My current work in progress:

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


In Celebration of the Vernal Equinox

I am knitting socks in an insanely bright and fun colorway.


This is Scarlet Fleece sock yarn in the Poodle Skirt colorway, purchased from The Loopy Ewe. These are definitely “Frank” socks, as Sheri would say.

(Psssst! Did you see that The Loopy Ewe is now carrying Cookie A. sock patterns? Woo-hoo!!)

I’m doing my usual toe-up pattern and have incorporated the texture pattern from the Blueberry Waffle Socks that has been available online since the dawn of time. Instead of increasing stitches to accommodate my fat ankles, I have switched to a larger needle size for the leg.

The Scarlet Fleece sock yarn is wonderful to knit. It feels like 100% wool, but has some nylon content for strength and wearability. It’s cushy and soft and a pleasure on the needles. And the colors are amazing. I have several skeins of it in stash, of course.

Onward . . .

Thanks again for all the great Cromarty comments!

There was a question about how to size it up (The Cromarty pattern is one size only). I think this could easily be achieved by adding a couple of the small cable motifs at the sides. Or a bit of reverse stockinette stitch. It’s just as easy to size down — just remove a couple of the smaller cable motifs.

New Lace!

A number of you knew that my new lace project is the Alpine Knit Scarf from Victorian Lace Today. That’s the name of the pattern, but I think it’s too large to call it a scarf. Just my opinion. It’s really a rectangular shawl, at 18 by 65 inches. And mine will be wider than that, judging from its unblocked state.

I’m using Morehouse Merino laceweight in a natural cream color. This is fabulous laceweight. It’s a single, and has a nice rough-hewn look to it, but it will block out beautifully. I purchased it about 18 months ago (still knitting from my stash — woo!) and forgot about it.


My Stitch ‘n Bitch calendar had a page devoted to it yesterday — made me smile when I tore off the page. Good timing!

Here is my progress so far:


No, I did not knit this insanely fast last night. I was off work yesterday to take care of a number of odds and ends. One of them was a trip to Wiygul Automotive for routine maintenance on my car. So I had some “sit and knit” time there while I was waiting.

I actually like going there. The place has a very good reputation and guys who work there are extremely nice. Of course, they always tease me about the low mileage on my car (less than 7500 miles in over three years) and call it “The Virgin Honda.” And a couple of them come back to the waiting area and check on my knitting.

Car Guy: Have you finished my sweater yet?

Me: Actually, I’m knitting a lace shawl (holds up work) but if you think you’d like one, I’ll make one for you.

Laughter all around.

Good times.



Lucy would like to thank everyone who emailed me about the pet food recall. Fortunately, Lucy doesn’t eat any of the foods listed on the recall.

Bonus pic of Lucy’s incredibly fluffy tummy (she was on my lap while I took this picture):


By the Way

What does it say about me and my housekeeping abilities that when I hauled my vacuum cleaner out this afternoon to vacuum up the big chunks it took me a few minutes to figure out how to switch it on?

Yeah, that’s what I thought.


  1. O, am I the first? Fabulous color for socks! Never would have guessed a shawl…. beautiful, as always. Lucy, fluffy, darling kitty! luv.m.

  2. Wendy, I like the lace – I’ve been looked at the shrug in A Gathering of Lace. Are you familiar with that book? Any thoughts on the patterns?


  3. Patricia says:

    Love the vernal equinox socks! A great color to see on a day that is full of clouds, wind, rain and hail where I am!

    The work study student who helps me with filing, copying, etc. says today is the Persian new year- midnight is at 5:07 pst.

    I’m vacuum averse as well.

  4. I love the lace, everything I’ve seen from that book makes me want to buy it… a hint hmmm?

    Don’t you love how knitting has made the normally mundane to slightly annoying activities a wonderful stolen bit of fun? Taking the bus, long car trips, the doctor’s office, the airport, stoplights, well maybe not stoplights, but still.

    Everyone should knit. Further proof.

  5. I understand about forgetting about the on switch. I bought a vacuum about a month before I moved into my new house, where I have been for nine years. It has all hardwood floors. I use it once a year to vacuum out dust from the floor heater.

    PS. Cookie A is teaching “design your own socks” on the Spindilicity cruise to Alaska – you can have her all to yourself for a whole week!

  6. Wow, great color for socks – definitely good for those duldrum days. As for the vacuum – it just says that you are way too busy with the important stuff – like rubbing Lucy’s belly – to waste time on menial tasks like vacuuming…besides, if she’s anything like my kitties, she *hates* the vacuum, and who wants to traumatize something that sweet…

    I have a Morehouse Merino lace shawl kit waiting for me…maybe I should follow your example?

  7. CatBookMom says:

    Not knowing how to turn on your vacuum cleaner is a problem why??

