My current work in progress:

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


Off to a Great Start!

Wow! We are off to a great start in the Heifer International drive — check out the amount donated so far over in the sidebar. I’ll be updating that number at least once a day. Also, keep checking the prize page — I added a couple of new prizes this morning.

Betty J made an excellent point in the comments:

Don’t forget that many employers match donations made by their employees. Please remind your readers to check with the folks they work for to see if they can make their donation go twice as far.

Thank you so much for your extremely generous donations so far!

I had to explain to Lucy, though, that nobody was going to buy her a flock of chicks. She’s sulking.


I’ve got a couple of other thank yous to say as well, before we get down to knitting talk.

Thank you to the anonymous gifter who arranged to have this sent to me:


It’s a cat shawl pin from Designs by Romi. I love it!

And I got this in the mail the other day:


Red and white gifts from Brigitte!

Brigitte had a blog contest a little while ago, asking people to suggest a name for her red and white Hisdal sweater. She chose my suggestion of “Dalarna” and sent me a red and white package in thanks.

Red (Jaggerspun Zephyr in “ruby”) and white (alpaca) yarn, and red and white candy. Even some white tea!

The Green and Black dark chocolate bar is not red or white, but that is something I can easily overlook. Hee hee! Thanks, Brigitte!

Current Knitting

So I started a new project at the end of last week, and Brigitte correctly identified it the other day from the tiny corner I showed in my Sunday blog entry. (That girl’s got a good eye for the Starmore knits!)


It’s Starmore’s Elizabeth I from the book Tudor Roses.

I am making mine from Daletta fingering weight wool in the “putty” colorway. I ordered the Daletta from my favorite Dale vendor, Bea Ellis.

I got gauge with the suggested needle size, 3.0mm. I’m using a Knitpicks circular and finding the smoothness and pointy-ness just right.

This is a cool design — while it is a lot of knitting in fingering weight wool, there’s always something interesting going on so you don’t get bored.

You start with a pretty textured edging.


Then you use short rows to created the gently curve at the bottom of the sweater.

You use decreases and increases on each side of one twisted sttich to create the body shaping.

And there is a wicked-cool textured inset.

The back and the front are identical in this sweater. I’ll call this the back. ๐Ÿ™‚

By the way, L-B and I were at Graves Mountain, in Madison County, Virginia, this past weekend. The weather was very cold but clear, and the autumn colors were beautiful. We had booked a cabin about 500 yards from the main lodge, accessible by a tiny winding road through the woods. I insisted that we drive down to the lodge for meals. I think L-B was secretly thinking I was being a baby, but on Saturday night we surprised a very large black bear behind the lodge — and she was just as glad as I that we were in her truck!

The bear had come down to get his dinner out of the lodge dumpster, but when he saw us, he stood up and said: “Get . . . in . . . my . . . belly!”

We did not comply.


  1. Wow I’ll need to look into some Starmore patterns. That is going to be gorgeous.

  2. Well, I’m certainly glad that you didn’t comply with Mr. Bear. The sweater looks gorgeous!

  3. Great work on the Heifer project and the sweater. Some day when I have time to actually pay attention to my knitting I hope to give things like that a spin.

    Right now I need to talk with my kids about how much they want to have Santa donate in their names to the Heifer Project. We’ve given them (Heifer) money many times through church but this year I had decided that the kids would acknowledge their many blessings and make this holiday season one of giving rather than so much getting. I’d already identified Heifer for them since kids can connect with animals.

    Thank you for doing this.

  4. Ooooh, it’s so pretty!

  5. WENDY! Now, you know, that bear stood up before he ambled off, and he called himself DEAD SEXY, baby. tee hee. looked sorta like…my husband? naw. say it ain’t so. My husband does sorta snore like a bear, though. (he’ll be so glad that I posted this)

    You have made an amazing boatload of progress on that sweater since Saturday night. I am impressed, oh thou queen of lovely handknits.

    Love your blog, babe.

  6. roflmao He was that big huh?

    The sweater looks lovely as always.

  7. My family & I have spent a few pleasant weekends at Graves Mtn Lodge back when we lived in VA. I can just smell the fresh air from here! Did you have your camera for a picture of the bear? Speaking as a representative of your blog readers, we’d love to see it!

  8. Oh, I just loooove Elizabeth I, she’s been on my wish list for several years. But I’ve not succeeded in getting hold of the book. My local library here in Norway couldn’t help either ๐Ÿ™ Do you know where it’s for sale?

  9. Elizabeth I looks great. I can’t wait to see it finished.

    And in the small world department, I happen to be wearing a new pin by Romi today! It’s copper like yours, but a heart shape w/the spiral inside. I got it at Stitches East this weekend, and it’s holding closed my DB Lara. ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. Woohooo!! Congratulations on such an impressive donation total so far! You have the BEST blog readers! ๐Ÿ™‚

  11. Whoa. A Starmore pattern I knit before Wendy did. I think I need to jot this date down somewhere. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  12. oooh, let us know how that tea tastes. i have been looking at those new pyramid teas.

  13. Green & Black may not be Red & White, but they are the complementary colors of Red & White. (As in, if you took a color photo on actual film of something that was red & white, the negative would show it as green & black.)

    Scary encounter with the bear, that. You just never know with bears. You were lucky.

  14. No chicks for Lucy!? Will she recover from the devastation!?

  15. Molly-dog and Breezeway the Cat share in Lucy’s devestation. Molly, being a Border Collie, doesn’t so much want to eat the little chickies as herd them into someone’s mouth. Although, she’s caught a few birds so you never know.

