Thursday, September 24, 2015

A good day, yesterday.

The tour group had already reached Kathy’s Knits when I got there yesterday at the starting time. They were at the end of what had clearly been a very successful trip. All were resolved not to buy any more yarn, but Kathy’s brilliant stock was too much for them. I must spend more time there.

It was wonderful meeting Pattie, and seeing Maureen again. Remembering our earlier Edinburgh yarn crawl, some years ago (early ’07 is likely), I realised that she was the very woman who had suggested over coffee that I knit Sam the Ram as my entry in that year’s Strathardle Highland Gathering. The category was “knitted toy”, and she rightly said that Sam was a show-off piece who would catch the judges’ eyes. And I won not only the category, but the Glenisla Shield for the best handiwork in any category.

Patti had knitted a catnip mouse for Perdita, by which she was enchanted.

And Maureen (whose knitting, I am sure, had impressed them even at Jamieson & Smith) gave me a magnetic pin for use in Portuguese knitting and a beautiful Fair Isle cowl-neck warmer. She was wearing Meg’s cardigan from the cover of  “Knitting” and a vest by Joyce Williams from “Sweaters from Camp”. (Unaccountably I can’t find the latter book to verify.)

I don’t deserve such friends.

Amy thought she remembered me from Camp Stitches ’99. She said she is going to lead a group to Iceland next year. That’s one for everybody’s wish list.


Greek Helen sent this picture of a pocket square close up. I think that’s probably my grandson Joe, the bride’s younger brother. Good — but the best pocket square wearers, including the bridegroom, achieved visible corners.


I am well engaged with my first Dunfallandy square and having an absolutely wonderful time. It’s very fiddly and great fun. It’s getting a bit faster as I learn the code — I can now toss off a T4k2togR, for instance, without turning back to the glossary.

In the centre of the square, where I now am, there are some interesting horizontal cables. I wondered if this was a trick known to all Celtic cable knitters. I looked up the designer, Teresa de Roulet. I gather she invented them, or at the very least unvented. 

Google’s first offering, when I looked her up, was a family doctor in California, a pleasant-looking woman in early middle age. That can’t be the one, I thought, and looked on down the page.

But it was. Here’s her Ravelry page. Amongst other things, she offers a free tutorial on horizontal cables. I’ll have to have a look at that.


And Scotland beat Japan by a large score. As should happen — but Japan had beaten the once-mighty South Africa only a few days before. So we were all a bit nervous, and it was definitely a good day.


  1. I loved the Minions on Teresa de Roulet's Ravelry page. Thanks for the link.
    Perdita is getting big!

  2. I wish I had been able to get you to say hi to Amy from me to add to the small world stories. She was a neighbor in St. Paul and we taught a sock class together a zillion years ago. What a fun group that must have been. Someone should have styled those pocket squares for the boys!

  3. I don't know if you remember Alice Starmore's class on Celtic Knotwork? She very firmly remembered inventing Celtic cabling some time in the early 90s - about the same time as Elsebeth Lavold was coming up with "Viking Kniitting". So perhaps there is no tradition as such.
    I was also stuck by that cv - she began with a degree in literature.

  4. I had the good fortune to visit Kathy's Knits a year ago when I was in Edinburgh. It is a wonderful shop and, I understand, the LYS of a number of distinguished knitters -- which I am glad include you! More small-world additions to Mary Lou's observations: I too am a former neighbor of Amy's (she is a hero of mine) ... and I am currently visiting my mother in the town where you spent your undergraduate years. Greetings from sunny Ohio!

  5. =Tamar4:32 AM

    To return to an earlier topic, how DNA changes: I just came across Lewis Thomas's book, The Lives of a Cell, in which he notes (in 1974) that cells in some creatures are aggregates of many different smaller protozoans, and viruses pass through and leave behind some bits of DNA, some of which stay and become part of the cell's DNA. So there's one mechanism.