Monday, August 19, 2013

A thoroughly unsatisfactory day yesterday, including not much knitting. I resumed Relax2 – I’m shaping the top of the back with short rows, each one of which is detailed separately in the pattern.  I've figured out where I am and what I’m doing (I think) and it should go more briskly today.

How many temporarily-laid-asides turn into UFO’s because we’re scared of trying to find our place? Or try and fail?

Both IK and VK were on the mat when we got back last week. I preferred IK. This is the new editor’s first real issue – her name was on the last one, but the choices were Eunny’s. And she's good.

As often, VK may look better in five years time. And with the offerings re-imagined in better colours. And what about that intarsia? Galina Carroll’s pussy cat (no. 25) is sufficiently bizarre to be arresting. But could anyone actually wear it? Even in five years time?

The articles are good, though. There’s one on planned pooling – that’s what pointed me to Laura Bryant’s book, mentioned yesterday. The article is about her and Karla Steubing, who wrote the Twistcollective article also mentioned (and linked to) yesterday. So we don’t really need the VK article any more.

And my friend Candace Strick writes about shadow knitting. That is one of many interesting techniques I have never tried. Inspired by her article, I plucked Hoxbro’s book from my shelf and soon discovered that my failure to knit from it was not because the technique seemed daunting but because I didn’t like any of the patterns.

But there are plenty of interesting shadow patterns out there in cyberspace. And one could do worse than to start with Candace’ VK slouch hat. Will a hat stay on without ribbing? That one has a rather neat braided border, but… One could easily change that, if one were nervous.

Meg reprises an old pattern for a sleeveless vest. The book page tempts with “Ancient Egypt in Lace and Color” by Anna Dalvi. Books are getting out of  hand, here.


Lizzie is safely in Kansas, experiencing culture shock but standing up to it. She had a long Skype with her family yesterday, and this morning I’ve got a nice email from her. She is taken aback by the signs on the door of every building saying “Please do not bring your gun in here”.

And she reports – not in the email but in the conversation with her family – that she is offered drugs in a friendly way at every turn. I am as surprised as she is at this news. It is a subject of which I have no personal experience whatsoever. Zilch. But Lizzie grew up in south London, not far from Brixton, and has spent two years at a British university.  My surprise is that Kansas can surprise her, in this respect.

She says she’s found a British shop in Lawrence where she hopes to secure a decent cup of tea.


  1. Ruth in Ontario, Canada2:06 PM

    Jean, Anna Dalvi's book is available as an ebook on Ravelry, so you can indulge without necessarily taking up shelf space. I face a similar issue with book storage! The signs about not bringing your gun into university buildings ("please"!!) are just plain offense intended to American readers.

  2. Maureen in Fargo3:48 PM

    I find it very sad and embarrassing that Lizzie's early impressions of us are so unfavorable. Our gun culture is so bizarre…now that legislatures have seen fit to give our citizens the right to carry firearms everywhere we see these signs all over the place here in North Dakota and Minnesota, not just our university buildings….I find those on the doors of churches to be the most disconcerting, myself.

  3. Oh my. That is culture shock for Lizzie.

  4. Maureen in Rochester4:55 PM

    I would be taken aback too, and I live in upstate New York. I hope Lizzie has an opportunity to see other parts of the country. I have lived in or visited at least half of our states and have never seen such a sign.

  5. Anonymous5:15 PM

    Maybe Lizzie should have chosen a school on the east or west coast, after all. Kansas sounds utterly bizarre and dangerous. I've never been there, and her report doesn't encourage me to visit. Ruth above, no offense taken.
    -- stashdragon

  6. Anonymous5:19 PM

    Unfortunately, the signs are here to stay. There is a nice store downtown called Brits that Lizzie might find interesting. And right across the street is the Yarn Barn. I hope she enjoys her stay in Lawrence.

    Deneise in Lawrence

  7. Anonymous5:22 PM

    I am surprised at the gun signs in Kansas. I went to the University of Kansas 30 years ago (but now live in California). Certainly there were no such signs then. I would expect them in Montana or North Dakota (from my husband's and my travels). I can only second Maureen - I hope Lizzie has a chance to travel around a bit!
    Beverly near Yosemite

  8. Anonymous5:26 PM

    (Is Lizzie in Lawrence? The Yarn Barn there might prove a source of sock yarns. Beverly again.)

  9. I'm disgusted by all the offers for drugs! I hope she stays away from those types and finds good friends!

    I enjoy your blog. You know, we always wonder who would find our day-to-day affairs interesting but here is a case that proves it can be true! Keep writing! I love hearing about what's going on in Scotland!

    Honeybee in Montana

  10. The culture of firearms in the US can be crazy. Here's more crazy -

    She needs to travel while she's here!