My current work in progress:

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


Happy Birthday, Mom!

Today is my mom’s birthday — it’s a special one. I dunno if she’d want me telling her age to the entire blog-o-sphere, so I’ll whisper it. She’s eighty years old today!

Here she is, a couple of years ago.

Mom and Me Then 053007

Mom and Me Then 053007

Yeah, that’s me with her. I’ve changed a little since then.

Remember a couple of weeks ago when it was my dad’s birthday and I told you he was one of very few very brilliant people I know? My mom is one of those few as well. Not only is she incredibly smart, but she’s incredibly talented and artistic, too, as well as having a great sense of humor. She draws, paints, sews, knits, cooks, and bakes, all equally beautifully. Any artistic talent and creativity I have comes from her. Thanks, Mom!

We went out to lunch today to celebrate. Here she is wearing her birthday gift from me — the Alpine Lace I knitted a couple of months back.

Mom 053007

Mom 053007

And the back of the shawl — looks great on her, doesn’t it?

Mom 053007a

Mom 053007a

Here she is with my Dad:

Mom and Dad 053007

Mom and Dad 053007

Please leave a comment, wishing my mom a happy birthday!

The Lucy Colorway

Several of you have asked if the Blue Moon Fiber Arts “Lucy” colorway was named after my Lucy. It was — read this blog entry from last August to learn more about it.

Thanks for all your nice comments on the Kiri shawl. It’s now carefully folded and stored on a shelf. Lucy seemed to think it was for her, a particularly luxurious kitty blanket. We had Words when I took it away from her . . .

Foam Squares for Blocking

I had a couple of questions about the foam blocks I used for blocking the Kiri shawl. They are interlocking fitness mats. You can get something like them at places like hardware stores and possibly Target. I ordered mine from — a set of the 2’x’ squares here and a set of 1’x1′ squares here.

What’s Next?

I started knitting something from the Spring/Summer 2007 Vogue Knitting — design #19, a short-sleeve cardigan. If you go to the preview page at Vogue Knitting, you can see a photo of it. It’s shown under the heading “The Paper Chase” a little more than halfway down the page, and it’s the tan cardi at the far right.

The pattern calls for Lion Brand Yarn Organic Cotton. I am using GGH Big Easy, in a lovely milk chocolate. It’s 100% cotton and is working up at the same gauge as the suggested yarn — 18 sts/4 inches on a US 7 (4.5mm) needle.

I’m making the largest size (which has a bust measurement of 40″) and it calls for 12 skeins of Organic Cotton, which is 80 meters per 50g skein. The GGH Big Easy is 70 meters per 50g skein, and I have 13 of them, so I’ll hopefully be okay. I’ve got a good part of the back done, and I don’t think it’ll take more than 4 skeins, so I think I’m okay, yarn-wise.

Here’s the back so far.

Cardi Back 053007

Cardi Back 053007

The pin in the side is to denote the start of the armhole — makes it easier to measure.

And a close-up of the bottom:

Cardi Back Closeup 053007

Cardi Back Closeup 053007

Lucy Sez:

Lucy 053007

Lucy 053007

“I must think of a way to get that Kiri shawl away from her . . . “


  1. Happy Birthday, Wendy’s Mom! You look terrific in your birthday shawl.

  2. Happy Birthday, Wendy’s Mom…and many more!!

  3. Stephanie says:

    Wishing you all good things for your birthday and always from a knitter in N.Z.

    Wendy Hello and thank you for your great Kiri cast on tutorial. I did it, very exciting.

  4. Happy Birthday Wendy’s Mom! Hope it’s a fantastic day.

  5. cecilia says:

    Happy Birthday Wendy’s mom. I hope you have many more. You look wonderful in the Alpine shawl. You obviously did a great job raising your daughter.

  6. Your mom looks fabulous! We should all look so great at any age.

  7. Happy Birthday Wendy’s Mom! Here’s hoping its a beautiful day with many more to come!

  8. Happy Birthday Wendy`s Mum! I wish you a lot of healthy and happy years to go.

  9. Happy Birthday, Wendy’s Mom! May you have many, many more!

  10. Happy birthday, WendyMom!!!!

    (Also, the shawl is beautiful on you! And how much do I love the fierce pink shoes?? My sincerest wish right this minute is that I can wear sassy footwear my whole life long.)

