Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Here we are again: Fat Tuesday. It is Rachel’s piety which has spurred us all, in recent years, to knuckling down for Lent. Ketki is celebrating her birthday today although it doesn't actually happen until tomorrow. The Greek family is going to give up meat, as Greeks do – Helen says that the supermarkets are full of food for fasting. I asked for details. It’s rather sweet – it means that people do fast. British supermarkets, which have been selling Hot Cross Buns since Boxing Day, are now stuffed with chocolate Easter eggs.

Rachel herself rang up last night, not sure she could face it. I told her it’s never quite as bad as one expects.


I have turned the final corner of Round-the-Bend, and begun attaching back to front as I knit towards the sleeve.

One of you kindly referred me to a Q.&A. in one of Meg’s newsletters, when I was beginning the back and worrying about mirror-imaging. I’ve looked at it again this morning. Some poor soul was having trouble attaching the shoulder. I think I even said I didn’t see how anyone could get that far without understanding what she was doing.

Now I do.

Her question, I’m afraid, was badly expressed: What is meant by the reverse "no sew for the shoulder seam"? What would that look like in words? I have tried everything and ripping out 8 times.

And Meg misunderstood it, and answered in terms of SSK, and even recommended the video. The video, as I have already mentioned here, skips straight from finishing the first half to the i-cord finishing of the whole.

The problem at the second shoulder has nothing to do with SSK v. slip 2 purlwise. It’s a question of origami. I’ve ripped out once – I think I’ve got it this time, but it’s too soon to feel entirely confident. I can’t imagine why it’s so hard when the first shoulder went smoothly enough, but Meg’s questioner was right – something is very difficult here.

Clearly those Zimmermanns – including Cully -- have an engineering gene that lets them see and think in three dimensions while the rest of us bump along with two.

I had a good time yesterday planning the sweaters I will knit for the Little Boys to celebrate Scotland’s utterly unexpected victory in the Calcutta Cup match this coming Sunday. They are to be ganseys, nothing terribly fancy, similar sweaters but two different patterns to keep me interested. Towards the bottom of each I will incorporate in seed stitch the wearer’s initials and “2011” and an image of the cup – and the score, if there’s room for that much information.

I also thought, as I knit peacefully along (before I got to the shoulder-attaching bit), that this sort of knitting, slow and steady, good old garter stitch, must be making inroads on my abundant collection of sock yarn. Should I go on to a Bog or a Tomten – or both?

The Schoolhouse does a leaflet for the Tomten. The Bog only turns up in a video for “Knitting Around” – where the printed instructions are full and intelligible anyway. I’ll wait until next week – after Scotland’s famous victory, I’ll probably feel like treating myself to Meg’s Guernsey pullover DVD.


  1. =Tamar1:50 PM

    Or maybe it's such a nuisance to do that they couldn't get a decent shot of the process without somebody frowning, so they left it off the video...

  2. I have written "check Calcutta Cup scores" into my planner for this coming Sunday. And to think, before I started reading your blog I didn't even know there was such a thing. I suppose it might even be possible to watch it live somewhere on the internet.

    A bog or a tomten would be great choices. And I think if EZ had been born 70 or so years later she would have gone into engineering at school rather than taking art. It would have been a sad loss for knitters.

  3. You know, after seeing Jared's adult TomTom, I have always wanted to make one for myself- but it always seemed like a daunting task to get it to actually fit me..


    I think the sweater looks adorable on kids though... maybe I'll make a little one first and then try an adult one...

  4. Gerri in St Paul3:35 PM

    Garter stitch is great at consuming yarn!

    The Tomten is in Knitting Without Tears. I knit is when I had no knitting support and didn't seem to have any trouble. Of course, that child is in college now, so perhaps memory is failing me. Maybe I didn't know I was doing it wrong but it resulted in a piece that fit a child without strangulation or pinning of limbs. The most embarrassing aspect of that project, realized as I was in the final stages had to do with yarn choice. I used *gasp* something very washable, thinking it right for a very busy mom of three. (I was not as tuned in then.) I realized in those final stitches that I had just knit a gift, of man-made fiber, for a SPINNER. Despite that, we are very good friends. :-)

  5. Anonymous3:43 PM

    Round the Bend is in my "queue". Please post any hints that you can.

  6. Anonymous4:44 PM

    Perhaps you could drape your in-progress RTB on a dress form or blocking frame, just to see it in three dimensions. As you look at the finished side in "wearing position", so to speak, you might see how you need to follow through with the second side.
    -- Gretchen

  7. Jean ... am I correct in thinking that you have a Kindle? And if so what do you think of it? I am thinking of getting one ... all help is appreciated and thanks.