Clip & Save: How to Evenly Space Buttons


Dear Ann, One of life’s perplexing questions is how to do a good job when a cardigan pattern instructs you to “evenly space” the buttons on a button band. Patterns tell you to do it, but they don’t tell you HOW to do it. (Elliott is perplexed, not by button spacing, but by the delicate aroma of terrier on Big Lady’s handknit.) I’ve developed a way of doing it. I’m not saying it’s the best way,...

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February Is Shake Your Bon-Bon Month


Dear Kay, January’s Get Rid of 50 Things a Day project was basically a success, in the sense that I feel better about 1,500 things not being inside my house anymore. It was not perfect, by any means–I never did go into the basement. I may never go into the basement. And the toy closet was a shattering reckoning I hope never to repeat. But I did discover that I have pretty much a lifetime supply of books I haven’t read. If we...

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Oh. Snap.

Dear Ann, Remember how we were prattling on in our latest Problem Ladies column over at Twist Collective? About how we hate the crochet chain provisional cast on because it always worms around and we pick up in the wrong side of the bump or whatever and then, weeks or months or lifetimes later, it won’t unzip properly when it’s time to free the live stitches, and how this defeats the whole purpose of doing the fiddly thing in the...

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Love Means Never Having To PSSO

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Dear Ann, Announcement: I’ve finished knitting the 210 very long rows of Volt. I am now COMMENCING I-CORD. It’s frightfully exciting. Grace Anna Farrow’s instructions instruct, in the elegantly economical way that I have already come to expect of her patterns, how to do the i-cord edging along the live stitches as a bind-off, and on the side edges (the row ends) via the pick-up-and-attach-it-as-you-go method. I’ve...

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Must Have Relaxed Grip

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Dear Kay, I keep looking at that volcano plume thing from Iceland and marveling at how easily it derailed just about every airport in Europe. SHUT DOWN! I have this weird feeling of disappointment–hey, you mean I CAN’T fly to Paris right now? Or London? NONE of ’em? It makes me realize that I seem to have been carrying around this fantasy that I could, at any moment, if I really needed to, ditch out for Europe. Meanwhile, this...

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Don’t Stand and Watch

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Dear Kay, Top Tennis Tip #2 from my spring break tennis experience: “Constant Movement: Hit and move—don’t stand and watch.” I am beginning to think that tennis and knitting are the same thing. The same motions repeated over and over. The thrill of a decent serve; the agony of a bad bind-off. The blisters! The backbiting! The bad calls! Speaking of bad calls . . . I mulled the bind-off situation for the Diminishing Rib...

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