  11. Happy Birthday Wendy’s Mom!!!

    Thanks Wendy for the link to purchase the blocks

  12. Jill D. says:

    Happy Birthday Wendy’s mom!
    I see you and your husband are like my parents….my mom is 5 feet tall and my dad is 6 foot 4 inches tall. They used to be called “Mutt & Jeff” ๐Ÿ™‚

    Wendy…the shawl is perfectly your mom!

  13. Happy birthday Wendy’s Mom! The shawl looks just lovely on you.

  14. Elizabeth says:

    Happy Birthday, Wendy’s Mom!

    Hope you have a wonderful day, many more happy birthdays, and may only good things come to you and yours.

  15. Happy Birthday Wendy’s mum!

    Wendy, your parents are so cute! Your mum is so tiny and your dad so tall!

    PS: love mum’s purse and shoes! I hope I dress that nicely at 80!

  16. Barb in Texas says:

    Happy Birthday, Wendy’s Mom!

    May babies are the best.

  17. Happy, happy birthday, Wendy’s mum! Love your shawl!

  18. Happy Birthday Wendy’s Mom!

    Also Wendy, readers can also use interlocking foam letter puzzle pieces. My three year old son has a set which I’ve now claimed since he doesn’t really play with it. I think its cheaper than the fitness blocks (but I could be wrong) I’ve even seen smaller letter foam blocks at the dollar store recently (you would have to buy several sets, but still – cheap – they may be ideal for blocking a scarf)
    There is a post on my blog from just a few months ago, probably March with pictures featuring a shawl being blocked on the letter blocks ๐Ÿ™‚

  19. Happy birthday! Enjoy the day.

  20. Happy Birthday Wendy’s Mom! Fabulous Shawl!!

  21. Happy birthday to your Mom, Wendy. She sounds like a terrific person, and the shawl is gorgeous on her. Many happy returns.

    Remember, way back when she was a teenager, everything you did or said embarrassed her?
    She’s getting back at you now by publicizing your special birthday to the entire world!

    But in such a NICE way! And what a gorgeous birthday present she made for you. As a knitter and creative person, you can very much appreciate the workmanship, I’m sure.

    I hope my daughter feels the same way about her mother (once we get through these teen years).

    As for Lucy and Kiri, obviously Kiri literally had Lucy’s name all over it, eh? Lucy knows!

  23. You’re looking mahhvelous, Wendy’s Mom! Happy Birthday!!

  24. Happy Birthday, Wendy’s Mom! You look great, and I love your new shawl.

  25. Happy Birthday Wendy’s Mom!

  26. Happy Birthday, Wendy’s Mom! You look lovely in your shawl, and I think your pink shoes are the perfect birthday touch!

  27. Happy birthday Wendy’s mom! The shawl is just perfect.

  28. Happy Birthdaaaayyy! So well-dressed, I love it! ๐Ÿ™‚

  29. At the risk of offending…it was a surreal moment reading this post, as today would have been my grandmother’s 80th birthday as well. Unfortunately, she died of emphysema 20 years ago this November, but she’s been in my thoughts this week.

    Congrats on your mother’s birthday!

  30. Happy Birthday Wendy’s Mom!! Have a wonderful day and may more to come!

    P.S. Poor Lucy – taking her blanket away….shame shame

  31. Annette says:

    I hope your birthday was a lot of fun!

  32. Wendy’s Mom: Happy, happy Birthday! Thank you so much for giving us readers your wonderful daughter! We love her and you!

  33. Happy Birthday, Mom o’ Wendy, and many more! You make the shawl look even prettier.

    (P.S. to Wendy – I am envious of you, still having your mom around to spend time with. Give her a kiss from me.)

  34. Happy Birthday, Wendy’s Mom!!! Many happy returns!!!

  35. The shawl looks lovely as does the recipient!!! Wishing Wendy’s mom a very happy birthday!

  36. Happy Birthday to Wendy’s mother! I love women who wear bright colors – she makes 80 look good.

  37. happy birthday wendy’s mom!! The alpine shawl looks just gorgeous on your shoulders…..

    P.S. Your kiri is beautiful and in lucy’s coloring…

  38. Happy Birthday Wendy’s Mom! Hope you have a great day!

  39. Happy Birthday to you Mom!!!

    Your Mom and Dad are so cute together. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Poor Lucy. Thought that you made someting for her then you take it away. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    That cardi is going to be so pretty. I will keep my fingers crossed that you will have enough yarn.

