My current work in progress:

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


Cecil B. DeKOARC Does It Again

The KOARC posted this on his blog, but I think it is worth repeating here.

Disclaimer: Yes, in this video you can see piles o’ crap on my floor. (That would be a stack of knitting books, a tote bag full of sock yarn, and a couple of priority mail boxes.) I would be mortified if I had the energy. But I don’t have the energy to care, much less to actually clean the place up. So, onward to socks. Here is the first Hearts for Heidi sock:

Hearts 091807

Hearts 091807

Looks better on a foot!

Hearts on Foot 091807

Hearts on Foot 091807

It has briefly crossed my mind that what I really ought to do is pull all-nighters for the rest of the week. Finish these socks and bang out another pair, bringing the total for the Summer of Socks to 20 pairs. Upon reflection, this seems like a not-so-good idea. So my prediction for the total is 19 pairs.

Options Needles

Marji asked:

Do you find that you have to frequently tighten the Options connection or is that just me?

I never have to re-tighten the Options connection. But my buddy L-B does. So it’s not just you. πŸ™‚

Mystery Fibers!Β 

Clara Parkes, of Knitter’s Review, is hosting a virtual fiber-guessing game and I was invited to participate. In anticipation of her new book, The Knitter’s Book of Yarn, once a week for four weeks, Clara is sending the participants a small package with two yarn samples and a question about them, plus a clue to help us figure out the answer. Here are the samples:

Mystery Fibers 091807

Mystery Fibers 091807
The clue: both of these yarns have a merino base plus one other fiber that gives a distinct look and feel. Can you guess the other fiber in each yarn?Β  A hint for one: be sure to wash your swatches in warm soapy water.

I have my guess — what do you think? We’ll find out from Clara at the end of the game!

Lucy Sez

Lucy 091807

Lucy 091807

Enough with the camera!


  1. Great sock. Okay, if you had been at full strength all summer, how many pairs of socks had you predicted that you would complete?

  2. Oh go on…whip out five more pairs! What?…oh, I suppose I did guess 24. What are you suggesting?


    I’m guessing silk for one Mystery Fiber, and alpaca for the other. I’m not sure why, other than I have a little crush on alpaca.

    Lucy is lovely as usual!

  3. I love the way the hearts sock looks on! The yarn looks great in that pattern.

    Have fun with the Mystery Fiber! Sounds like an amusing game. Be sure to do the Lucy test on them, too, and see which is the more kitty-friendly.

  4. Can I guess the fiber? I say the top one has some silk (probably 30-50%) and the bottom one has a touch of mohair. I hope you share the real answer when you find out!

  5. I love the hearts sock! I have been working with your feather and fan pattern and am melding it with you toe-up gusset fingering weight pattern. I noticed that you more recent socks use a slipped stitch heel flap, but the feather and fan pattern uses straight knitting. Which one do you prefer and why? Thank you!

  6. I love the Lucy video…the camera just loves her! And, in my opinion, I think you should not pull all nighters and just stick with the 19 pairs of socks–since that was my guess. πŸ™‚

  7. That sounds like a fun game! My guess would be that the top one has tencel, and the bottom one alpaca.

  8. My god, Lucy is one of the cutest things to ever wear fur and walk on four legs!

  9. What a fun game! I would have to guess silk in the top one and alpaca in the bottom one.

  10. I would guess silk for the top and cotton for the bottom.

  11. The top one is merino / tencel. Of this I am sure. The bottom one? Hmmm, maybe merino / angora?

  12. Fiber guess: Tencel for the top, with that degree of shine, and I’m thinking alpaca for the bottom, but I’d have to feel it — could be mohair. Too fun.
    Great socks, and 19 is a most excellent number even though it wasn’t my guess.

  13. Tencel for the top, cashmere for the bottom.

    Between the music and The Ring, that looked like Lucy’s routine for the Kitty Rhythmic Gymnastics event πŸ™‚

  14. Barbara McCall says:

    When that 19th pair is complete, what do you plan to knit? There HAS to be something different in the offing!

  15. Alice in RIchmond says:

    ooo I love how Lucy steps on the ring so it will pop up for her to grab with her teeth. Such a smart kitty. And like Tracy I thought of Rhythmic Gymnastics…not that it should be an olympic event. I always wondered about that.


  16. Lucy, you are photogenic! I’m sure that no one noticed the house with you as the star.

    I have the new wooden KnitPicks and they are less slippery but a bummer on really dark yarn. I need new eyes, new glasses or a better Dazor; maybe all three. The heart socks are gorgeous, will they be for sale?

    In my Options set I do have trouble with the giant needles staying sturdy on cables, why don’t you? Is there some sort of tightening trick (even with the key) that I need to know about?

    More movies please Lucy,

  17. I’m with Lisa J. – I think tencel on top and angora on the bottom. What a fun game!

  18. Hey, Piles O’ Crap on The Floor is *my* patented decorating style!

    Does Lucy have an agent yet? She’s quite a starlet!

