Need a holiday handknit? Time for a Schmatta!

Winners of a Forgotten Contest, Now with More Dog Pictures

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Dear Ann,
Just a quick break from PupWatch 2009 to announce contest winners of our new audiobook. I’m so heartened by the notes we’ve been getting from people who’ve listened to it. At the time, I just thought of the recording sessions as a lark for us; it hardly occurred to me that anybody would listen to the thing!
Anyhoo, many people got one (or both) of the right answers:
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The project I am working on is a version of either the Gwithian Beach Blanket from Indigo Knits by Jane and Patrick Gottelier, or the more serene, but still super-swatchy, Sennen Cove Blanket by Jane Gottelier, which appeared in Issue 7 of the British knitting monthly, The Knitter.
The first-in-time correct guesser was Alexandra, and the randomly-chosen correct guesser was Susan. Send me your snail mails, please, and your chatty CDs will be in the mail to you, pronto.
The contest did not ask people to speculate about my reasons for making this blanket, but I’ll be glad to share them. I’ve wanted to make it since the Indigo Knits book came out, because of its pure coolness. I think I like the Sennen Cove version even better, because of its 3 dimensionality more than anything. (It looks like something a puppy would really enjoy chewing on, you know?) But what got me to actually start knitting those huge swatches was a thread in Ravelry harrumphing about why anyone would ever knit a blanket with uneven edges. Got my dander up! It’s knitting people! We can do it the way we like it! No sacred cows! Inventiveness for its own sake! All those other things I like! And the third, and probably most important reason I am making it, is, as it usually is with me, one photograph:
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This photo has it all: it cracks me up, it inspires me. I want to be those kids listening to their denim-clad i-Pods on their crazy denim patch blanket. I must have it, and I will have it.
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People have been kindly inquiring about the status of Our Olive. Thank you! Olive is doing well. In four short days she has gotten so familiar with her surroundings, and the buttons that are available to be pushed in all three of her housemates, that she’s pretty much running things. In the Department of Wee-Wee Pads, she is Gifted and Talented, and I am Relieved and Grateful. In other areas, however, Olive is more of a Special Needs student, e.g., she needs to be under constant visual surveillance. The vet has given her a clean bill of health, and me some excellent tips on getting her to stop crying from 3 to 5 a.m. Tuff love, and shades of the Ferber Method. There is a thunder of paws-on-carpet that we have not heard here since Joseph was the heavyweight crawling champion of NYC. All in all, a fabulous experience so far. The dog people talk to me now! Easiest clique to get into, ever!
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Kid Silk Haze labels give your breath that mohair-fresh feeling.
Love,
Kay

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63 Comments

63 Comments

  1. Welcome to dog world! It’s a big adventure and Olive looks and sounds like she’s going to be a super guide. They don’t stay puppies forever, but you can still call her a pup when she’s a full-fledged adult. Isn’t it interesting how quickly they take control of a household? Enjoy!

  2. Skein labels keep both kittens and puppies VERY happy for ages. Keep an eye on all knitting needles (and off the floor or couch) but accept that you will have partial sets until Olive is about the age of two (and yes, she might just snag something out of your knitting bag). Just one of those things you have to accept.
    Born to Chew!

  3. Yeah, watch out for the yarn-eating! Never mind how sorry you’d be if Olive chewed holes in a favorite project– a friend’s dog had to have surgery to remove a ball of yarn that was blocking her stomach (true story).
    Of course my dog has clinched the title of World’s Cutest, but Olive is a strong runner-up.

  4. Glad to hear things are going so well with Olive. Before you realize what’s happening, she will be running the household.

  5. That dog is just incredibly excessively cute. I can’t get over it.

  6. Oh that blanket! I love it! I may have to buy one or both of those books simply because of you! The uneven edges are fabulous!!!

  7. Cutest Puppy Ever!!! Teething is coming, though, so be prepared with some frozen face cloths (or ball band dish cloths)…wet them, wring them out, freeze them. Helps a lot!
    My 6 year old chocolate Lab took off this morning with a lable off of some Sirdar bamboo yarn. He was so sneaky about it, too!
    Oh, and knitting…LOVE the blanket, but all I can think of when I look at that picture is TAN LINES!