  40. Happy, happy Birthday to you, Wendy’s mom! You look beautiful. I wouldn’t mind looking like you 38 years from now. ๐Ÿ™‚ You are clearly a very special person being born on this very special day. The world’s best people were born on this particular date. (OK, it’s my birthday too)

    Are you just very petite or is your husband about 14 feet tall??

  41. Happy Birthday to your Mom!

  42. Happy Birthday!!!

    Ahem, hm

    Happy Birthday to you, happy birthday to you
    Happy Birthday Dear Wendy’s Mom, Happy Birthday to youuuuuuuuu!


  43. Happy birthday to Wendy’s mom! I hope you’ve have a great birthday!

  44. Happy Birthday Mrs. Johnson!!! You look great in those photos, so put-together! And the shawl goes perfectly over it all.

  45. Happiest of birthdays to a lovely looking lady! What a fine couple you make. Enjoy your day!

  46. Laureen says:

    Happy Birthday, Mom! Your shawl is gorgeous, but we all knew it would be. But the matching purse and shoes are fabulous. Wendy must have gotten her style sense from you.(She’s the first person I knew who had a Dooney and Bourke)

  47. Many Happy Returns!

  48. Happy Birthday Wendy’s Mom! Here’s to many more healthy years.
    By the by, your shawl looks lovely. I’m most envious.

  49. Happy Birthday to your Mom!! She is one sharp dresser! I think she looks great in that outfit!

  50. Happy Birthday Wendy’s Mom!! You look lovely in your birthday shawl! (And you certainly look younger than you years as well!)

  51. Happy Birthday, Wendy’s Mom! She looks beautiful in the shawl.

  52. Happy Birthday, Wendy’s Mum! Just as lovely now as then, and I can see where Wendy gets her stylishness.

  53. Happy Birthday to Wendy’s mom. Such a cute couple! A lovely shawl, it really looks good on her.

  54. Happy, Happy Birthday Dear Mom of Wendy! We can definitely see from where Wendy gets her good genes! Also, 80 is a landmark birthday for Chinese folks. So extra Happy Birthdays to you! =)

  55. Happy birthday, Wendy’s Mom! I hope it’s a great one, with many more to come!

  56. Happy Birthday to your mother. She does look very beautiful in that shawl.

  57. Happy Birthday!! You fit the shawl perfectly – and Alpine Lace lends a cool feeling to a hot day.

  58. Happy Birthday Wendy’s mom, have a wonderful year. You are quite the styling birthday girl.

    Liza – the blogless

  59. Happy Birthday, Wendy’s Mom!!! And what a gorgeous gift – it so suits you!
    Wear it in wonderfully good health for a good many more happy returns!!! (I LOVE those hot pink shoes…)

    (and Wendy, I don’t know how you got that shot of Lucy – but a better caption of it you couldn’t find…I think she really IS plotting! lol!)

  60. Happy Birthday, Wendy’s mom! You look radiant in your shawl and with your husband! Thanks for raising a talented and giving daughter, too!

  61. I can’t think of a better post to de-lurk on! Happy birthday, Wendy’s mom, and many more!

    I have to say, you look 50 at the most (and Wendy looks maybe 30 ๐Ÿ˜‰ )!

  62. Happiest of Birthdays to Wendy’s Mom! Hope you enjoyed your Birthday Lunch. What a lovely gift the shawl was. I made a shawl for my Mom’s 80th as well.

  63. Happy Birthday to you…
    Happy Birthday to you…
    You look fabulous in the shawl…
    Happy Birthday to you!

  64. Your mom and dad are such a darling couple. And her pink shoes – too cute!

  65. Happy birthday, Wendy’s mom! The shawl looks lovely on you.

    Oh oh, Lucy’s plotting….. you’re in for it. I know all about plotting cats. Next she’ll be on the ‘net, soliciting ideas from other cats…

  66. Happy Happy Birthday!

    An eightieth birthday is a joyous occasion – you have brought much joy to others in your life and I hope that this day much joy comes back to you in recognition of the happiness you’ve given.

  67. Have a wonderfully joyful and happy birthday, Wendy’s Mom!

  68. Happy Birthday, Wendy’s Mom!!! You look so nice in that beautiful shawl that Wendy knit for you. Love the new cardigan, Wendy.

  69. Happy BDay Wendy’s Mom!!!

    You really must be Saintly… look at that grumpy expression Wendy is wearing ๐Ÿ™‚ Was she a cranky child? (you can tell us, we promise to be nice and not pick on her too terribly much!)