    Socks are so cheerful and spring-like, the sharf (shawl/scarf) is absolutely beautiful, and Lucy, well, showing off her star power as always.

  8. oops…sweet thing… (I have a love affair for the ellipsis today apparently….)

  9. Wendy- That’s what I tell my husband. I can’t be a Knitting Diva and a perfect housekeeper!

    Sheesh- some people are never happy!

  10. Great socks! I love the Blueberry Waffle pattern; I’ve knit them three times, including my first ever pair of socks. Alpine Lace looks lovely.

    Thank goodness Lucy didn’t have to give up her food…neither did my Grace. I shudder to think of the protests if Grace didn’t get her lunch! ๐Ÿ™‚

  11. Wendy,
    Your scarf/shawl is wonderous! That’s a lot of knitting lace for one day! I love your blog, your stuff is always wonderful.

  12. I love the bits about Lucy! She’s a pretty kitty and just confirms an apparent obsession knitters seem to have with cats. Including me. The one animal that will gladly chase a yarn ball for hours or try the taste of a just finished project… gotta love’m.

  13. I definitely have to think about getting the Victorian Lace book. So many wonderful things. Never mind that I still haven’t made a single lace thing yet.

    Too funny that the car guys are actually into your knitting. Wish I had a place like that here.

  14. I love Lucy’s tufted feeties too ๐Ÿ™‚

    I have a Dyson in the closet growing cobwebs but have your tried the Dirt Devil Broom Vac? I love mine and somehow it makes the housework more palatable!

    Love the new sock and new shawl!

  15. It SEZ you’d rather knit. Which is a good thing IMHO! Gorgeous lace, as per usual. Good comment to the car guy, too.

  16. Those kitty pantaloons are too much.
    Cute Overload, eat your heart out.

  17. What a great sock color! And I use my maintenance time at the car dealership to knit too. Tom, my service rep, always asks for a peek at what I’m working on. This last time he told me, “That sock is not a good color me!” ๐Ÿ˜‰

  18. What kind of DPNs do you use for your sock knitting? I’m starting to catch sock fever and am working on settling in to “preferred” needles. I generally like metal needles but can’t find smaller DPNs in m etal in my area.

  19. I love the Scarlet Fleece sock yarn in the Poodle Skirt color way. My fingers are itching to do some shopping on the internet. The last yarn I ordered from a blog review (I think it was you) was Apple Laine and I loved it.

    So how do the inside out socks feel when worn? I finished the toe and am making my way up the foot. I am not getting the striping effect you got but a lot of pooling.

  20. That really is one beautiful shawl. I fell in love with the diamond pattern when I first saw it. Perhaps I should knit that one next.

    As always, Lucy is regally beautiful. ๐Ÿ˜€

  21. LOVE LOVE LOVE the Poodle Skirt sock yarn!! I have some in my stash to make knee socks for my 13 year old daughter. I feel proud to know Kathy from Hollyspring Homespun!!

    The shawl is very beautifu. You know, when you impress a bunch of mechanics with knitting it means you’re quite special!!

  22. Yay, I love fluffy cat bellies!

  23. I meant beautiful, not beautifu. I hate keyboard gremlins!!

  24. What, pray tell, is a “vacuum cleaner”? I’m going to have to Google that one.

  25. I spent last Friday morning knitting in the Wiygul Automotive waiting room. I will be visiting them again soon with the other car–which needs new tires this month.

    The guys said appropriately nice things about my spring-like sock.

  26. Oh Wendy! I also have a ‘virgin’ car; mine has 4,500 miles in 18 months. LOL Lucy’s fuzzy belly is just asking to be snorgled. Smooch, smooch, smooch.

  27. Aussie Rosemary says:

    As the mother of a 17 year old cat,I would love to know what Lucy eats. The sock is beautiful.

  28. If it weren’t for the children who come into my home everyday, I would probably forget how to turn mine on too. Sadly, I can’t seem to find it in me to send fur covered children back to their parents at the end of the day.

    Your sock is a bright shot of spring.

  29. I had some serious deja vu when I read your entry today – I’m also knitting the Alpine lace shawl and posted almost the exact picture a few weeks ago! Great minds must think alike ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m also finding that mine will be wider than 18″, which is OK by me.

  30. I recognized the lace pattern because I’m knitting the same one. Of course mine isn’t progressing nearly as quickly as yours. In fact we are in about the same place, but I started mine just after Christmas! Maybe I’ll have it for next Christmas (or the one after that.)

