My current work in progress:

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


Pattern Ready

Thanks for all your nice comments about Tracy’s Shawl. I am happy to report that I have finished the pattern, my tech-editor has had a go at it and fixed my boo-boos, and it is now available, in pdf format, here. It is also linked to from my Free Patterns Page.

As you can see, Lucy was still enamored with it when I did the “official” photo shoot.

I am working on a non-bloggable project right now, but I’ll be back on Thursday with a report on the start of my Camp Loopy project.

The Great Condo Clear Out Update

It has been close to three weeks since I embarked on the Great Condo Clear-Out of 2011 and I am pleased to say that so far I have not lapsed back into my old slovenly ways.

I have made a point to deal with the mail when I get it, shredding the shreddables, tossing the tossables, and filing the filables instead of dropping the stack of mail on my poor little writing desk.

When I pull a knitting book out of the bookcase to look at, I put it back in the bookcase when I am done. Stunning, no?

When I finish doing laundry, I immediately put everything away.

Et cetera.

These are not difficult concepts to master, yet I have always had trouble with them. I think the main issue is that I am inherently lazy. 😉

But I’ve heard that if you do something for a month, that is what it takes to make it a routine. So I’m more than halfway there.

I still have some work to do, but I am saving it for the next holiday weekend. Independence Day is a Monday and I have leave scheduled for Thursday and Friday of the preceding week, so I’ll have a 5-day weekend. That should be more than enough time to deal with what is left. I estimate that I’ve done 75% of the work. So maybe I’ll have time to put some yarn stash up for sale on Ravelry then.

I have to thank Crazy Aunt Purl for giving me the shove I needed to de-clutter my life. Laurie has discussed de-cluttering and simplifying on her blog a number of times, and I am following her very good example.

Seeing my place all tidy and clean makes me very very happy. And I am even remembering where I put everything. 😉

Lucy Sez

“This shawl has been given the Ragdoll Seal of Approval!”


  1. Helena M says:

    you sound like the Flylady!! Check out
    i don’t work for her – just a fan! lol

    love the tracey shawl btw!

  2. Sounds like the decluttering has been amazing for you. I want to love the idea, but I am still too in love with stuff. I feel like this is a disease and I hope it runs its course soon!

  3. Leslie F says:

    I am sure that you are not alone in the “inherently lazy” category! I think it is actually more truthful, though, to say that you are maxed out in activities…

    Or, at least that is my reasoning!

    Congratuations on the de-cluttering. It is my thin thread of inspiration…

  4. Kristine M. says:

    Now you’ve inspired me to declutter & tidy up this summer. Thank you!

  5. Thank you for the lovely pattern. We just emptied our house to sell it. Packed about 2/3s of the stuff, pictures off the walls. I find it very relaxing and may need to declutter more as we unpack.

  6. Lynne S. says:

    I admire your decluttering – feels really good, doesn’t it? I am nearly at the psychological critical mass where I tip over the edge and dig in, instead of feeling bad about not doing it. You’ve just nudged me closer to the brink!

    Belatedly, the Tracy shawl is beautiful. And it struck me all over again how gorgeous Lucy is.

    I enjoy your posts. (You always sound so together.)

  7. hmm… perhaps you could swing by and help me find the missing “second ball of yarn” so that I can finish my current pair of socks? I’m looking for all available organizing tips, but movtivation is also needed…

  8. I’d love to declutter too, but I’m a hoarder at heart & can’t bear the thought of getting rid of anything. Except the mail, that is.

  9. I am also ‘inherently lazy’… My office & spare room are both in desperate need of decluttering – I think that I would feel much less stressed if I could just get it done. Now I just need to find the motivation to do it! Thanks for getting me closer to doing it!

  10. anne marie in philly says:

    and the “ragdoll seal of approval” is better than the good housekeeping seal any day!

  11. My problem isn’t putting things away. There are gremlins in my house who keep bringing in more yarn. Then the yarn multiplies. When I come home from work, there’s more! I turn my back, and there’s more!

  12. Gail Rector says:

    Could it be that the continuing fascination is that the pattern looks a bit like paw prints?

  13. Lovely shawl…! I have been working on de-cluttering and downsizing for years. It does take well-worth-the-time. And it is those simple concepts that can make our lives more sane and yet at times avoided. Sometimes it is fun being lazy, like time off. Then after my fun, I go back and start over.

  14. Ginger Klein says:

    Love the shawl and the colorway. But I really think this is one of the best Lucy pictures ever!