  70. Happy birthday, Wendy’s mom! You sure don’t look eighty! Your new stole looks beautiful on you.

    Wendy, I like the short-sleeve cardigan pattern very much, but I’d have to upsize it. Any opinion on whether or not it would be relatively easy to upsize?

  71. Mellanie says:

    Happy birthday! You look the same today as you did in the picture where you’re holding Wendy–beautiful. Have a great day!

  72. Happy birthday, Wendy’s mom!

  73. Poor little Lucy. She looks soooo mistreated. She is pining for that shawl. C’mon mom….give it to her. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Happy Birthday Wendy’s Mom!

  74. Happy Birthday, Wendy’s Mom. You’re looking better in high heals at 80 than I ever will!

  75. Happy Birthday Wendy’s Mom. What a lovely birthday present.

  76. Marianne Y says:

    I hope you have a great birthday, Wendy’s Mom! I love your outfit, complete with the hot pink shoes & bag (that’s my favorite color), and topped off with the gorgeous Alpine Shawl! The Alpine shawl looks so beautiful on you! You must be one terrific lady to have raised such a wonderful daughter as Wendy! Thank you for sharing her with us all. We have learned so much from her, and really enjoyed it in the process! I wish you many more healthy, happy birthdays, too!

  77. Momerina says:

    Happy Birthday Wendy’s Mom!!! Your shawl is the best gift a mom can receive–something made with love by her daughter. Wear it in good health.

  78. Happy Birthday, Wendy’s mom. What a beautiful outfit you are wearing and how nice that the shawl goes with everything!

  79. Happy Birthday Wendy’s Mom!! Hope it is a wonderful one!!

  80. Happy Birthday Mrs. Johnson! You don’t look a day over 52, even if it makes your children illegitimate…

    (quote by Lady Nancy Astor)

  81. Happy birthday to your Mom! Happy birthday to me, too! It is my birthday, but I am not 80…I am 42! Love your knitting and informative blog. Johanna

  82. Happy Birthday Wendy’s Mom!!! Remember you’re not getting older, you’re just getting wiser.

    And what a beautiful shawl, it looks as if you were made for each other.

  83. A very happy birthday to you, Mrs. Johnson, and many more with your husband. I’m sure you know how lucky you are. Wendy is also lucky — and she certainly knows it. Lots to celebrate!

  84. Happy Birthday Wendy’s Mom!

  85. Happy Birthday to your Mom.She looks so pretty in pink! and your shawl! This is a special one!

  86. Happy birthday to you..
    Happy birthday to yooouuuuu…
    Happy birthday Wendys moooommmmmm,
    Happy birthday to yoooOOOOoouuuuuuu!!

    Ok. So my singing isnt too great but happy birthday!!

  87. Donna in Virginia says:

    Happy birthday, Wendy’s mom from Del Ray.

  88. Happy birthday, Wendy’s mommy! Kul sina wanti tayyib, ya 7abibati!

  89. Wendy’s mom, Happy Birthday! Your shawl looks great, and so do you!

    And you and your husband look good together, too. Something like my mom and dad — dad is a good deal taller than mom.

  90. Happy Birthday Wendy’s Mom! You look so beautiful in your new shawl.

  91. Happy Birthday!

  92. Happy Birthday, Wendy’s Mom, and many more!

    Poor Lucy; she’s so mistreated. ๐Ÿ™‚

  93. What a charming couple! Happiest of birthdays, Wendy’s Mom! You did a good job raising that girl!

  94. Shirley Gallagher says:

    Happy Birthday Wendy’s mom. You look smashing in your new shawl. May you have many wonderful days throughout the year.

  95. Happy, happy birthday, Wendy’s Mom. The shawl is certainly an addition to your accessorizing sensibility – love your handbag and shoes! Thanks for giving us Wendy and all her knitting knowledge.

  96. Happy Birthday to Wendy’s Mom.
    …and it’s my mother’s birthday too so I’ll wish her one here as well and to all born on 5/30 of whatever year.

  97. Happy Birthday, Wendy’s Mom!! the shawl is most beautiful on her!

  98. Fran in the UK says:

    Happy Birthday Wendy’s mom-or mum as we say here!!!from Fran in the UK, and many more of them….hope you’ve enjoyed it?

  99. A very happy birthday. I enjoy reading your daughter’s words about knitting. She frequently crystallizes solutions to common problems.

    I love your pink shoes.

  100. Happy Birthday Wendy’s Mom! Wishing you happiness and good health! Love the beautiful birthday shawl and love the pink helmet on Baby Wendy!