  19. that video of Lucy playing fetch is adorable πŸ™‚ one of my kitties likes that game too.
    nice heart socks – yet I’m so sorry to hear that you are still doing poorly that just plain stinks.

    and the fibers? I’d guess merino-tencel for the top one, and merino-bamboo for the bottom one.

  20. I’m totally in awe of your Summer of Socks total, particularly because I know you haven’t been at full strength. And your floor? Honestly, I worry a little bit about people with clean floors. πŸ™‚

  21. I think I guessed something ridiculous like 90 socks for your Summer of Socks total; sheesh. I figured one sock a day. I didn’t know we were doing PAIRS! And don’t worry, Wendy! None of us look at your apartment when we watch Lucy videos. I swear!

  22. Mystery Fibers: the top one is a merino/tencel blend. I want to say the bottom one is merino/BFL blend, though I don’t know why you’d blend those two together…

  23. I’m loving the Hearts for Heidi!

    For the top I’m guessing bamboo. For the bottom tofu.

  24. What a work! Who needs “Lord of the Rings” when you have “Lucy and the Plastic Ring”????

    I like those socks, the pattern and the yarn seem like an excellent match.

  25. I’m guessing tencel. FIne silvery slivers indicate a fiber that didn’t take the dye, and tencel is a popular one in the world of yarn right now.

  26. I’m going with soysilk in the top and angora in the bottom.

  27. Top one tencel bottom one camel.

  28. New Jersey Laura says:

    19 pairs of socks, plus illness, plus starting your own pattern business — you are the Knitting Superwoman!! Yarn: silk and..?…tencel, acrylic, alpaca, soy, fluffernutter…

  29. ROFL! You think _THAT_ is stuff on the floor??? If I weren’t too mortified I’d post a picture to my blog — but forget it if you think THAT is a mess! Perhaps I will email you one some day, NOT!

    Lucy just gets cuter every day, I tell you. I was serious about that cloning I mentioned to you the other day.

    The mystery fibers look to me like either tencel or silk for the top and mohair for the bottom, I hope you’ll tell us when you find out?

  30. PS- Do you think that you will ever be able to be talked in to writing a pattern that the chart-phobic among us would be able to follow? I mean, one of the lovely ones like this new one — not something more plain?

    I so love all of your new patterns but can’t follow a chart — how about if I beg? Or offer you something you can’t refuse in return? How about your own perfume. Formulated just for you!? Whadda ya say?

  31. I’m guessing wool and silk for the top and wool and mohair for the bottom. They both look like Lorna’s Laces to me. The top is the Swirl, which is plied with silk. I’m guessing Butterflies and Bullfrogs for the bottom. (My not-so-educated guess is that mohair provides loft.)

  32. I have to join the crowd in guessing silk for the top skein and alpaca for the bottom one.

  33. Darn, I guessed 23 pair. I’m especially sorry you didn’t feel well this summer for many reasons and that’s the least important.

    Don’t ask how many I knit. But I did just dye two pairs worth of self-striping sock yarn in a workshop last weekend. That should count for something.

    My first impression of the top yarn is wool and silk or bamboo. The lower one looks very soft but not really fuzzy – wool and llama?

  34. I love the white zinfandel yarn and the socks are cute but who’s Heidi?

  35. Laura from Italy says:

    My black cat Kitty Boo also loves playing with plastic rings very much. But she is younget than Lucy and so does it (as she does most things) in a much more energetic way. I love your socks. The colors are gorgeous and some of your patterns too beautiful to be true. I hope you will feel better soon. I have problems with my hands and arms and I hate not to be able to knit! Take care and give a hug to Lucy from me.

  36. Tencel for the top and alpaca for the bottom?

    I can’t get over how bushy Lucy’s tail is!

  37. Adorable video. πŸ™‚

    I really like this pair of socks, great pattern. I love the feel of the Boomerang yarn. I used my first skein I bought of it for a scarf, but it seems so HEAVY to me though to use for socks. I have another skein (in Poppy) so I could try it for socks, but to me it seems like it would be more of a house sock than a sock I would wear inside a shoe. I’m tempted to buy some of the Baby Boomerang but the price of it miffs me a little bit. I mean, I have a LOT of nice sock yarns but $29 seems a bit much to me! I am weak though, I am sure I will cave eventually and cough up the bucks!

    I should totally send you a disclaimer for my guess on your summer of socks count (I guessed a LOT of pairs! I probably would have been better off saying the count was more a single sock goal but yet, I know my entry was # of pairs!!). I think I was living vicariously through my stash at dreams of someone being able to knit enough pairs of socks in a couple of month span of time to make a dent in a stash my size! πŸ™‚

  38. Your not a mess and there is nothing to be ashamed! It looks like home, a home of a busy couple, with a lovely Lucy, and where the woman of the house has better things to do with her energy and time. (you should see the nests we have around our couch!)