  8. A few people have mentioned it already, but puppies love bamboo needles. And yes, the dog clique IS very easy to get into. Glad you’re enjoying Olive.

  9. Iz ded from teh puppy cyoot.
    O.K. now a blanket-y question. What word will you use for your Cornwall swatch?

  10. Cute puppy and lovely blanket! It doesn’t take long for the four legged babies to worm their way into your heart! Just have to say – is that your daughter sitting on the bench with Olive? – she has beautifully shaped lips! So not a knitting or puppy related comment, I know!

  11. Love the blanket, too. Imagine people harumphing! Cretins (I just typed every variation on those letters; the word just didn’t want to appear correctly!)
    In one picture, it looks like Carrie is running away from home with the dog and an electric guitar…

  12. Welcome to The Club! :-) For some reason, my pup dubbed Kid Silk Haze. . Best of All Yarns! Not only were the labels really fun to play with, but that mohair? It just melts in a pup’s mouth (and creates a gummy mass o’yarn). Carrie is growing into a stunning young woman! Time flies. . .

  13. At least you have the advantage of Olive being short, so you can put things out of her reach for a bit. I would heartily recommend either bitter apple or lemon/lime juice with water sprayed on all matter of wooden legs and doors for the chewing phase (not that it helped with my dog, but others swear by it!!!)

  14. Congratulations on Olive. As others have said watch out for your needles. My almost 11 year old dog has not only destroyed sets of small size needles like my beloved wooden addis, but she’s also partial to eating skein labels and the cardboard innards of the Sirdar bamboo yarn. That is so not good for the yarn! (Dog was fine.) It doesn’t always go away when puppyhood is over. We have found that Kongs work really well.
    Although I had no idea what your blanket was, I did recognize the nautical theme. I totally get one of your reasons for knitting the blanket. I once knit a shawl that had unwoven in ends because a non-knitting relative was freaked out by my unwoven ends on another project.

  15. Ha – I just got a dog in August and it IS the easiest clique to get into, ever. All of the sudden, you’re a “dog person”. People come over to your house and you bore them by talking about your dog the whole time. It’s a good preview for kids (for me). We’re “ferberizing” our puppy still – he was sleeping through the night very well for about three weeks. Then, the last two nights, he has decided he’d much rather hang out with us at four in the morning. We had a howling dog from 4-5:30 AM today….arg.

  16. The dog will add another dimension to your knitting – dog hairs. The unconditional love you’ll get from your puppy is just the best. As for the nightly crying, try putting an unwashed t-shirt or something of yours in her bed. The scent of you may soothe her.

  17. Tuck away your pens, pencils and glasses too. My dogs loved anything that carried my sent. The t-shirt worked for our beagles (one gone, one 13 y.o) and also for our 6 m.o. German shorthaired pointer. Talk about a breed that is a handfull! But puppies/dogs are wonderful and it is great to always have someone to talk to!

  18. I highly recommend the penny can as a means of indicating something is verboten. One shake of the penny can and naughtiness stops! Then Olive will never associate the sound of your voice with being in trouble. (c:

  19. Us dog people are just so thrilled that we have another opportunity to talk about dogs! Since Olive is wee, sorry, small (forgot wee is not a good adjective for puppy owners), she made need a little extra warmth this winter. We should be making Olive coats!
    Awwwww…

  20. Us dog people are just so thrilled that we have another opportunity to talk about dogs! Since Olive is wee, sorry, small (forgot wee is not a good adjective for puppy owners), she may need a little extra warmth this winter. We should be making Olive coats!
    Awwwww…

  21. Okay, Olive…listen up…
    Make sure your people know about Kong toys and how to smear them with stuff like peanut butter or cream cheese. Make sure they know about this before you start bonding with your teeth!

  22. We go to Gwithian beach all the time but we wear lots more clothes than the people in the picture – full length wetsuits or a thick jumper usually!

  23. I’m not a fan of tuff love or the Ferber Method for kids, so when we brought our new puppy home, we gave her a clock that ticked and a warm water bottle. We thought the water bottle would feel like her brothers’ stomach and help her sleep – and of course a home made blankie. It did the trick. Happy dreams.

