Friday, February 12, 2021


I did it:


and it nearly did for me. It’s not well done; I think you can see that it’s not entirely straight. But it’s done. It’ll do. I doubt very much if I’ll ever block a shawl again.


The cats were keen to help. When Perdita and I were younger, and shawl-blocking was done by crawling about on the floor, she liked to help. She would pull out the pins, and I was always terrified that she would try to swallow one. (She was, and is, a most peculiar cat.) This morning, Rachel phoned while I was in mid-block. Both cats emerged from the spare room – they hadn’t really wanted to help, they just wanted to annoy me. They dashed past into the outer hall. I kicked the door shut and imprisoned them:


The old-style, land-line telephone is on the wall, just out of view. I was sitting on the backless chair.


Sometimes I wonder whether those cats really hate each other as much as they say they do.


2023 steps so far today – and I’m going straight to bed. No knitting. The weather continues very cold, the pavements (sidewalks) packed with snow.


Thank you, again, for your help with leg-warmers. Eileen, I sent off at once, on reading your comment, for the Shetland Wool Week annual 2020. It’s a good cause. I spent some time with Ravelry leg-warmers, but few are of use. Many are so sloppy that they look as if they’d fall off as soon as the wearer lifted a foot. I think I might start with a fold-over topping, kilt-hose-fashion, with which J. could wear a garter. I think what’s wanted here is something which will seriously keep a leg warm.


But wee Hamish first (after the Polliwog). I think I have decided on which of Ella Gordon’s colour combinations I want, but it’s not easy. The Duchess of Devonshire – nee Debo Mitford – says somewhere that a room needs a coup de rouge, and so, on the whole, does a Fair Isle ensemble of colours. Although I think one might substitute a shot of acid green, in knitting if not, perhaps, in home décor. I don’t have to decide for a while.


Shandy, one day there will be a world again in which we could sit down together and talk about “Sense and Sensibility”. I haven’t finished it yet, but I’m increasingly not impressed. Could it be that I’ve only read it once before? All I remembered was Mr. Willoughby, but there are a cacophany of other characters.


  1. I like Sense and Sensibility! It was the first bit of 'literature' I read from choice, having had Great Expectations, Jane Eyre and Northanger Abbey forced upon us in the first couple of years of secondary school.
    I'm so pleased to have found the J&S blog and the beautiful photographs and wools. I need someone to hide my credit card quick, before I get carried away.

    1. The hap is looking splendid, I meant to add.

  2. Congratulations on getting it blocked. It will be wrapped around a baby and look splendid. I got a laugh out of the cats glowering through the glass. I have read S and S and seen the film, but remember little except Marianne’s fever. Now Persuasion! Let’s talk about that. I loved the novel and the film.

  3. Anonymous1:47 AM

    I am loving the hap even more! Can't wait to see it in use.

    & why are you being coy about which of the colorways you are leaning towards? Are these the ones in J&S's Instagram?

    & while the pedometer only recorded 2023 steps, it doesn't count all the stooping and bending and arm movements you used to block the hap. I think you can feel pretty confident adding at least 500 steps for that.

    Beverly in NJ

  4. =Tamar6:54 AM

    Sense and Sensibility is based on obscure laws no longer in force, which makes it harder to understand their motives.

    The hap looks good.

    1. Are these the laws of inheritance you mean? The centre of the book is really what the title says: should you be open about what you feel, as Marianne is throughout, or live more by reason, which is what Eleanor feels forced to do, for the good of her whole family.