My current work in progress:

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


Archives for December 2006

Just Popping In . . .

. . . to say:

I finished the Bohus yoke! Alert the media!


Lucy seems singularly unimpressed, though.


Thank you all for weighing in on the Knit From Your Stash issue. I think it’s safe to say we can each do as we please about this without fear of single-handedly putting anyone out of business.

And do look, if you please, at the Heifer total. It is astounding what we can do collectively!

Let’s Clear Something Up, Shall We?

Yesterday I decided not to talk about this on my blog, but other people keep bringing it up to me in comments and emails, so it’s time to clear the air once and for all about my “Knit From Your Stash 2007” project.

There are a few people who have expressed to me via email (and one in a comment) that they think this will ruin some yarn shops. One LYS owner (who I do not know or ever bought anything from) posted on her personal blog that if I were to do this, no one would buy yarn for 9 months and LYSs would go out of business and there would be “blood on her (my) hands.”

Let’s review, shall we?

If you go back and read my original entry about this, on December 14, you’ll see that I mention it as something L-B and I proposed to do, and at the end of listing our rules I mentioned that anyone who wanted to join us was welcome to do so.

I got a surprisingly large number of comments from people who said that they had been thinking about doing the same thing, or were already doing so. A lot of people asked me about the “rules.”

So in my next blog entry, on December 16 I encouraged people who were interested in knitting from their stash to make up their own guidelines with their own exceptions. To do what worked best for them. Not to do anything too drastic that would be hard to stick to. I mentioned “Knit From Your Stash” briefly in the next blog entry on the 17th, reiterating that people should make their own rules for what they plan to do and talk about it on their own blogs should they have them. I said I have no plans to start a blog or knit-along in conjunction with this.

And that’s the last I mentioned it on my blog, apart from something about sock yarn not counting!

The concept of a yarn diet is not new, and I did not originate it. I’ve seen “Yarn Diet” buttons on blogs for several years.

The bottom line? This is my idea for myself that I posted on my personal blog. I’m not advocating that people stop buying yarn altogether and put yarn shops out of business. I have a large stash of yarn, and it is my intent to use some of it up in 2007, with the exceptions that I have allowed myself.

If you look at my rules, you’ll see what I am proposing to do is to only buy yarn that I need for 9 months — and even then allowing myself the indulgence of buying sock yarn and spinning fiber whenever I want. If a business is going to fail because people are only buying what they need, well, there’s something wrong with that. Of the blogs I’ve read where people are proposing on knit from their stashes, not once have I read that anyone is planning on not acquiring any yarn for the period of time they set themselves.

Further, only a fraction of the knitters in the world read knitting blogs, and only a fraction of knitting blog readers read my blog. And only a fraction of those readers are planning on cutting down on their spending. So I don’t think yarn shop owners really have anything to worry about here.

The reason I posted about this in the first place was to put in writing what I plan to do — doing so makes it easier for me to stick to my resolve. I always find it easier to do things like this that require some level of willpower when other people know about it. It never once crossed my mind that anyone would think this would put LYSs out of business!

You know, in the past L-B and I have gone on a food diet at the same time so we had each other for moral support. Do you suppose if I had blogged about that I would have gotten hate mail from General F**ds and Kr*ft?


(Asterisks were inserted in the brand names because I read Cara’s blog entry today. A girl can’t be too careful.)

So, enough. Okay? Let’s move on to the point of this blog — knitting.

I’ve been knitting away on my Bohus — see?


I’ve got one more set of increases to do in the yoke, a few rows down from here. While I’m eager to be done with the yoke and start on the body, I’ll also be sorry. It’s so much fun to see the colorwork emerge!

The Other Reason for This Blog

That’s Lucy, of course.


Yesterday I mentioned to L-B that I had a bit of cashmere left over from a project and I planned to knit Lucy a new mouse from it for Christmas. This is what greeted me when I got up this morning.


That would be the leftover cashmere that Lucy has unwound. Clearly she approves.

Most Importantly

Check out the total for the Heifer Project!!!!!!

Busy, So Lotsa Pix and Little Content

I’ve had quite a busy day today, without nearly enough knitting. Running errands, wrapping Christmas gifts, et cetera.

I even — horror of horrors — cleaned up a bit.

I did do quite a bit of knitting on the Bohus after posting yesterday. A full evening of Bohus knitting — what could be nicer? Here it is in the cold light of day this morning.


It doesn’t look like a while lot of progress, does it? But it is a very time-consuming knit — some rounds have three colors and assorted purl stitches on the right side.


But it is great fun and very satisfying to knit. And what a glorious sweater it will grow up to be!


Here is what Lucy did all day.


Since I’ve not got a lot to say, a question from the comments:

Ann Rose asked:
One question I have, as a semi-newbie lacer is: How do you determine how much variegation a lace pattern can take? Do you swatch up and judge (hoping you bought enough yarn for whatever pattern eventually fits), or does experience with a wide variety of patterns and yarns over the years develop an instinct? I’m marinating some rainbow Koigu in my stash, and have swatched a few lace patterns, but everything looks too busy.

The busier the variegation, the simpler the lace pattern should be. A simple all-over lace pattern, like the Flower Basket Shawl, the Leaf Lace Shawl, or the Forest Canopy Shawl is best for busier variegation. It’s always a good idea to swatch, as you won’t really know until you do, eh?

