Wednesday, January 08, 2020

A pretty good day. Alexander came to see me, bringing my 2020 calendar. He makes one every year, illustrated with pictures of his two sons each taken in the month it illustrates. This is getting harder and harder to arrange, he says – there won’t be many more such calendars.

And I knit fanatically on. When I had only a gold and a green stripe on my shawl, the colours seemed gentled by the Shetland yarn. But I’ve now added the black stripe which comes at the top of the ANC flag, and the effect is a good deal fiercer. I am not far short of the centre of the border – that will consist of ten rounds alternating the main colour with red in two-round stripes. Red appears in the modern South African flag, along with the ANC colours.

I'm right that the borders are shallow. They are only 50 rounds deep. Other exemplars I have located suggest there could be as many as 80.

Thank you for your help with finding my previous hap. It was interesting to discover that I both began and ended 2017 with a baby shawl – the first was one by “Mrs Hunter of Unst”, an old Paton’s leaflet which I knit for Rachel before she was born; and I saw the year out with Gladys Amedro’s “Slett’s shawl” (I think it’s called) which I knit for Archie before he was born. Both, this time, for new great-granddaughters.

But what I wanted was my previous experience with what I am knitting now – Gudrun Johnson’s “Hansel” hap from her Craftsy class. I found out how to search my blog – Google knows everything – and a search for “Emmett” soon revealed that I knit that shawl in ’16, not ’17. A brief trawl through the blog soon answered my question – that time, too, I gave up and purled the purl rounds.

(Observe that I have now added a Search button to the sidebar.)

I was wildly enthusiastic about the pattern, back in ’16, although I seem to have been awfully slow at finishing off the edging.

I am distressed to discover how much stronger I was in ’16 than I am now – and how much more interesting was the blog. It was actually about knitting, paragraph after paragraph.

Susan Crawford has produced a book of patterns based on old Shetland ones from her previous book. She is releasing it Kate Davies fashion, one pattern a fortnight and then the whole book in June. The cover pattern is much to my taste, a bottom-up yoke sweater with a nice single-colour textured yoke. And it’s fun to get a new pattern every so often, Kate Davies fashion, especially in the winter darkness. I am tempted.


  1. Just been catching up on reading your blog. Re Austen. Just before Christmas I worked my way through a book by John Sutherland which was basically a graded set of quiz questions on each of the Austen novels. It was a little obsessed with how much everyone was worth, but it certainly revealed how much one did not remember. I've almost finished "Mansfield Park", and I do think it is remarkable for its tight focus on the consciousness and sensibility of the central character, quite unlike even "Persuasion".
    Oh, and Mary Lou, I wouldn't get your hopes up over "Sanditon". Austen did write a fragment with that title but this version was almost entirely written by Andrew Davies.

    1. I won't, Shandy, thanks!
      And Jean, friends can discuss more than knitting!

    2. =Tamar12:08 AM

      Oh, but Sanditon is fun! Toward the end it is practically a farce.

      The Sutherland book sounds like a valuable source for people who want to discuss Austen in detail without having to trawl through the books page by page for details.

  2. Your blog is still very interesting.

  3. Hilde in Germany4:43 AM

    Your blog is still so interesting, I start my day with it. I like it that it is not only about knitting, and I get a lot of ideas for my reading.

  4. Anonymous11:23 AM

    It is possible to search your whole blog as one entity? So much better than my suggestion. Glad you discovered it! Chloe

  5. My interest in your blog has not abated in the least--if anything, it's grown!

  6. Jean, I hardly ever comment, but I read your blog religiously. Your canny descriptions of your life lift my spirits and evoke a beloved place (Scotland). You are NOT less interesting than you were three years ago. :-)

  7. I agree with all your devoted readers: your blog is as fascinating as ever. As an avid reader, I love hearing about books and the discussion that ensues. And knitting of course!
    Stay strong!