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

Gandhi Would Be Proud

Dear Ann,
You’d think it would be fairly easy to take a picture of a baby on a baby blanket: 1. Place baby on blanket. 2. Snap picture. How hard could it be?
I set out to do this last week with the group-knit orangey-pink mitered square blanket for Lis’s baby girl, Jamie. (Details on how to make a blanket like this are here). Like most knitters of mitered square blankets, I’m a fairly stubborn person; oh yeah, I can get a job DONE, you betcha. Jamie, however, being a student of advanced techniques of passive resistance, was equally steely in her resolve not to have her picture taken. It was the Clash of the Hardheads; size did not matter.
Jamie Tactic 1: Run away. Simple. Effective. Good exercise for both of us.
Tactic 2: Pout. They will not take your picture if you pout.
Tactic 3: Read a book, preferably a large book that blocks photography of one’s entire body. (At this point, a mob had gathered, and was chanting, “Hell No! No Pho-to!”)
Tactic 4: This one is a classic: the Limp-as-a-Dishrag Squirm. The NYPD hates it. I’ve never seen it done better.
It was much easier to take a picture of the charming handmade bear that Siow Chin sent with her square.
Despite his moveable limbs, the bear remained absolutely still while I took the shot. He did not go limp as a dishrag, nor did he pout (unless that cute embroidered expression is a pout).
Needing a rest, I took some stills of the blanket, so all can admire our collective handiwork:
Here’s a flat shot. And for the hard-core miter-heads out there, a view of the seams, which we did not by sewing, but by picking up stitches along the edges of squares and strips, and then doing a 3-needle bind-off on the right side. This made for a very neat finish on the wrong side. No ‘ridges’ from a mattress seam–we are so very clever.
And hey, guess what? After all that, I wore Jamie down and got this lovely picture:
I call it “Happy Girl With International Handknit Blanket”.
Lis loves the blanket. I want to add my thanks to hers, to everyone who sent in squares, notes, bears, flowers and tiny toys, and to the stalwart sewer-uppers of Brooklyn and the Lower East Side, who came out on a bad night to drink wine and sew in ends. Thanks you guys–you’re the best.
Love, Kay




  1. Dispite the fact that it took you so long to get the job done, you have to admit the little is cute! And … exercise is good for us!

  2. Oh … I mean “little girl”! πŸ˜‰

  3. Beautiful blanket! Y’all’ past few posts have put me in an afghan-y mood. If only I could somehow convince other people to do all the sewing-up for me…. The three-needle bindoff is a genius idea, by the way.

  4. That were a lot of stitches that had to be picked up. Well done to all the Finishers.
    We love all the cute pictures.

  5. love pouty Jamie! we specialize in photos of pouty little girls, and we highly prefer them to those of forced smiles, that will happen next in Jamie’s career.

  6. Beautiful blanket for two beautiful girls !

  7. A true diva-in-training only cooperates after all her other many moods and fancies have been satisfied. I love every picture. And I may never recover from having seen that divine work of many hands.

  8. Oh, Kay –
    you have made my heart sing with the thought of a three needle bind off on the afghan squares. How cool are YOU???

  9. The blanket is so lovely! Kids nowadays just have this in-born talent to recognise any electronic eye and practise passive resistance, they don’t have to study it.

  10. At our house we call the “Limp-as-a-Dishrag Squirm”, and our youngest is the Master. When the boy so desires, he defines “Immovable Object”. He’s Three. Three makes me so tired.
    Beautiful blanket, even more beautiful girl (and the bear’s pretty sweet, too!).

  11. I meant to say that we call the Jamie’s preferred form of passive resistance the “Toddler Flop”.
    That’s what I get for reading — and posting to — blogs after midnight.

  12. Wow! That’s a stunning blankie and a very pretty diva.
    3-needle cast off is just genius – wish I’d thought of that when making DS’s blankie but I think the hormones prevented any rational thought except “must get this thing done”!

  13. Wow! Gobsmacking afghan – you’ve given me ideas about what to do with all the little bits of hand dyed wool I’ve been playing with. Thanks! (cute kid too πŸ˜‰

  14. A beautiful blanket (and a beautiful girl). Now I know what I’ll be making for my friend’s expected twins – especially now you’ve given me the 3 needle bind off idea.

  15. Do you know that blanket has turned out so beautiful ? I actually wondered how it would look with all our different interpretations of the shades and mitres but it really works. How could I doubt you ?!

  16. Hey, the blanket is gorgeous! Thanks for all the detail shots–it’s exciting to see the construction of the finished piece. Jamie is a lucky little girl.
    I spent all weekend sewing mine and have it halfway together…still thinking about that border. Thanks again for all the inspiration and all the tips!

  17. Jamie looks so patient: Yes, go ahead and put me here, that’s fine. Yes, I love my new blanket are we done yet?
    I just love the way all the squares get along so well. Just fabby. Bravo, everybody! xoxoxoxoxox

  18. Brava Jamie! It takes a lot to bring Kay to her knees.
    Love the blanket, love the idea of all those squares zooming in from all over, and I’m absolutely mad about the three needle bind-off seaming method. Almost, but not quite, enough to send me off in search of armfuls of colored cotton…

  19. The border! The border! Tell us about the border!
    Is it your classic pick up a zillion stitches on the side, stockinette 3 rows & bind off? Do I see that it’s different colors on different sides?
    And more seam details: the miter squares are matress stitched together into big squares of four, then the big squares got the three-needle bindoff, yes?
    I have just enough pregnant friends to think I can still make them all things…
    Thanks for all the pictures and sharing – it’s pretty damn fabulous.

  20. X-quisite blanket kay et al…..who knew all those color combos would sing together….genius at work!

  21. Thanks for posting so many pics. It was great to be able to participate and so fun to see it all come together!

  22. Wow, what a great blanket.. I don’t usualy like stripes or squares, but this is a real inspiration!
    Congrats on a great blog too πŸ™‚

  23. Thanks for posting pics of the finished article – it is gorgeous! All your mentions of the hard work involved in putting it together make the thought of my 2 knitted squares seem hardly anything in comparison. You did a marvellous job! I’m so pleased it worked out so beautifully!

  24. Oh how beautiful it turned out to be, a perfect blanket for a beautiful little girl!

  25. Finally success! She’s such a cutie and what a great blanket she has πŸ™‚


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