Saturday, February 04, 2012

Calcutta Cup Day

So here we are. It's not as cold as it was yesterday. Scotland sound dangerously like favourites: has this ever happened before? If time allows this morning, I may even go into a betting shop on Broughton St and find out what the odds are.

A friend and neighbour in Birmingham (who was also an artist of some distinction) taught me how to fill out a form in a betting shop and de-mystified the whole procedure for me.  They are not dens of iniquity, after all; not much more dangerous than pubs, and perfectly respectable. It is an accomplishment I have been grateful to him for.

He was a raconteur of distinction, too. I could flesh out the Wikipedia entry by telling you that his grandfather took the tickets, on the Fife side, for the train which famously plunged into the Tay. Or of the time when Bill was in charge of “Art:Western Europe” (as he put it) after the war.  He once had to deliver a Rembrandt to a general who was living in a railway carriage which had formerly been the luxurious nest of his German counterpart.

Bill handed it over and stood his ground. “I need a receipt, Sir.” And eventually got it.


I’ve reached the heel flap. I wonder if I’ll be able to get around the heel while watching the match this evening?

Zite came up with this interesting blog-entry in which a possessor of multiple WIPs analyses the characteristics of the things she actually finishes. Good reading, although it doesn’t touch my situation: I was effectively cured of multiple-WIPery by Greek Helen when a teenager: “What is that going to be, if you finish it?”

The simple act of keeping a record of FO’s followed (in a manila file labelled “Knitting Actually Finished”) – that concentrated the mind wonderfully. And my discovery, on the KnitList in the 90’s, of the concept of Locational WIPs has been a boon, too. One for Strathardle – that became possible once we moved from Birmingham to Edinburgh and were able to go back and forth regularly; a major one for Edinburgh; and socks constantly to hand for waiting rooms and travel.  


Thanks for the link to the Sailors’ Society, Claire. I was touched to discover that they are willing to provide both yarn and pattern – they really do want knitters to knit. And their photographs suggest that lively colours are welcome. It doesn’t matter which sailor gets the hat I intend to knit next week. Someone certainly will.

Thank you for the pointer to the Sockupied App, Bonnie. I read your message this morning on my iPad as I sat at the kitchen table with that precious first cup of coffee (in my Calcutta Cup mug, of course), and went to the App Store at once. I’ve bought the whole thing, and like it. Should I get Cat Bordhi’s ebook? I have always resisted the fancification of sock-knitting, but I wonder if there might not be something I could usefully learn about heels.


  1. I'm intrigued by the sweet tomato heel so I think I'll knit the Flutterby socks and then think about the Cat Bhordi eBook

  2. Anonymous1:48 PM

    I try to knit a pair of socks every month and have done so for many years. I knit them the way my mother did years ago (top down,heel flap, turned heel, gusset). I was always fascinated by new patterns and ways of doing the heels and even doing toe up socks. I tried them all and always found them lacking. They were just not comfortable. A couple of years ago, my friend wondered why I didn't do short row heels as they were so simple and that is the way manufactured socks are made. That simple comment about manufactured socks made me realize that the way I was making them was far more comfortable for my feet and why I didn't like store bought socks.
    Ron in Mexico

  3. Maureen in Fargo4:50 PM

    I haven't tried it yet but a number of my knitting buddies have tried the Sweet Tomato Heel and really like the fit of it. They are of mixed opinion about the usefulness of the ebook though.

  4. I bought 2 of Cat B.'s books. Couldn't understand her directions at all, even after note taking and page marking, ( this page for that instruction, that page for size, another page for actual pattern.)

    I sold both of them.

  5. My father, who knows almost nothing about knitting, said of toe-up socks, "It seems to me you should knit something in the same direction as you put it on."

  6. =Tamar7:02 AM

    Differently shaped feet lead to differently shaped heels and toes on socks. Different ways of walking require different places to be reinforced. Experiments can lead to a better fit; if all you've ever worn were short-row heels, you won't know whether a square heel or a Dutch heel or some other kind will feel better, until you try one. Some of Cat B's experiments will work for someone.