  15. Wendy –
    Thanks so very, very much for this lovely shawl called, “Tracy’s Shawl. I think it is one of the prettiest you have dreamed up. It is so gorgeous. Thanks for your kind gift,

    Happy designing, Deb from MN

  16. “inherently lazy”? it is not possible to do all the things you do; work, knit public projects, knit stealth projects, commute, eat, sleep, cook, pay bills, clean the cat litter, have a social life, travel, blog regularly and write books and turn out a prodigious amount of finished product and be lazy. you might just hate paperwork. Good luck with the new regimen.

    BTW – Guess where I bought the Toe Up in A Box book? Costco! Just doing my part to make you a mass market sensation.

  17. Thank you for your generosity with the Tracy Shawl pattern. It is beautiful. You are very talented.
    I really love the Ragdoll Seal of Approval and Lucy of course.

  18. RustyBird says:

    Lucy’s ears match the shawl points in her “seal of approval” photo.

  19. That shawl is truly beautiful. just breathtaking.

  20. Dear Wendy,
    I have been doing some of the de littering as well. I am telling myself that to putnsomething away or keep something tidy takes less time now than later. I am making some progress. 1 Month…..I still have a ways to go. Thank you for sharing. I think Lucy likes the color od the shawl….it is beautiful.

  21. Just an update to the previous e-mail….the spell check changed decluttering to de littering very interesting.

  22. I received this incredible gift today, and was totally blown away by its beauty. Thank you, Wendy! I feel very lucky to work with you and to know you.

  23. !! Wonderful pattern and beautiful color…

    greetings from Jolanda

  24. Like my grandma says, “don’t put it down, put it away”. Simple to understand, difficult to achieve.

  25. Thank you so much for the lovely pattern! You’re a very generous lady. Thanks also to your tech editor, who did such a quick job of checking the pattern.
    toni in florida´s last blog post ..Quickie with pickies

  26. You’re not inherently lazy. You’d just rather knit. I can understand.

  27. Liz in Missouri says:

    The shawl pattern is just lovely – as is Lucy, the model. She looks so well in yarn – don’t you think?
    Ah – yes – the decluttering! I just moved from a house into a dublex, losing one bedroom and about half the square footage. I’m remembering everyday how items out of place in a small area make EVERYTHING look messy. But the yard sale is looming on the horizon and the mantra continues – “Be Ruthless! Be Ruthless! Be Ruthless!”
    We do the best we can, don’t we?

  28. That last picture of Lucy on the Tracy shawl is probably the most relaxed I have ever seen her! I think she really does love this shawl; I should knit one now for my kitties too, lol.

  29. What a gorgeous shawl! How generous of you to offer this pattern as a freebie. Thank you!
    Isabelle´s last blog post ..A huge thank you

  30. Decluttering is truely exhilerating, So I can’t spell today. But Good for you, my hubby is finally getting this concept after having to clean a massive mess that I’ve been at him to do. with a move coming soon he is realizing that one does not need to keep everything.

    Love the pattern and I hope to get to knit is soon but first, I have to finish my citron.

  31. Thanks for the free pattern!

  32. WOW Ragdoll Seal – it must be very awesome 🙂 Thank you Lucy for all your tireless supervision.

  33. Oh boy, the Ragdoll Seal of Approval! I’ve downloaded the pattern; where do I pick up my Ragdoll? Truly, you’ll have to knit a shawlette in this pattern & yarn, just for Miss Lucy — or advise the recipient not to wear it when visiting you! She’d likely wind up wearing a shawl and a cat…

  34. I was also inspired by Crazy Aunt Purl to do some decluttering over the past few weekends. It feels great to make progress.

    The shawl, and Lucy, are beautiful.
    Bethany´s last blog post ..We Dyed Yarn

  35. Lucy complements that shawl perfectly (though I could say that about pretty much anything with her!)

    I’m impressed with your continued success at managing clutter. I am somewhat of an aspirational declutterer/organized person. Someday I will get there!
    Mary´s last blog post ..Greys

  36. Wendy, this shawl is just spectacular. I have tried, without success, to locate the exact color of yarn because it is so “me” but have found it to be sold out until the factory re-opens, over 30 days from now. This will be an interesting exercise in patience for a very non-patient woman! That has not, however, stopped me from buying other colors. 😉 I bought one color (supposedly!) for Tracy’s Shawl and the other for the Seriously Simple Shawl. (Hope I remembered that name correctly!) I say “supposedly” because no one really knows how a lot of yarn will end up!

    And I have to say that I am pea-green with envy, and so very impressed, with your de-cluttering program. Please come stay with me for about a month. I am sure we can manage the de-cluttering at my house in that period of time, and I have 2 cats that you could use to star in your daily knitting updates. I’ll even let you steal from my considerable stash. 🙂 No way, huh? Oh well, I can dream!

  37. One more thing Wendy. You’re NOT lazy. You just don’t like house work. Big difference! 🙂

  38. Seems like the cat has good taste 😉