    KOARK has out done himself this time. Love the music … really sets the mood and delicacy and lady like personality of the Star.

    Socks are fantastic! From one who does not really like hearts, your socks have changed my mind completely.

  39. Piles/Shmiles. I love your table. Lucy is adorable and I love these new socks. Thanks for a smile on a busy Wednesday morning!

  40. I’m too stupid to know the answers to these things. My first thought on the top was Tencel, but I had no idea why you’d have to wash Tencel in warm, soapy water…so then I thought maybe silk which you really do need to wash (I have a pound of recycled sari silk that’s on a time out for this reason), or that Seacell stuff, that smells like fish…because nobody wants a fishy sock (except maybe Lucy.) The bottom one is really pretty but I can’t tell by looking at it. It doesn’t look fluffy enough for angora or mohair or alpaca, because those always shed on me…so maybe cashmere. But I have some merino cashmere yarn at home and it has a different…sheen to it. So I don’t know. Maybe it’s something really sexy like Quiviut or Yak. πŸ˜‰

    That’s me and my stupid guesses done for the day.

    Lucy’s video is adorable. And your house is way cleaner than mine so no guilt should befall you.

  41. How cute is Lucy??? Get your plastic ring Lucy, get the plastic ring! I found myself talking to her while watching the video.

    I have been lucky to find/buy some Dream in Color Smooshy sock yarn. It is heaven! I have knitted myself up the most lovely socks. Thanks Wendy for letting us know your wonderful finds!!


    P.S. I’m patiently waiting for your patterns not to fly of the Loopy’s shelves so dang fast. Everytime I check in, they are looooooong gone.

  42. That is too funny. My cat Andre ( will go into my daughter’s room and steal her elastic hair bands. He does the same thing with them that Lucy does with the plastic ring. He also throws it up in the air and jumps up after it. Too funny!

  43. Wow! I actually guessed 19 (which I thought was insane) and you make it look easy as pie! Umm…don’t overexert yourself and try for 20…19 is a great number. : )

  44. I hate to run with the crowd. But I would definitely say silk and merino for the top one. And….probably go with alpaca for the bottom one, or baby llama.

    I’ll have to watch the Lucy video when I get home as stupid work blocks ’em. From the comments, though, it sounds as though Lucy is considerably smarter than Gizmo, who, when you throw something, justs looks at it and then looks at you, without moving, so that you have to go pick the thrown object up. And then he goes to sleep. Wait a minute…maybe he is smarter!

  45. I’m guessing silk for the top yarn & cashmere for the other one. Both look yummy.

  46. There was stuff on the floor? I was focused on Lucy. πŸ™‚ She plays fetch as well as my golden retrievers. They bring the ball back–when the mood takes them.
    The Heart socks are great.

  47. Wendy in Cambridge says:

    That superstar Lucy continues to shine!

    The Heidi socks are lovely. I especially like the color.

  48. Loved the video of Lucy, despite having to watch it without sound, as a teen-age son has temporarily borrowed my speakers.
    I think my guess for the sock count was way off but it was still great fun to check on all your beautiful socks this summer. Garden Path is my favorite.
    And your house looks lived in, by someone with interesting hobbies.
    Lucy is the cutest!

  49. I think my blood pressure went down about twenty points just watching Lucy play. Thanks so much for the fun break.

  50. Pretty heart socks! What a nice remembrance. My guess for the mystery yarn? Wool and silk for the first one and wool and alpaca for the second.

  51. my mimi loves to play “fetch” with hair elastics…she will bring them to me from all over the house, just so i will throw them!
    i also love the heart socks! my birthday is super close to valentine’s day, so anything with hearts is close to mine! and white zinfandel for the yarn name…pretty much perfect! πŸ˜‰
    thanks for keeping us up to date even though you aren’t feeling 100%–we

  52. the top yarn looks like merino/tencel to me and the bottom one looks like merino/angora (though the picture is a bit blurry, and it could be alpaca)

  53. My Joey cat will play fetch with Q-tips and twisty ties! Lucy is adorable and looks SO soft!!!

  54. My Options don’t loosen either, but I keep a small piece — about 1″ square — of rubber in the kit. I use it to grip the needle when I’m tightening it. The piece I have is from an air mattress repair kit; I also have a large sheet of rubbery stuff that is meant to grip the too-tight-to-loosen-easily lid of a jar.

  55. I’d guess tencel on top and alpaca on the bottom, but I’d really have to touch them to say for sure!

  56. I would have to say Tencel for the top and alpaca on the bottom. Though I would have to sniff the top one to tell, silk has a very distinctive smell that can’t disappear, especially if you get it wet.

  57. Lovely colors for the mystery yarn. I would say that the top one has a bit of bamboo or silk (for the lustre) and that the bottom one has a bit of angora or cashmere (my gut told me angora, but my gut is often wrong about knitting).

    These pictures make want to go look at Two Pointy Sticks. I love the pictures of her yarn and there are quite a few showing how the colors look with different fibers.