Sunday, October 31, 2010

Barbara, your experience with the Interweave Holiday issue this year was exactly mine last year. I was in my wonderful LYS – K1 Yarns, too little visited these days – buying, as I remember, a Christmas present for a granddaughter. There was the magazine, I’d heard of it, I picked it up, and like you, only discovered at the till what I’d let myself in for, price-wise. And I didn’t feel, subsequently, that it had added anything of use to my own mental pile of presents-that-might-be-knit-if-I-had-more-time.

In odd moments yesterday, striding about between shops on Broughton Street, for instance, I tried to think of something other than a paperback book that Franklin’s lovely cover could be used to cover. Without success. It looks too big for a mobile phone.

As hoped, I finished the main patterning of the Amedro shawl yesterday, and started picking up stitches for the top edging. The plan had been to take Sunday for the Japanese hat, but I can’t stop at a moment as exciting as this. The picking-up is particularly easy – a feature I had forgotten – because you just steam along picking up everything in sight, and then reduce to 177 sts-per-wing on the next row.

Much easier than trying to hit a precise target while picking-up, a process I always find stressful. Easier, at least, if one winds up with more than 177 stitches. We shall soon see.

The other major issue in life, my printer problem, would be too boring to write about were it not that knitting is peripherally involved.

You remember that jabot I knit for James? And how, to be properly turned out in highland dress, he needs a Montrose jacket to wear it with? We went to Kinloch Anderson in the summer, hoping to get him measured for one, but it turned out that you can’t be measured for a Montrose jacket without your kilt.

They gave him a form to take back to Beijing so that a Chinese tailor could measure him. He has only just now had it done – too late, surely, for St Andrew’s Night this year. I need to print it out and take it to K.A. He can go in for a fitting when he is here for Christmas.

You also remember that I recently broke a vital Little Plastic Piece off my printer. I have tried superglue. It didn’t work. Yesterday we had a nice long email from Rachel about this and that. I knew my husband would want to read it, so I tried tying the printer together – and it worked!

But this morning it won’t print James’s measurements. (It looks very loose in that picture. I've tightened it.)

There are work-arounds. I can send the measurements to our neighbours downstairs for printing, for instance. But it’s sort of depressing.


An often-amusing feature of the Saturday Financial Times is their “Lunch with the FT”. A wide range of people (we’ve had both Michael Caine and Larry Gagosian recently) are invited for lunch and a chat. The guest chooses the venue for lunch, the FT pays.

Yesterday it was Bill Gates. The choice was a pleasant but modest-sounding spot across the street from his office. At the end:

“I drink up my coffee and ask for the bill. As I produce my credit card, Gates looks slightly amused. ‘You’re sure you want to pay for this?’ he says. ‘I’ve got money.’”


  1. Anonymous11:23 AM

    Hello Jean! I loved Franklin's little blue design for a book cover and also did not want to use it for its intended purpose. I thought I'd stitch up the sides and install a zip for a clutch, maybe add a small loop for a handle.
    I'm appreciative of your writing and knitting. Til we meet again- Marilyn from Minnesota

  2. Be careful with that loose talk about printer cartridges -- much in the news this morning.

  3. One of the things I really like about Bill Gates is his humility, not to mention his commitment to making the world a better place.

  4. Franklin's shawl pattern looks very special. I wondered what you thought about Jared Flood's recent designs - and, indeed, his new yarn, Shelter. The photography is always so tempting on that sight.

  5. Being a Seattleite now, if I may call myself that, I like that clip about Bill Gates.