My current work in progress:

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


Questions! And Maybe Some Answers!

Y’all have asked a lot of questions over the past couple of days. πŸ™‚

The most frequent question asked about yesterday’s post was where to get the knitting symbols font. Now, if you questioners had read instead of skimmed, you would have seen that I plainly said in yesterday’s post that I had talked about the fonts a couple of days earlier. πŸ˜‰ The info about and the link to the fonts is in this post.

There was a question about why I don’t create charts in Excel. I do, particularly for large projects, like lace shawls. But I create my sock patterns in Word, and my experience is that a Word table works much better and is far more predictable than an imported Excel table.

Your mileage may vary.

Back to my work in progress.

There have been some questions about the yarn I am using — Tilli Tomas Demi-Plie silk. Is it worth the money? As I have no recollection of how much I paid for it, I cannot answer that. πŸ˜‰ But I can tell you that it is lovely yarn. Very, very nice to knit.

Also some blocking questions. I did not block my work in progress before I photographed it the other day, but I did spent quite a lot of time artfully arranging it and stretching it out so it would look its best before photographing it.

This does need to be blocked. This is what it looks like in its unblocked state.

You can wet-block silk, but what I will do is block it with my steam iron. Because it is a simple shape, a rectangle, I can do that. And carefully steaming the silk, in my experience, works. That is actually how I blocked the Midnight Lace Stole I just finished.

Because my yarn is a bit heavier than the yarn called for in the pattern, I’m not concerned with stretching the piece out to make it as large as possible. All I want to do is to stretch it enough to open up the lace and steam it to set it.

Okay, gotta go knit. And cater to the little princess.


  1. Okay, I actually downloaded the fonts from your post months ago when you talked about them! But since we’re supposed to be asking random questions, what kind of steam iron do you have? :-p

    Tammy/DarthKnitters last blog post..Annual Peanut Brittle Makin’ Days – 2008

  2. I’ve been MIA for a while, but HOLY CRAP that new project is a stunner! That yarn looks GORGEOUS and I really like the way it looks in the photos now, too πŸ™‚

    TheSockKnitters last blog post..New Art!

  3. Your shawl is beautiful.
    And I couldn’t agree more with you about charts in Excel. Sometimes my most basic tables get wonky, let alone charts.

  4. Here’s a random question: Do you realize how rude you come across? Not everyone reads your blog daily. Perhaps someone ran across the post and had a question. Your ” if you questioners had read instead of skimmed, you would have seen that I plainly said in yesterday’s post …..” even if it was followed by a smiley face was just plain uncalled for. But it’s your blog so you can be as odious as you want.

  5. Well, following Jennifer is obviously going to take tact and a generous attitude…

    I’m pleased to see that you continue to cater to Princess Lucy. We’re missing the purr machine big time around here – I’m hopeful of dragging the husband to the shelter this weekend or next. He needs somebody to look after (and to look after him) while I’m at work. Please snuggle your nose into her tummy for me – I miss that sort of thing.

    The shawl is looking lovely.

  6. Excuse me Jennifer, do you know how rude you sound? By no means is Wendy ever rude. She is a very giving and generous person. If people really read the blog instead of just skimming, they would not have to ask that question. It is easy enough to go back a couple of post to check it out, you do not have to read daily, if you desire not to.

  7. The lace is very beautiful!

    Mea culpa on the skimming, but my skimming was soooo bad, I read “excel” for “word” because I’ve always charted in excel. (my brain goes into a microsoft fog) Word is going to be so much better. Thanks for the tutorial!

    pdxknitteratis last blog post..I’m a winner!

  8. LOL I keep saying I don’t create my own patterns cause the charts would be hard. Guess after reading your post from yesterday I will give it a go. Thanks for breaking it down and not so scary hard looking!

  9. The new shawl is gorgeous! Glad you are going to knit and cater to Lucy, but ahem, but the look on that precious little kitty face I think you might be catering and then knitting.

    Kim B.s last blog post..These Socks Are Knit for Walkin’…

  10. See? This is the trouble with skimming. Jennifer skimmed THIS post and assumed I was expecting people to remember a post from two days ago. I wrote in this post that the answer was in the same post people posted the questions to, but apparently she skimmed over that. There has been humorous ribbing about “skimmers” in the knit-blog world in the past. That’s what this was meant to be. Hence the smiley face πŸ™‚

    Wendys last blog post..Questions! And Maybe Some Answers!

  11. Alice in Richmond says:


    I think the Demi Plie would be SO worth it. It is calling my name…..

  12. I do have to give Jennifer props for using the word “odious.” I haven’t seen that word used for a long time; good to know it hasn’t gone MIA. It is a very descriptive term, although completely inappropriate to apply to Wendy in any context. Jennifer seems to have gotten up on the wrong side of her knitting today. (I marveled at the questions on yesterday’s post asking where to get the fonts, apparently having *skimmed* a bit more carefully than some.)

    kmkats last blog post..Taylor Mali: for the teachers.

