Sunday, June 17, 2007

Thank you for the many kind messages about the death of my friend Margot.

The funeral is not until June 28 – the undertakers of Birmingham are very busy just now, I was told. Is that possible? We will be in London then; I will leave my husband to look at art by himself for a day. From there, it is a easy day trip by train and one which should still feel familiar.

I spoke yesterday to the one of Margot's daughters I know best, the one Rachel’s age. There is to be an all-singing all-dancing ecumenical service with only very slight religious overtones, followed by an eco-friendly burial somewhere near Evesham, followed by a party at home. Margot was a Roman Catholic of very Advanced Views.

We are very fortunate, I feel, my husband and I, in knowing where we will be buried, namely in the little Tayside burial ground on the road between our house and the village. There is bound to be a certain amount of delay and confusion on the Day of Judgement; it will be good to see the old place again.

Back to knitting

I am now knitting Sam’s feet, and it’s pretty boring. I’m working on the third.

There’s more grafting-of-ribbing to come, and I’m going to try the system Ann (yet another) recommended day before yesterday: Lucy Neatby's chimney. I will have to knit a completely separate little ribbed swatch for myself and try it and see if I can understand what I’m doing. When the final bits of Sam’s legs are attached to his body, there will be a considerably unequal number of stitches on either side, and the only hope of success will lie in an actual grasp of what I’m trying to do.

I am also winding the Yarn Yard lace yarn, and loving it. I enjoy the process, for getting acquainted with the yarn. It’s more cobweb than lace-weight, I now think, but plyed and strong, unlike Jamieson & Smith cobweb. I took this picture yesterday morning; I’ve done more winding since then. In the ball, the yarn appears to be solid-coloured.

The first step in the process was to finish off the yarn on my swift, which had been there a long time. The next step was to find the rest of that set of yarn in my stash. The search took an unusual length of time – I know my stash well, and can usually find what I want quickly -- and during it I found:

a) a bag of kapok which may be enough to stuff Sam;

b) and some lovely Lorna’s Laces Shepherd’s Sport yarn, machine washable, about which I had completely forgotten. I can’t even remember what I once knit with it -- the fact that there are different-sized oddballs as well as complete skeins, means I must have knit something.

But for now I’m winding the yarn by hand anyway. The skein is a bit too big for the swift, at least for the time being.


  1. Anonymous12:17 PM

    I hate to be a wet blanket, but I would be a bit chary of putting kapok inside anything other that closely woven cotton - I fear it might leak out. Not a problem if it is merely for exhibition purposes, but I am assuming you are not going to dismantle Sam after you have put so much good work into him!

  2. This tutorial on grafting ribbing might be of use. I've not tried it, but it looks fairly detailed.


  3. I think it's the Alice Keck Park Memorial Gardens in Santa Barbara that has beautiful kapok trees growing through it. Lovely flowers, the kapok look like it could work it's way through steel mesh! I think the wool or polyfill would be more cuddly...

  4. Jean,
    The cobweb yarn is beautiful! I am afraid that I have gotten addicted to lace knitting now. I am about to start the "Rose of England" in Kinzel's Modern lace knitting. I figure it will make good summer knitting.