Best news all day: Clif’s friend is out of ICU, so much better. Love to you all for such kind thoughts.

Handspun Finale


Dear Kay, The bifurcated Citron is now done. When it got down to the final bit of yarn, I pulled out my postal scale and ascertained that one row weighed 2 grams, and I had 38 grams of yarn left. This was good news, because I’d landed just at the point when the final ruffle would make sense. My sister-in-law Mary Neal feels there should be a ruffle tax. She’s pretty strongly anti-ruffle, and I get that. But a ruffle on the edge of...

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Bias: A Good Thing (For Shawls)


Dear Ann, All good things must come to an end, even if they are very, very long good things.  Today I bid a fond farewell to the knitting of my Tokyo Shawl, and a warm welcome to years and years of wearing it. On the train home from Boston on Saturday, I knit the last gently slanting rows, and wove in the ends. As soon as I dropped my grip in the front hall, I washed the shawl in the kitchen sink, squoze out as much water as I could, and...

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Go Toward the Light, Literally: The Knitter’s Life


Dear Kay, This time of year, the light through the kitchen window hits a peak of glory around 6 pm. I keep an eye on the kitchen sun schedule the way a fisherman knows the tides. This late afternoon light? It looks like Jesus will come striding out of the cedars any minute. Thomas Kinkade, the Painter of Light, wishes his light looked like this light. I had a slim window in which to get a picture of my latest sock-finishing effort. There was...

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Curiosities for the Curious Sock Knitter


Dear Kay, When you’re on a sock binge, you end up wandering the Internet in search of EVERYTHING SOCKULAR. The image that haunts me today? The oldest knitted item in the Victoria and Albert Museum in London happens to be: a pair of socks. Apparently humans two millennia ago had two toes! I did not know this. A sock binge also leads me to sock books. I keep thumbing through three that I have on hand. Sometimes a bracing bit of history...

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One-Sock Knitalong: Wise Words


Dear Kay, As for the One-Sock Knitalong, all I can say is WHOA. The quantity and quality of unfinished socks bubbling up from the La Brea Tar Pit of Languishing Handknits is frankly astonishing. OK, maybe I suspected that we’d have some well-aged Prime socks in the mix. But these are Carter-era socks, socks used to hide whisky barrels during Prohibition, socks that came over on the Mayflower. You can see the tender reunions,...

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Snippets: 42,799 Sock Patterns to Consider


Dear Kay, In anticipation of the One-Sock Knitalong that begins on Monday, May 16, I’m thinking about sock patterns. As I write, there are 42,799 patterns in the Ravelry pattern database for the category Accessories/All Feet/Legs. In a historic first in the knitting universe, I will here rank all 42,799 patterns in order, from my least favorite to most. #42,799 through #42,510: Barefoot Sandals. C’mon, this is the worst of both...

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