Thursday, February 18, 2010

Today’s excitement is another auction sale.

We left a bid on a little picture in a local saleroom a couple of days ago. Events have unfolded since – I am being deliberately mysterious – which mean that we’re willing to up our bid a bit. Instead of doing it over the telephone, I’m going to go along with my knitting. I don’t expect to win, and I will have to be very careful not to bid against myself in the early stages. The sock should advance by a round or two.

I’ve just ordered Judy Sumner’s “Knitted Socks East and West: 30 Designs Inspired by Japanese Stitch Patterns”. She’s an old cyber-friend from KnitList days. I don’t go in for sock books – I’m happy to leave the design stuff to KF and just knit happily round and round – but there may be something of interest here on the Japanese front, and anyway, for Judy’s sake…

More sleeve last night. I found a dropped stitch, and thought I had retrieved it successfully, but the further I get away from the spot, the worse it looks. A louse has detached itself from its proper position and inserted itself into the row above. Both the gap in one row and the crowd in the other look bad. Still, I’m not going back. Duplicate stitch may be needed in the end.

I bouight PhotoShop Elements once, thinking to learn to draw circles around bits of pictures to which I wanted to draw attention, like a real grown-up Blogger. But I never mastered it. I never even installed it. In this case, a circle isn't necessary. You can see what I mean all too clearly.

The further I progress the more scared I get of setting in the sleeves. There was something in the Knitting Glossary DVD that I must try to find again – I think in the bit where they were talking about a sweater like this, three tubes joined together. Either Meg or EZ herself has a throw-away line about the hole stretching – or is it the sleeve? And what does one do about it?


Thank you for the recommendations of Henning Mankell, of whom I have never heard. I will explore, the next time I’m in Waterstone’s. And I’m pretty sure there’s a new Ruth Rendell which has been out in hardback for a while. Watching for the paperback of that can tide me over until Stieg Larsson Three makes the great leap.

Dawn, thank you for the note about “south of the river”. There was a picture in the Scotsman yesterday of young women identified as “stock traders” being silly in “carnival costumes” in the Frankfurt stock exchange. Who would have thought the Germans to be capable of such frivolity? I heard it from you first.

Tamar and Jean K. – human nature being what it is, your remarks about north and south apply, in a small way, to Kirkmichael. The road from Bridge of Cally to Pitlochry runs through the heart of the village, the church; a row of houses; the shop – there used to be two; the petrol station; the hotel; the dairy, now defunct. A turning to the left takes you southwards over the bridge to a straggle of fields and further houses, including us, and the new cemetery. People in the Village Proper look with some suspicion on the feckless lot “south of the river”.


  1. (Sister, that is) Have you really never read Henning Mankell? He is wonderful. I would suggest starting with the Kurt Wallender novels back at the beginning. The Eye of the Leopard is indeed very powerful but I think the ones set primarily in Sweden are where to start.

  2. Anonymous1:15 PM

    Jean, I'm glad you have discovered Kurt W. The BBC TV (did and may still) have a Wallender Series ... tho I resent someone else showing me what I imagine .... Elizabeth

  3. =Tamar4:51 PM

    Where there is no river, a railroad track will do ("wrong side of the tracks") or a main street.
    I remain, yrs truly, from the rude, compulsive, hyperactive north... emeritus.
    "It's amazing how much mature wisdom resembles being too tired."-Wayne Dionne

  4. I just read about the hole stretching in Knitting Workshop last night (Zimmerman is great for bedtime reading). As I recall, her point was to not panic and you tame the armhole into submission by pinning the sleeve in at the top, the bottom and one or two times in the middle. This way you can vary the rate at which the cast off stitches are attached to the rows.

  5. I want to ask Helen (sister that is) what she really thinks of The Eye of the Leopard. Following my experiences in Kenya and then what I have read about other African countries, I feel there was a lot of truth in that book. Henning Mankell has worked in Africa for many years.
    As to your sweater, yes, the mistake is very obvious - hope you can solve it satisfactorily. Things like that can annoy the creator more than the recipient.

  6. I'm assuming you're on Windows. If you look under Start>Programs> Accessories> you'll find Paint. It's a very basic graphics program but handy for resizing photos and adding simple graphics like circles and text boxes.