  24. Yes, the puppy is adorable, but more importantly, so is your daughter! I am always struck by how BEAUTIFUL she is in photos of her…a definite career in modeling…maybe even for Rowan!

  25. Beautiful daughter—such graceful hands. Adorable puppy. Wonderful blanket. Thank you for having all these things and for sharing them with us.

  26. Welcome to DogWorld. I have dogs and they are the awesome. I have knitting and that is awesome too. What I don’t have to knit with are the balls of yarn I left on the floor when one Ginger Belle, dog of amazing talents, was around. Those balls are now late yarn. I’m just sayin’.

  27. Glad to have you in Dogville, Kay. She’s a cute little snuggler!
    On a different note, what denim yarn are you using for your blanket? Is this a Rowan-faithful project, or are you going with Elann? Or is your stash of denim yarn so righteous that you are “just using up some scraps”? Inquiring minds want to know!

  28. Oooh, I LOVE that blanket. I would NEVER take it to the beach, however, might get sand on my hard work. LOL.
    Glad to hear the puppy is doing well. I suspect he’ll soon find it into bed with somebody. You do it for survival and then the next thing you know you can’t bear to sleep without them. Of course we have a papillon who doesn’t take up much room at all — I suppose yours will be just a little bigger in a few months time. Enjoy the puppy days — you’ll actually miss them when they are gone.

  29. the blanket is so handsome
    i am sorry i can not have dibs on it
    puppys also like to empty tissue
    boxes and rolls of toilet paper
    the knitting you and dixon have been
    turning out is just grand thank you
    for shareing bon jour

  30. Yes, Kate echoed my thoughts–‘a career in modeling’ caliber beauty, is your daughter. God bless.
    LoveDiane

  31. too too cute. I am speechless. BTW I refer to Olive, although the rest of you (and the blanket) look to be in fine form!

  32. dear olive … life as they have known it will never ever be the same now that they have you … do not forget ever … dogs rule … humans are in charge … in case of doubt remember … dogs rule … humans are in charge … hi paw … mille baci … gumby … and her mama!

  33. If Olive has bonded to her people already, try giving her a piece of polar fleece (it’s cheap and easily washable and dog friendly)that her people have sat/slept/wrapped themselves in. Then she won’t feel alone in her sleeping spot. I used a similar method when we sent our litter of puppies to their new homes (fleece used as material in the welping box = family smell). Only the two pups that went home without fleece cried at night.
    BTW, Olive is ADORABLE!!!

  34. Olive is SUCH a cutie and the kids, too! You’ll be glad for the puppy photos, I wish I had taken more. Ours grew so fast (now 56 lbs!) and I can’t believe she was once so small. She’s still endlessly amusing, though. I would recommend the Dog Whisperer for a positive and fun approach to training. The blanket is going to be great, but I wouldn’t want to take it to the beach either–you can sure crank out the large projects!

  35. Sorry…what did you say? I was distracted by the cutie-cute male model. (I’m not dead yet!) ;)

  36. It’s amazing how quick a puppy can start running the household. You’d think we could boss around such a little thing but if Olive is anything like my dog, the pitiful crying of a puppy is so perfectly tuned to making you feel like a heel that you’ll give in very quickly.
    In my experience, dogs learn the house rules eventually but you have to make allowances for their personalities because, just like other family members, there is always going to be some issue you can’t reform them on no matter how much you wag your finger at them.

  37. Welcome to puppy world! Keep your best shoes well out of reach, and start watching Caesar Milan’s show and reading his books. Best advice I can give.

  38. You could just skip to step 25 and let Olive sleep in the bed with you! That is what my golden rescue decided was best for all of us, and we sleep fine now. :)

  39. >harrumphing about why anyone would ever knit a blanket with uneven edges<
    yes, and BTW i would probably secretly even like the wrong side better. and seam it accordingly. Sennen Cove looks like a blanket to be lived on/in/with. lurvely.