  31. I want to go to your mechanic! Last time I went for an oil change, the dweeb behind the counter asked if I was about 54 (uh…take a decade or so off, buddy), then asked what that wonderful perfume was when I was paying. ew. Won’t be going back there again. I’d change your oil for a lace shawl, btw. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  32. I love the socks. Blueberry Waffle is such a great pattern. Like an old friend you just keep coming back to visit.
    The lace is beautiful. I especially love the rose leaves. They look like carved ivory against the patterned background. I have an over active imagination, but the whole thing reminds me of the sort of tracery you see in mosque stonework. Very beautiful and the elements seem perfectly balanced. I can’t wait to see how the whole shawl looks finished.
    My cat Lucky is nose to the monitor looking at Lucy. Must be spring in the air

  33. MaryB in Richmond says:

    A friend of mine once dragged out the ironing board and iron. She set it up in the TV room, where her high-school son was watching TV. As she set it up and got ready to get started, he frowned at her and said “Mom, do you have to do that now? Don’t those things make a lot of noise?”

    Gotta love it.

  34. Mellanie says:

    I say you’ve got your priorities straight if you’ve forgotten how to turn on the vacuum cleaner!

  35. I’m totally laughing at the vaccuum cleaner thing. I always tell people it’s my husband’s vaccuum but nobody believed me until a few years ago when I pulled it out to do a quick touch up and couldn’t figure out where the on button was. My friend looked at me and said – you really don’t use the vaccuum – do you?

  36. Gorgeous socks – I love that colour and the scarf/shawl is lovely too. You have better things to do than vacuum!

  37. My idea of housework is to sweep the room with a glance!

  38. I purchased some Scarlett Fleece also (different color) What size needles would you use for that yarn?It is kinda fluffy.

  39. Vacuuming is highly over rated! Knitting however is rated very high in life of things that produce happiness for everyone around you. What does a clean house produce? I rest my case.

  40. That’s one fluffy kitty tummy! Will Lucy let you pet it? My dear, departed Katie had an impossibly fluffy tummy like that, but she would totally shred you if tried to touch or pet it!

    Love the socks! Blueberry waffle was the first pair of socks I ever knit. I still have them.

  41. Isn’t it nice when people are NICE? When you get the little warm fuzzy and have the fleeting thought that maybe all of humanity (knitters excluded of course) isn’t screwed up? ๐Ÿ™‚

  42. Last year while knitting at my car place, waiting for the oil change and state inspection, one of the mechanics walked by and asked if I was knitting for my GRANDdaughter. (Ouch!) I gave him my frostiest “No!”, (at 40, I didn’t consider myself old enough to HAVE a granddaughter), and he then proceeded to tell me how his mother used to knit for rations in Morocco during WWII. I couldn’t stay mad at him after that.

    Love that blueberry waffle sock pattern — I want to knit that next! And I love that lace pattern, too. Gorgeous. ๐Ÿ™‚

  43. The socks are very pretty and the shawl gorgeous. I haven’t attempted lace work yet. Glad to hear Lucy didn’t get any of the bad food. Love the fluffy belly pic.

  44. Ooo.. That lace is lovely. I saw the pattern in the book but thought it would be too hard. Perhaps I’ll just watch you knit it instead!

  45. Yes, what is this “vaccuum cleaner” you speak of?! You’re a baaaad influence on my sock yarn stash!

    (Hey, go check out my finished Dalarna!)

  46. Meribeth says:

    Vaccuum? Not in this house. We are very eco friendly and conserve as much as possible. Vaccuums use to much energy, and the built up layers and chunks of cat hair adds to the insulating factor of the house. Win, win…and I can work on fiber more.

    What is it about kitty bellies? Big time awwwww!

    OK, stupid question. I thought singles, even in lace weight would cause a bias, unless the pattern compensated. Is this true or what….

  47. Alice in RIchmond says:

    Several years ago I heard my 2 kids talking one day after I asked them to share the vacuuming and dusting. The younger one said to the older one: “I’ll do the vacuum…you really only have to do the edges because that is where the tumbleweeds go.”

    Ha… it is hard to enforce chores when they are that funny about it.

  48. Wow, the socks and shawl look beautiful. My lace is slow going. I wish I could find more concetrated time to sit with it. I like going to get my car fixed too, good shops are always filled with good people (although I’m at the other end of the mileage spectrum – one month ago I had my oil changed, and I’m almost at 3K miles again).

  49. See – housework is for non-knitters! With all the great yarns and patterns out there who has time to waste on silly things like a clean house?

    Your lace and sock are quite lovely!

  50. Love the socks, love the lace, love the comeback to the car guy…love Lucy’s fluffy tummy…
    And please tell me where you found the “on” switch for your vacuum? I’ve lost mine, too! ๐Ÿ˜‰

  51. We’ve been looking for a good mechanic recommendation, so maybe we’ll cross the bridge and head over to your neck of the woods for one. Thanks!

  52. And I thought MY Honda was low mileage – just passed 36,000, and it’s been six and a half years. I don’t have fun mechanics, either.

    The Alpine ‘Scarf’ looks beautiful! Vitorian Lace Today is definitely on my to buy list.