  13. Wendy totally off topic, but have you read the knitty blog lately? You may want to take a peek if you already haven’t!

  14. You mean we aren’t supposed to have every post memorized by heart? What will I do with my days? πŸ˜‰
    Thanks again for the great tutorial and the shawl looks awesome!

    Julie Es last blog post..Shop update

  15. Thank you for posting that link…I don’t know how I ever would have found it what with my skimming πŸ™‚

    Aimees last blog

  16. Doesn’t make any difference what the yarn cost…that shawl is so worth it.

    Give Lucy an extra cuddle for me.

  17. all this talk about skimming makes me want some milk.
    or fresh whipped cream.
    or cheese. mmm cheese.
    plus the shawl makes me wanna cuddle.

  18. I’m sorry, where did you say the fonts came from πŸ˜›

    Actually, I use them and I like them a lot – thank you for pointing them out to me. I’m also with Tammy, what kind of steamer do you use? I was actually thinking about one on the train home tonight.

    Hugs and cuddles to Lucy πŸ™‚

    Karens last blog post..

  19. I think I missed where to get the symbols?? πŸ˜‰

    Deineras last blog post..I’m just curious

  20. Some great tips in the last couple of posts. I am lookng forward to playing around with the chart idea.

  21. The comments have totally made me forget my own comment. I think I need to take a moment to move past that and re-focus on the post.

    OK, I’m back. Watching the growth and development of this lace has been quite enjoyable. I also love the charting information you have been sharing. It helps re-awaken my lace-designing-mini-fantasy-world.

    Sarahs last blog post..It Fits!

  22. Me likey! Then again, I have a hard time coming up with something you’ve done that I haven’t ;-P


    It’s your soapbox, and you can say what you want to..
    Say what you want to!
    You’d say whatever too, if it was your blog!!!!

    (The last line still needs a bit of work)

    Aren’t emoticons great?

    Megan S.s last blog post..We Have A Winner!!

  23. ahmcguffin says:

    Thanks for reminding me to go back to your link to the knitting symbols. I tried it before and couldn’t get the link to work for me, sometimes the intertubes get a few kinks in them. But it worked this time. Thanks for sharing! Your projects are always so wonderful to see. And some days I just check to see what pictures of delightful Princess Lucy you have posted.

    Now I guess it’s up to me to install them and try to get some patterns put into PDF form an onto a certain pay for patterns site for 3 knitters who I see at one of my local yarns shops, who only buy patterns on-line and refuse to let me print out patterns and hand them to them. Maybe I’ll just check some of my favorite blogs, knit some and head to work.

    What is Princess Lucy’s favorite food?

  24. Admit it — you picked that colorway because it so beautifully matches Lucy’s coat. . .

    Carols last blog post..Extreme knitting

  25. I’m curious…does the silk, um, smell funky when you steam it? I’ve had, uh, issues with silk in the past. Got got in the rain once with a silk something or other. I had to take a cab home. Couldn’t risk being thrown off the streetcar because of the…odor.

    Brigittes last blog post..Hearts Tunic

  26. Oh Wendy, aren’t people fun?
    Lucy, about your catnip quilt, is the nip loose inside or do you think the batting was infused with the essence? I’d like to make one for Beau and Andrew but fear they will tear it to shreds. They are NOT as dainty as you.

    miss sandras last blog post..Thanksgiving 2008

  27. It will be interesting to see if the silk shawl will be comfy for your “warm” self. It certainly is beautiful!

    Barbara-Kays last blog post..Mother’s Christmas diplomacy

  28. And I see Little Blue is making an appearance as well!!

    Danieles last blog post..Random Cyber Monday with Candy Corn

  29. Cute Cute! I’m completely lost on blocking, so I’ll be googling that now. (oh, the sad extent of my noobism)
    You’re very talented!

    Cookis last blog post..null

  30. Thanks for the post. Do you ever have problems sending charts to other people who don’t have the font downloaded? I sent a chart I made to my hubby and asked him to print it out (I was on my un-networked laptop) and the chart was filled with letters instead of symbols! Is there a way to convert the chart into a picture (jpg, etc) so the symbols will never change? Love skimming your blog!

    Elises last blog post..Thrift Store Yarn Finds

  31. I’ve been having problems with a pattern I’ve been working on (a row took me almost 1.5 hours to do this morning), because it was written out. I plan on downloading the fonts today and seeing if I can clean up some of my problems with a bit of judicious charting!

    Seanna Leas last blog post..Pour, oh pour the pirate sherry (random brain edition)

  32. Wendy,
    Thank you for the chart and font info-am looking forward to trying it. Always enjoy the blog.

  33. I love your cat, I had to laugh to myself about the pillow “No Outfit is Complete Without Cat Hair.” I have the same pillow and I have a 3 year old long haired Himalayan named Slinkie I also have a 3 year old ginger named Reeses. Your cat is gorgeous!!!

    LeenieBeenies last blog post..Cable knits