or vinegar. The one time I didn’t do that, it kept bleeding with every wash which tells me it wasn’t “fixed” properly.

  8. The black violet sock is wonderful. So sorry to hear about the lace shawl not working out.

  9. I LOVE the color of the socks it’s a shame about the staining.

    Uhhh, when you’re tired of the knitting bag….

  10. The pink flowers look a lot like yarn.

  11. I’m absolutely in love with the purple! And the Lexie bag is to die for! I’m going to have to get a proper back like that.

    And as always, I want to grab Lucy and kiss her little nose!

  12. Love the sock. Sorry it’s so messy on your fingers…although there’s nothing wrong with purple feet if they’re in attractive socks!

  13. The sock looks fabulous – I love the colorway! Right now, I’m coveting the sock and your lovely bag… I’m so glad all your signings are going so well – they just seem to get bigger and bigger! ๐Ÿ™‚

  14. Miranda says:

    Hi, Wendy! The “Black Violet” colorway is so lucious and beautiful, I’m having a hard time believing anything bad could exist about it. Obviously, however, I am mistaken.

    Have you ever tried using an exfoliating scrub to get the dye stains out? I have had excellent results getting Sharpie and other supposedly “permanent” inks out of my skin by using a little bit.

    And, as long as I’m in the neighborhood, your toe-up sock tutorial on Knitty is excellent and the only reason I felt brave enough to try.

  15. Distracting us with exquisite botanical pics?… works!…….always something new, another way to see, to think…….you are a treat, especially after a long day……..thank you……and snuggles/tickles to Lucy!

  16. KayInNewMexico says:

    Dye that is not exhausted is a common problem, especially with handpainted yarn. If your LYS also has spinnng and dyeing supplies, ask them for “Jacquard Synthrapol” — Google it for more information and sources if you need to. This stuff is made especially for dye problems like yours. In your case, wash your finished socks in Synthrapol. It’s not just for dyes either — is wash about all my woolies in it! Read their label when you get some, but DO get some! Good luck!

  17. Elizabeth says:

    Wendy, it was great to meet you and L-B at Carodan on Saturday. I’ve finished your book and eagerly await a sequel. Also forgot to tell you that the old Columbia-Minerva Arans book is my favorite, too. I’ve made one of the sweaters twice in old-time not-so-bad acrylic and started another in some gorgeous Virginia wool that will unfortunately be ripped out and used for something else. Come back to Charlottesville!

  18. Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens (aka LGBG) is one of my favorite places in town, so I’m glad you got to visit there, and what a perfect time to go. I actually used to volunteer in their library, because I’m that much of a gardening geek. More recently, the lovely Bess ( met me there and graciously gave me drop spindle lesson as we sat in the conservatory. A little bit of heaven, for sure.

    Love, love, love the Lexie bag – methinks my fingers will need to do some shoppin’….

  19. My little brother got me a lexie barnes bag for my birthday and I adore it. They are so cute – aren’t they?

    I love the pattern on yours!

  20. your flower pictures are great but I really love the sock. That color is just wonderful – very me. Too bad the color comes off.

  21. I love the new bag! I was considering getting one and decided against it, but after seeing yours, I am reconsidering. I love the colorway of the socks– is the yarn soft? And by the by, to I spy a Dooney and Burke bag perchance sitting in your LB?

  22. What can ya do? Sometimes the knitting, it does go backwards. Happens to all of us =)

    Good luck with that dye! That’s crazy to have it stain like that. Can you wash the skein before you even knit with it? I would hope most of it would come out in the wash. Purple feet, no on needs.

  23. Oooh, pockets! I adore pockets. I am really going to have to give that bag some serious thought. Maybe Lucy could stow away in your bag and go to work with you. Although she’d probably only do it once. She’d soon find out that home is a lot nicer place to be.

  24. I was a little reluctant to buy your book, that is until I read more of your blog. I promptly purchased it from Amazon yesterday. Along with some other knitting books I’ve had my eye on.

    Sorry about the sock yarn, but you can us this as a reason to buy more yarn. (Nice excuse don’t you think?) Plus you could give the socks to someone you wanted to have purple feet. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  25. Gorgeous flower pictures. Hmmm, Lucy is awfully fluffy to fit into that bag I think, her fur might get stuck in the zipper.

  26. Lucy might very well fit in there, but think about how your yarn might smell after was closed up in there for a while. Not as amusing now, is it?

    I hate it when dyes come off on me, too. Even the ones that scrub off reasonably well.

  27. I just love your kittie…. beautiful!

  28. I looked at your flower pics and thought how AMAZING it was that you could knit AND have a super-human flower garden, and I was so jealous.

    Then I read that you didn’t grow the plants. I feel better…

  29. John Wise says:

    Hi Wendy,

    I had problems with black dye coming off on some wooden circs when I was knitting with a Great Adirondacks merino/mohair blend that caught my eye. I was told by a knitting friend that black dyes are notoriously unstable, and that is why many people choose to dry clean black garments (items stay truly “black” longer this way). I hope this helps. I love your blog, and read it regularly.