    Hi to Lucy from Morgen the Schnauzer!

  53. Marianne Y says:

    I love your Scarlet Fleece socks in Poodle Skirt colorway & your lace project!

    I have a couple of questions for you: 1) what kind of soap do you use for washing your woolens (I have heard from a number of different not to use Woolite because the current formulation can harm fibers, etc), and 2) do you know of some nice patterns for a stole in a more rectangular shape or something for someone who has never knitted lace (I’m not very fond of the triangular shaped-shawl.)

    Many thanks for all that you do to keep us informed, etc! Your work is awesome!

  54. Wendy – – LOVE the pix of Lucy’s tummy! Sooooo cute!

    Love your new shawl/scarf you are making. It is stunning!


  55. Beth P. in Maryland says:

    I have been going to a spinning retreat each October for about 20 years, every year the director of the facility would ask us if his sweater was done yet. Last year we called his bluff, sort of. We knitted scarves from handspun for him and his wife!!!! They were quite surprised and, at least in front of us, acted as though they actually liked them!


  56. Hi Wendy-
    Excited to see a project using the “poodle skirt” colorway. Sad to say my dying takes a bit of time away from my knitting-this is the 1st time I have seen that colorway knitted up-very cool-you make me look good! Note-Scarlet Fleece sightings will be subject of my next blog-can I include you? Happy 1st day of spring! Scarlet says “Hi yah!” to Lucy.

  57. Sally Pillinger says:

    It takes me a while to catch up ……

    I love Cromarty!!!!

    Not sure about hand knitted socks or knitting on four needles. Is there room in your shoes for knitted socks? Or do you wear them as slippers?


  58. Theresa in Italy says:

    Darn it all, the switch on my vacuum cleaner is so huge even I can’t miss it. But I refuse to learn how to change the bag, so I can only clean so much at a time…

  59. Gwyndolyn O'Shaughnessy says:

    Love me some Lucy!

    Gwyndolyn goes to the vet in a 1987 Honda CRX with … 45,000 miles on it. The car guys are in awe, and the other customers — muggles, all — are astonished by the knitting. Some people are easily impressed by bus commuters. ๐Ÿ˜€

  60. A woman after my own cleaning sensibilities. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  61. Wendy, I read your post on CAP and wanted to tell you that Tupperware sells Fridge Mates (or something like that) that are the same concept as your crisper drawers. They are containers with vents – but LISTEN! they come with a guide about what to put in drier storage and what to keep moister. I love mine but obviously don’t use them properly since I lost the chart. Anyway.

  62. Ooo I just want to bury my face in Lucy’s tummy! She’s so fluffy!

    The scarf/shawl is very pretty!

  63. Lucy has one luscious, belly-icious belly! My Maine Coon, Casey was like that. I called her the belly-icious belly girl because of her long, soft, creamy bellyfurs. I miss her.

    I’m still plugging along on my Rockin’ Sock Club socks. Takes me about three weeks to knit a pair, and I’m only about two-thirds of the way through the foot.

    That scarf/shawl looks gorgeous! Great job!

  64. I just read your book and I absolutely love it! It’s encouraging and fun ๐Ÿ™‚

  65. I’d been saving some Poodle Skirt for dark times. Maybe its time to treat myself and cast on! I have the merino weight (i have made sox and my clapotis out of that weight) but glad to know the x2 tubular is good too. Not that I expect anything less from Kathy and Holly Spring.

  66. May I say that I’m proud of you that you didn’t know how to turn on your vacuum cleaner! That’s a true testament to the dedication you have to knitting.

    I’ve been admiring your pi shawl, particularly since, although I’m good at color and texture in knitting, I’m hopeless at lace. A friend has offered to knit that shawl for me, and the pattern is on it way. I’m curious to know the weight of the yarn you used, and if you have it in your notes somewhere, the yardage you used. I’m planning to use the lace weight in either Gemstone Silk or Zephyr, and I want to make certain there’s plenty of yarn.

    Thanks so much for any help.


  67. I love Lucy. She remindes me of my seal point Himi’s. My last, Kimi-Kimi, passed away nearly 4 years ago. She was 19 years and 3 months old and I miss her. Where did you adopt Lucy? I would love another kitty to inspect my knitting while sitting on my lap.

    I was anxious about the cat and dog food disaster. Vader is 9 years old, and for a huge German Shepherd dog, that is around 90 human years. Vader loves his ‘Little Ceasers’ mixed with his kibble. Thank goodness we accidently escaped the bad food. I am relieved to hear Lucy escaped it too.

    I don’t visit daily, but always enjoy Lucy and you sharing your incredible wealth of information and perfect knitting. Love those socks. My favorite color. I enjoy visiting and reading about your adventures. And thanks for sharing both yourself and your Lucy with us.