Wednesday, June 21, 2006

After yesterday’s little flurry of excitement, all has returned to gloom without (weather-wise) and nothing-very-newsworthy, within.

Alexander read yesterday’s entry, and has given me a brief tutorial in the art of bidding on eBay. He agrees with my friend Helen that last-minute “sniping” is a valuable technique. I had been so impressed with the way one can lodge a bid and then let the eBay software do the bidding, without betraying one’s maximum to one’s opponents, that I hadn’t really thought it through. I will henceforth try to be shrewd like a fox, although I wonder if my nerves are entirely up to it. Alexander says he often bids in the last 10 seconds.

I finished seaming the shrug and have knit the ribbed cuff on one sleeve. I’m not entirely happy with it. I could comfortably pick up only 64 stitches, not the 78 required; and I was using slightly smaller-gauge dp’s than specified – it still looks big, doesn’t pull in properly. Even with silk, I hope that blocking will work at least modified wonders.

Esther, I got out my copy of “Knitting in the Old Way” after reading your comment yesterday. What a good book it is! I hadn’t looked at it for a long time. I’ve put it in “the box” to go to Strathardle and help with forthcoming decisions on Ketki’s gansey.

But there’s nothing on page 49 about the problem of gauge-shift when one switches from circular knitting to knitting-back-and-forth, after the armpits – although that subject is being discussed at that point in the book. Nor can I find anything at all about the “combined knitting method” you mention. I wonder if you have a later, superior edition. Could you possibly tell us what the “combined knitting method” is? I don’t think a technique is protected by the laws of copyright.


I am getting so fond of the Farmgirl that I have begun to feel faintly surprised that she never gets around to talking about her knitting. I simply must have the Oriental garden tool she describes.

I got this (in its entirety) from James in Beijing yesterday. He is referring to his daughter Rachel (who recently made her First Holy Communion), not his sister. Lorna, at least, will be amused:

"Rachel has been having Rugby lessons with Rory Underwood and Martin Johnson. They're supposed to be famous, but I've never heard of them -- have you? "

I forwarded it to London. Alexander wonders if he’s ever heard of Babe Ruth.

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