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Seamless Knitting: False Idol or True Religion?


Dear Ann, I must have eaten my Wheaties this morning or something, because I’m feeling feisty. I have that urge to stir the pot, step back and watch people scream. Not really: I have simply had a Personal Insight. And that insight is that I do not like to knit small tubes, such as sleeves, in the round, and I’m not going to do it anymore. Let’s review the pros and cons. But remember, this is a *Personal* insight. I am not...

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The Same Sweater Twice: Rut or Groove?


Dear Kay, This will be brief, because a) I am binge watching Madam Secretary and really need to find out whether Secretary of State Tea Leoni is going to resolve that Moldovian airplane hijacking. And b) this sweater is possibly the least photogenic knitting project I have ever attempted. When I say this looks better in real life, you will say, “Good grief, I hope so.” The Good News TONS of good news! This Moroccan Nights sweater...

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How to Make a Knitter


Dear Ann, You can’t make a person into a knitter by a direct route. Making knitters is a circuitous process requiring a mix of patience, hope and indifference. Once you’ve picked your target, don’t get up in their grill and say things like, “You should try knitting! I love knitting! You will love it too!” Take a more subtle route; avoid exclamation points. In my view, it can never hurt to knit for the person. I...

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The Hero’s Journey, with Knitting


Dear Kay, You know how a knitting project has a narrative arc to it—all that Joseph Campbell hero’s journey stuff? “A hero ventures forth from the world of common day into a region of supernatural wonder: fabulous forces are there encountered and a decisive victory is won: the hero comes back from this mysterious adventure with the power to bestow boons on his fellow man.” Exactly! That’s us! Well, this Moroccan...

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How to Get Rid of Ladybugs, Etc.


Dear Kay, The ladybug invasion has arrived, and it is SO GROSS. One ladybug: make a wish! Two ladybugs: aw! A couple! Eighty ladybugs: the Walking Dead. Slow-moving zombie bugs, easy targets, SO GROSS. I know that ladybugs eat aphids, and that’s great, but there are no aphids inside my house. You climb in my windows? At your peril, ladybugs, at your peril. They particularly love son Clif’s bedroom. So warm and sunny, with an open...

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Breaking That One Ironclad Rule of Knitting

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Dear Kay, There is one rule of knitting that I have followed without fail. I was taught this rule right when I was beginning my knitting mania, in 2002. There I was, in a yarn shop for the very first time, and the shop person was giving me a little tour. I reached immediately for a ball of Rowan in the shade I wear pretty much every day—black—and she practically whacked me on the wrist. “Don’t ever knit with black...

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