If you’re Rhinebeck bound, we would love to see you at Jill Draper’s studio in Kingston on Saturday night. Details here.


Dear Kay,
That’s Thorn up there, at the thrilling moment when the sail-shaped body of this shawl was complete, and the 5,498,309 stitches at the edge had to be put onto holder yarn in anticipation of the attached garter-stitch border that awaited. The 10,309,495 stitches to pick up! The shift to the four-foot-long size 4 circular–unsurprisingly, there was one of those in my pile of circular needles. I don’t have a problem with a long-haul border, ever. The expectations are so straightforward. I picked up and I knitted.
But one immutable reality was harshing my mellow. When Bristol Ivy writes a pattern and calls for 1,075 yards of yarn, SHE IS NOT JOKING. She did not write “1,000 yards,” so as I made my way toward the nine garter ridges that she prescribed, I was pretty sure the gas was going to run out. I couldn’t tell when, though. When you have 600 stitches on your needle, one row can contain an entire relationship. Babies are born during a 600-stitch row. Political alliances can come and go; you can gain ten pounds, lose your religion, and get it back during a 600-stitch row.
It took me a while to decide exactly how bad the yarn situation was. I could have squeezed seven garter stitch rows out of the yarn but decided to stick to six. I had three options: a) quit knitting, bind off, find peace with a border with an odd proportion; b) seek out more Alisha Goes Around Zeal of Zebra fingering weight yarn; or c) dive into the yarny archives.
I went with c.
I realize this is a controversial choice. But the whole project was getting so earnest and literal that I felt the overwhelming need to blow it up a little.
Honestly, I have no idea how I could have half a ball of neon Koigu in my stash. But there it was, and it was irresistible.
Time’s up! Off to go stare at this thing that is now blocking on the floor of the den.

Tags: , ,



  1. LOVE THE YELLOW! Koigu is always appropriate. Inspirational!

  2. LOVE THE YELLOW! Koigu is always appropriate. Inspirational!

  3. this is quite a delicious color combination, and in the way that a noble pediment stops the eye from traveling upward through space at the top of a building, it will make a bold end to all those twists and turns. good choice!

  4. Well….you’ll be ready for the next Packers game!

  5. I love it. And startling for you too. But I love it, sort of the perfect way to bring this to an end.

  6. I like it. Who wants what is expected?

  7. Love It! Love it in that way that you look at something and say, “Wow, I never would have thought to do that! That’s why she’s a knitwear designer and I’m not.” And while you didn’t actually plan it, you did choose it. Serendipity.

  8. Wow! Your courage is inspirational-and gorgeous!

  9. I know that it doesn’t necessarily ‘go’, but I think that the neon green was unexpected and perfect. It will really make those sections of bright green from the second skein pop.

  10. Reading along… first thought: and I was grumping about 351 stitches! More reading… second thought: (out-loud) oh no, you didn’t!! Well ~ maybe, yes, o.k. ~ that’s not bad. Yeah! Pretty cool actually.
    I reserve judgement until I see you wearing it.

  11. I’m amazed that you could get all those millions of stitches on a single needle!
    People don’t look at a knitted garment the same way we do when we knit it. So they won’t necessarily think the small bit of colour is a desperate measure, or an emergency finishing touch! It’s just a bit of yellow, defining the edge. Way to go!

  12. If you love a garter stitch edge (I think you and I both do) then calling attention to it with a little contrast is cool. Cool, cool, cool.

  13. Love. it. Just the right amount of verve!

  14. Oh, Anne! I die. I love it! I want one!

  15. Oh, Anne! I die. I love it! I want one!

  16. Oh, Anne! I die. I love it! I want one!

  17. Oh, Anne! I die. I love it! I want one!

  18. I think the contrast is terrific. I’ll be interested to see it on.

  19. I like it. It reminds me of new spring growth on the tips of evergreens. I also like the evidence of real live music in the background, in the form of the casually-laid-down guitar and the piano. Knitting and music…two of my favorites!

  20. Is it yellow or is it chartreuse. I hold that there is a shade of lime green for everything. Chartreuse is a neutral, and a fine one at that.

  21. Love that grellow border. It’s sassy.

  22. A classmate in Taiu Landra’s color class at Vogue Knitting Live talked about choosing a wild color to add because her knitting was too “tasteful.” I think this is exactly what she meant. From tasteful to amazing!

  23. Poifect! Love that neon yellow with the mellow green.

  24. Can’t wait to see it blocked!

  25. Wow! I love the idea of the “neon” Koigu. What color is it really? Green? Spring Green? Yellow? Whatever the color, the interest value just increased ten fold on a project that already had a high interest value at the get-go.
    Can’t wait to see the finished product!

  26. Can hardly wait to see your lovely model (also named Anne by chance) with this on!

  27. Chartreuse is an amazing color and looks great with the teal. Great choice!!

  28. Edge is good.

  29. Totally love these colors… perfection together!

  30. My knitting mentor, the great Karen Rumpza of Needlework, Unlimited in Mpls. told me, “Adding apple green or strawberry to a project always makes it better”. I’m paraphrasing but it’s surely true. Nice work, Ann.

  31. My knitting mentor, the great Karen Rumpza of Needlework, Unlimited in Mpls. told me, “Adding apple green or strawberry to a project always makes it better”. I’m paraphrasing but it’s surely true. Nice work, Ann.

  32. Controversial my left buttock. Sometimes you need some contrast to let the stitches stand out.

  33. I love it. I always want to do things like this. Sometimes I work up the courage and sometimes I forget that it is my knitting and I can do what I want!

  34. The neon works for me. And it will certainly draw the eyes away from any variation in skeins of the main color. It looks great!

  35. Wow, what a great choice…love it!
    I think these bright citrons are going to be THE spring colors. Have you seen Melissa Leapman’s cable turtleneck in the current issue of Vogue Knitting? It is fabulous in a very neon “Highlighter” green.

  36. It looks lovey – soooooo many stitches

  37. LOVE the yarn! LOVE this tale of knitterly grit. And would love to see a picture of you modeling it.

  38. Its gorgeous!! One day I hope to be that bold. What a beautiful choice!

  39. Its gorgeous!! One day I hope to be that bold. What a beautiful choice!

  40. Bold! You’re a brave knitter.

  41. I absolutely love brave knitting — must strive for more of that myself!

  42. I love that pop of green! But I also love the stack of music on the piano and guitar on the chair. Looks like my house!

  43. Deeeeeee-LISH!

  44. I think it looks lovely! Even in spite of your reservations about the yarn choice in the follow-up post. It’s not as pure or mellow as the original gray, but it has a wonderful dappled forest effect. And I wanted to give you a solidarity fist-bump over the green with emergency neon yellow stripe; I did the same a couple of years ago!
    Here’s mine (uncanny, no?):


A bit of news from us, every now and again.

(Your email is safe with us.)