Tuesday, March 09, 2010

The hat is finished, too. I’m rather pleased with it. The doubled yarn used throughout produces a nice, helmet-like effect. It should get to Beijing just in time for the end of winter, rather like Joe and his sweater. I'm getting better at pompoms, although I will never love them.

So I’m project-less, except for the socks. Very odd feeling. Usually, at this stage, I have something I’m aching to get started on. Today, the best I can do is sort the Koigu again and start swatching.

As it happens, my needles were even more empty on January 1, and every stitch I’ve knit in ’10 is, for the moment, still here in the house. Here they all are, piled up, along with yarn snatched at random from the stash cupboard for the photo op: perhaps 1/5 of the total, probably less.

It gives some idea of the scale of the job, and of the need for my yarn fast.

The spring Knitter’s turned up here yesterday. What is it about Knitter’s? I’m always glad to see it on the mat, but for dull, it takes all the prizes. It’s nice to have Perri Klass back.

There is one interesting thing, though: editor Rick Mondragon’s pattern “Cool Spectrum” on page 44. The idea is to take three strands of yarn, all the same colour at the beginning, and change one strand at a time as the work progresses so that colours merge one into another. Indeed, “Merging Colors” is the name Candace Eisner Strick uses – has used for years – for her own patterns and custom-dyed yarns using precisely this idea.

Candace is a friend. She didn’t know about Rick’s pattern until I emailed her yesterday.

It’s an idea that could have occurred anywhere to anyone, and obviously did occur spontaneously to Rick. But I am surprised that in the considerable time that must elapse between the dawn of an idea and the publication of a pattern, no one at Knitter’s thought of Candace’ work. She has had patterns published in the magazine – there was a year when the Mitred Mozart (Knitter’s #68) was the pattern that everyone was knitting. I got nearly 90,000 hits just now when I google’d it. And she has taught at Camp Stitches. That’s how we met, in her Bavarian Travelling Stitch class on Lake George in ’99, oh! happy memory.

So I think Knitter's might have managed a nod in her direction.

Still silence from the Schoolhouse. My email to them has now worked its way well down my Googlemail page. It will be buried even deeper on their computers, if it arrived, as two business days and a weekend have since elapsed. I’ll write again today, and if that produces nothing, I may well take you up on your kind offer to phone, Mary Lou. All you’d need is the order number and the bald fact that I got the wrong book.

(Follow the link to Mary Lou’s web page for a delicious knitting-and-chamber-music anecdote.)


  1. Anonymous2:44 PM

    Projectless? Projectless??? You could do a second Princess... :) Shall I send you my started one?

  2. That idea of merging colours is something I used very successfully in some rugs I wove 25 years ago when we were in Bhutan. No knitting magazines there!

  3. Jean, if we ever manage another reunion I'll bring you a pom-pom maker (or maybe you already have one and still have a problem with them?)
    I always used to cut out cardboard circles, and my pom-poms were never consistent in size or shape. Now I'm guaranteed a perfect pom-pom every time. Love the hat.