A one-minute audio linguistics lesson: how New Orleanians pronounce “Chartres.”

Mooching Yarn from The Plucky Knitter


Dear Kay, The world is getting smaller by the minute, I tell you. The other day, I had an excellent chance encounter, meeting Sarah Dimond, who is known to many as The Plucky Knitter. I was in town from Monteagle to visit with our accountant. In the aftermath of a fairly excruciating conversation about Line Items, Betsy and I sought solace at our favorite duplex in Nashville, the building that houses a) CraftSouth and b) BarTaco. Next thing I...

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Lazy Sunday: Loving Bill Cunningham

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Dear Kay, I was so, so sad to learn of the death of Bill Cunningham, the legendary photographer of street style in New York. But soon, after spending time reading about the deep love so many people had for him, I realized that the proper emotion when thinking about Bill Cunningham is JOY. What joy he brought to his work! Even in his final report for the New York Times, he is delighted and amused by what he sees. “The fashion show is on...

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Snippets: What Makes a Beach Read?


Dear Kay, What Makes a Beach Read is a juicy list of 44 books to read with sand under your feet or a hammock under your backside. The curator here is the staff of Nashville’s sublime Parnassus Books. I’m on the prowl for new audiobooks, so this arrives just in time. Really Cool Stitching Heard a great talk last night by Ilze Aviks, an artist teaching at Shakerag Workshops this week. She works like a fiend, creating five-foot-high...

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Kay Is Away; Ann Soldiers (Valiantly) On


Dear Kay, Straight up, I am not comfortable writing on your day.  It just feels wrong.  I don’t have a dog photo.  I don’t know any good British teledramas (except Broadchurch, which has only two seasons to watch, not 30 like Eastenders).  I don’t have a four-acre garter stitch blanket on the go.  Despite the fact that people regularly call me Kay and you Ann, I have to face into the fact that we are separate people, for...

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Indigo Wonderland


Dear Kay, Through some minor miracle,  last night I found myself sitting in the crowd at the fabled Shakerag Workshops in Sewanee, Tennessee. The speaker was a Nigerian fabric artist who now lives in Santa Fe. This is Gasali Adeyamo. He is teaching batik, indigo dyeing, and the general concept of being awesome. His mission of preserving and celebrating age-old Nigerian dyeing traditions seems to be going pretty well. His classroom is...

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Back to Rectangle One


Dear Ann, There is a spectrum of perfectionism in knitting. I’m at an extreme end of the scale. Once I know about a mistake, I have to fix it, even if it doesn’t really make a difference to the wear or the look of the garment. I do not subscribe to the “trotting horse school,” in which you don’t have to worry about a mistake unless it can be seen from a trotting horse. Or on a trotting horse. It has something to do...

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