Because I mentioned it yesterday, here’s a photo of my order from The Loopy Ewe, which I just got.


Yarn Pirate sock yarn! Soak wool wash!

And since I don’t have much in the way of content today (did I mention that?), here’s a peak at my knitting spot.


Clockwise, from bottom left you see my cup of Diet Coke, my spot on the couch, the Bohus in progress (with pattern) the phone for talking to L-B, the tv remote on the coffee table for watching DVDs of Brideshead Revisted, and the laptop for checking the Heifer total (woot!) blog-browsing, and emailing Rabbitch.

Life is good, ya know?

Full Disclosure

In the interests of full disclosure, I have to tell you that some stash enhancement has gone on chez WendyKnits.

This is what I got in the mail yesterday:


That would be . . . um . . . 40 skeins of Classic Elite Skye (20 skeins each of 2 colors) that I bought from Elann.

And this is 5 skeins of Great Big Sea Silk, purchased from Red Bird Knits.


It’s a worsted weight yarn — 50% Silk, 30% Wool and 20% Seacell. I’ve got it in the “Ocean” colorway

In my defense, both of these purchases were made before I made the Knit From Your Stash 2007 commitment.

I got something else in the mail yesterday, in a package with very alluring stamps.


This is a prize I won from the lovely Janine, for being the 1,000th commenter on her blog. It is a gorgeous handpainted roving from Spunky Eclectic.


Look at those colors!! Thanks, Janine!

And just so you know, I ordered sock yarn from The Loopy Ewe after making the Knit From Your Stash 2007 declaration. It should be here tomorrow. But remember:

Sock Yarns Don’t Count as Stash!

The Loopy Ewe

Bohus Progress

I am into the colorwork! Alert the media!

Many of the rounds are three-color rounds and have some purl stitches on the right side for texture. While this is somewhat nerve-wracking to knit, I am just in awe of the beauty of the colors together. The color changes are incredibly subtle and very very hard to capture in a photo. You’ll have to just take my word for it — it looks amazing!

Bad photo:


Another bad photo:


Winners! Winners! Winners!

Without further ado, here are this week’s winners in the Heifer Project raffle:

Bente in Germany wins the Knitspot pattern of her choice, donated by Anne Hanson, Knitspot

Shanti wins 3 skeins of Scarlet Fleece sock yarn (480 yards per 100 gram skein, 80% wool/20% nylon) donated by Kathy Oliver, Holly Spring Homespun

Christy S. wins a handmade “Make One” t-shirt, donated by Katherine Of It All

Chris P. wins Icelandic wool yarn from Tongue River Farm, donated by Raye Schwartz

Virginia T. wins hand-dyed yarn from A Piece of Vermont, 50/50 wool/alpaca,3 oz., 200 yds. Worsted weight, 4-5 sts/in on 7-8 ndls, donated by Lyn.

Rabbitch wins Spin to Knit by Shannon Okey, donated by Nina S.

Thank you to everyone! Check out the total donations so far! Woo!

Ho Ho Ho!

I am feeling indescribably festive because today was my last day of work until January 4, 2007. “Use or lose leave,” how I love thee.

And Lucy is pleased because she will have her Momma home to cater to her every whim.


New Stuff!

I’ve got new spinning and new knitting to play with.

On Saturday, I pulled out another superwash merino roving from Crown Mountain Farms out of my stash — this one in the “Good Vibrations” colorway.


I pulled off a short length, spun it, and Andean plied it, as a sample. I felt that I had put a bit too much twist in the singles for my “Do You Believe in Magic” sock yarn — I wanted this yarn to be a bit softer. So I fiddled with the ratios a bit before spinning.

I knitted the sample yarn into a little test swatch.


Bingo! I’m very happy with this yarn. The plying on the sample is not all that it should be because I did it very quickly (and sloppily). But it gives me a pretty good idea of what my finished yarn will look like. So I proceeded to spin. Here’s my progress so far.


But that’s not all . . .

I finished my Mountain Stream Scarf, as I reported yesterday. Here’s a post-blocking pic:


It shrunk down slightly when released from the blocking pins, as I expected it would. It’s a very nice size, though, and lovely and light and airy.

So Sunday morning, I pulled a kit out of my stash to start work on. And I don’t know how several of you guessed correctly from the photo I showed yesterday, but yes, it is a Bohus. The “Large Lace Collar” to be exact.

It’s the first sweater pictured on this page.

I purchased this kit a year ago from Solveig Gustafsson, the incredibly talented woman who re-created the Bohus designs from the originals. If you want more information on this and how to order, read my blog entry from December 7, 2005, when I was embarking on my first Bohus project. A number of the kits have patterns translated into English by Susanna Hansson — she has a list of kits available in English on her website.

While the main color of the design I’m knitting is black, the neckband is white. And it was the start of the neckband I showed you yesterday. 154 stitches in k1 p1 rib on a 2mm needle. That takes forever. Just sayin’. I do think that when I pick up k1 p1 ribbing on 2mm needle something odd happens to the time-space continuum. Time speeds up and my hands slow down so that it takes me approximately 14 hours to complete one round.


Heifer Project

We went over $25,000 this morning! And there’s a prize drawing tomorrow afternoon!

Lucy Sez


I’m just gonna wait here for Santa to bring me my baby chicks . . .