Monday, March 02, 2015

This week promises well, full of event but devoid of medical appts. And it begins with the drop of another digit in my Lenten weight. The weigh-in on Ash Wednesday was particularly horrendous which of course is a great morale-booster now.

Ireland beat England in a thriller. Everything seemed so much better than the match in Edinburgh the day before – the passion and commitment and skill of the players, the total involvement of the many thousands of people in the stadium. Rachel phoned in the evening – she had had a miserable weekend rugby-wise. Living as she does in a nest of Englishmen whom she loves, all devoted rugby fans, an Irish victory was no comfort to her. And the teetotal life is proving difficult, although it is Rachel's single-minded devotion to Lenten abstinence which inspires all the rest of us.

She has arranged to take the week off work while my husband is in London and I in Athens, so that should be fine. And Alexander, having driven my husband down, will stay there. I didn't know that until we saw them on Saturday. I thought maybe he was going to make two round trips. I had feared that too much of the burden would fall on James' wife Cathy. My husband has to stay with them in Sydenham because Rachel's house doesn't have a ground-floor lavatory. But clearly they have all been thinking hard and spreading the load.

I hope they can get him to the “Made in China” show in Dulwich, previously mentioned here – the Gallery has commissioned a Chinese fake of one of their pictures, and hung it in place of the original. Visitors are invited to spot it. I'm sure my husband will succeed, if they can get him a wheelchair and drive him to the door. Dulwich is a nice place to go, anyway, and they do lunch.


I finished the front flap of Archie's sweater, and have made a good start on hemming it. I don't want to let all the sewing pile up to be done at the end. That's how things wind up in the UFO pile. I'll have to wind another skein of madelinetosh Composition Book Grey before I can knit the remaining (back) flap, so probably won't get much actual knitting done today. That will leave four whole skeins over. I can't remember bow I calculated how many to buy, but I clearly didn't do a very good job of it.

The neck: Thank you, Tamar, for your continued interest in this rather tedious subject.

It occurred to me during Mass yesterday – always a good time for reflection – that it would be possible to take the instruction “begin at the centre neck edge” au pied de la lettre. The two ribbed panels for the buttons and the buttonholes of course overlap completely. So the actual centre neck edge is in the middle of those panels. The best I can say of the photographs is that that solution is not ruled out. It would mean that the edging wouldn't overlap – the ends of it would be adjacent in the rare event of the sweater being worn fully buttoned up.

From Zite this morning: a scheme for renting a Jacob's sheep for £60 a year. They live – the sheep do – in the south of England. Renters will be sent enough wool for a jumper, and can buy extra for a larger jumper. The money will go to a good cause, the Teenage Cancer Trust. Jacob's wool is, I am afraid, scratchy (see yesterday) but they say a certain measure of lamb's wool from a neighbouring farm will be spun in for softness. It all sounds rather nice and well-intentioned and amateur. Here's the link.


  1. I have been thinking about the neck of this sweater too, and it is not tedious - it is these fiddly details that keep our brains ticking over. I have not knittied anything with this type of neck, but have knitted several with the front placket, where the stitches are picked up and a collar knitted on. In those ones, I was told to cast off half the placket, and then work on and knit up from there to the end, then turn and cast off the same number at the other arm of the placket. The theory was that the placket overlapped completely, and the collar was edge to edge. On a chubby little toddler neck the theory was never put to the test - he didn't keep still long enough for me to do the buttons up, but it looked right. when it was fresh from the needles!

  2. Anonymous10:59 AM

    The Dulwich Gallery has wheelchairs for the use of visitors. If you take a look on their website it tells you how to book one. If a wheelchair is needed for general use on other excursions they can be loaned from the Red Cross (a modest amount is payable). If a stalwart person is needed to do the manoeuvering, often they can arrange for a volunteer, just get in touch, giving as much notice as you can. You can look on the website for the nearest convenient location from which to reserve and collect the chair (near London) or get in touch with the local office in Edinburgh and ask them to advise and liase.

    Hope this helps, Helen

  3. I got hold of some Jacob roving for spinning when I lived in Wiltshire fifteen years ago. I spun it and knitted a jumper for my Mum (worsted weight I recall).

    It was lovely and soft, but still a little crisp. Scratchy by no means, Mum loves to wear it at the farm in winter.

  4. Jean, I can't remember exactly, butnis Archie's sweater the henley from Knits Men Want? If so, there are some good photos on Ravelry which show your overlap solution, and then neckband picked up after.