    I love Eliz. 1. Gorgeous pattern. The inset is amazing.

  16. On Nov. 1, you posted a picture of Lucy lying on the freshly washed handknit socks. Can you tell me the yarn you used in the 2nd picture? It has greens and burgandys.


  17. Tell Lucy she should just be glad no one’s buying her bees!

    That shawl pin is so lovely!

  18. That is a great shawl pin and it seems to be the perfect gift for you. I love the new sweater you’re working on the textures are beautiful.

    You crack me up about the bear belly thing.

  19. Just beautiful! {{Lucy}}

  20. Elizabeth I is one of my favorite Starmore patterns. I can’t wait to see how yours turns out.

  21. I think any bear seen in the wild at anything like a near distance is by definition HUGE. Sure seems that way.

    Poor Lucy. No chicks for her. Too bad Heifer doesn’t offer mice. I’m sure your blog readers would cough up for mice for Lucy.

  22. Glad you didn’t get eaten, because I want you to finish that pretty sweater!

  23. just out of curiosity how did you come up with the name for Brigitte’s sweater? Is there a significance to the name?

  24. Glad you insisted on the truck! Someone said wearing bells on your ankles keeps bears away, however I’d stay with the truck too. Love the Starmore!

  25. love the new shawl pin ๐Ÿ™‚ and elizabeth is one of my favorite designs, it looks great!

  26. I’m looking forward to seeing how Elizabeth I turns out for you. I managed to borrow some of the AS patterns I don’t have though interlibrary loans, and I bought the yarn to do it. (I selected Jo Sharp’s alpaca silk georgette from WEBS in ecru, which seems close in yardage to Daletta. I hope it has enough stitch definition for the pattern.)

    The shawl pin is lovely.

  27. Yes,he was the largest black bear of several I’ve seen in the wild. Graves Mt. Lodge must be feeding him well! No,I didn’t think Wendy was being a baby.I’m just the more outdoorsy one and more game for hiking the trails.But,I will no longer argue the point of driving from cabin to lodge after dark! Now,Wendy has that in writing! ๐Ÿ˜‰

  28. I definitely plan to donate to Heifer. My MIL is a teacher in Annapolis, MD, and every year she asks her students (parents) to make a contribution to Heifer, instead of giving her Christmas/Chanukah gifts. I love that my 20, 30, 50 bucks that would otherwise buy yarn to sit in my stash for who knows how long, can be used to buy goats, ducks or chicks for a family in need. Thank you for reminding me of Heifer. Okay, off to make my donation now!

  29. Oh, and I TOTALLY planned to knit Elizabeth I way before your post…just to set the record straight *wink*.

  30. Oh my. Been wanting to knit something from Daletta… copy of Tudor Roses has been calling to me…got some extra bucks in my pocket…Oh my….This feels like the beginning of a slippery slope…..Of course, I’ll still be knitting my Eliz I when Wendy will be wearing hers!

  31. Simple beauty. I really love it.

  32. Oh, I’m so glad you liked the goodies!

    (And the Starmore thing? Yeah, I’m just weird like that…I can’t remember what I had for dinner, but I can spot her peeries a mile away.)


  33. Hi Wendy and Sweet Lucy:

    I swear you must be one of the fastest knitters! How do you get all this knitting done and work too!!! You must not sleep I swear.

    Elizabeth I is gorgeous.

    I loved your cat shawl pin so much that I went straight to and ordered one for myself. I made a beautiful shawl for myself about a year ago and don’t wear it that often due to it slipping off my shoulders – – the pin will be perfect for keeping it closed.

    Wendy T.

  34. That is a beautiful sweater pattern. Oooh la la.

    And, awesome you have already raised so much for Heifer International. My goodness, your readers rock.

    Our church donates to them each year. It is such a unique opportunity for giving that makes a real difference.

    Best to you, Lucy, and the Lucy daddy.


  35. Ann in CT says:

    Oh that sweater is georgous. And it would look really good on me.
    DH and his groomsmen wore kilts at our wedding. I heard that phrase many times on our special day.

  36. Not only are Black & green complimentary to red & white, but if you stair at a black and green image for thirty seconds, then look at white space (white wall, white piece of paper), you see the image in red and white!

    I used to do a graphic demonstration of this with the US flag in black, greeen, and orange (for the blue). Very cool fun.


  37. And here we learn that Jenny can type and think faster than she can spell. STARE, thank you very much.

  38. Love the kitty pin, love the red and white package. I think I would overlook the colours of the chocolate bar too.

    Your Starmore pattern is beautiful!

  39. Wendy, I see you do toes-up socks. Try as I might, I can never get the final rows of the cuff to be loose enough. What method do you use?


  40. Glad you didn’t comply with the bears request. I would have thought you were a big baby too, but boy you were right on the money.

    Several years back we went camping in Tennessee, we had a raccoon(s) unzip our Jeep Wrangler and get in and eat our food we put in there for safe keeping. Us city folk, sometimes forget the intelligence of nature. Okay, I’m not really city folk, when you grow up in Iowa, St. Louis seems like a huge city. It’s not.

  41. I am SOOOO excited to see you knit up the Elizabeth I sweater….I own that Tudor Roses book, and that particular pattern has been whispering my name for a while…..of course, I am a wee bit scared about the 3.0mm needles…..I would like to finish it in my lifetime once I actually commit….

  42. Love the Eliz I. Where can I find the Tudor Roses book? It’s going for $115 on and I’d rather find a less expensive copy.