  40. Olive is just adorable beyond words. How big is she going to grow?

  41. Lordy woman – you make me laugh – mohair breath…
    Your daughter(s) – both human and furry – are stunning – they would look great modeling in a Rowan mag looking very Jane Eyre on a misty moor. They’ve got that look.
    I’ve loved the Gwitthian blanket for years and can’t wait to see your version – will bleach be involved?

  42. Tuff love…maybe. We found that both of our last two dogs really liked the radio left on if left alone in the crate when they were young. And we really, really like crate training. For maybe a week, we did have to do the middle-of-the-night potty break for our last dog, but we made it clear that we were out the door, do your business, and back in the crate for the rest of the night. Once she got a bit bigger, we had to wake her up in the morning to go out!

  43. Tuff love…maybe. We found that both of our last two dogs really liked the radio left on if left alone in the crate when they were young. And we really, really like crate training. For maybe a week, we did have to do the middle-of-the-night potty break for our last dog, but we made it clear that we were out the door, do your business, and back in the crate for the rest of the night. Once she got a bit bigger, we had to wake her up in the morning to go out!

  44. Tuff love…maybe. We found that both of our last two dogs really liked the radio left on if left alone in the crate when they were young. And we really, really like crate training. For maybe a week, we did have to do the middle-of-the-night potty break for our last dog, but we made it clear that we were out the door, do your business, and back in the crate for the rest of the night. Once she got a bit bigger, we had to wake her up in the morning to go out!

  45. Just wanted you to know how much I enjoyed the audiobook. Yes enjoyed (in the past tense). I goggled it up fast while driving to and from work this week. Very funny, entertaining and so nice to hear your voices. It made me get out BOTH books again. I’ve had the sudden desire all week to knit some of those wash cloths, and the baby burp cloths, the bib and maybe another baby kimono for my niece who is expecting. Thanks for the great “listen.”
    Now when is your next book coming out?

  46. Kay you were always loved by dog people and I thought we talked to you plenty but now you just notice it. Stuffed animals are great companions for those early am hours. And Olive can I say you are one really lucky little pooch. Kay now you have one more to knit for. Dog patterns are the rag and really fun too.

  47. That dog is adorable and I will tell you what…Carrie is growing into some beautiful young woman!
    Love the blanket and the dog pix!

  48. Thankfully missed the harumphy Rav thread, but OF COURSE you gotta knit a blanket with uneven edges! Why? Because you can’t quilt one that way! (Well, maybe you could, but how much of a royal pain would that be? The whole concept is made for knitting.)
    Live the denim dream!!

  49. You girls just make me so dang Happy.
    Thank you so very much for your words, pictures, knittin’ and craftin’.
    -Hardworking Girl in Seattle

  50. You girls just make me so dang Happy.
    Thank you so very much for your words, pictures, knittin’ and craftin’.
    -Hardworking Girl in Seattle

  51. Mazel Tov! What a pooch! And I’m just loving the picture of Joseph in the last post. He looks very happy! LOVE!

  52. doggie sweater in Interweave Knits Summer 2007….reminds me of the swiffer cover :-)

  53. I love your blog

  54. Oh, Cute doggie! Welcome to puppy parenthood!
    A fun (puppy perspective) pup toy is an empty capped soda bottle. Our pup would bat it with a paw, it would skitter across the floor and she would chase it. Good for about 20 minutes of play. Discontinue use of SodaBottleToy when pup is big enough to be able to chew into or through it.

  55. Oh, Cute doggie! Welcome to puppy parenthood!
    A fun (puppy perspective) pup toy is an empty capped soda bottle. Our pup would bat it with a paw, it would skitter across the floor and she would chase it. Good for about 20 minutes of play. Discontinue use of SodaBottleToy when pup is big enough to be able to chew into or through it.

  56. Just gotta ask. . . is she Olive b/c of the awesome book “Olive the Other Reindeer”? She looks like that Olive.

  57. Mooooooorrrrre Olive pics! And I hope you have her lined up to appear in M&D’s next book….

  58. Your Olive is precious.
    And the puppy breath (a.k.a burning rubber smell) goes away by 6 months. :-)
    Enjoy. Nothing is much better than a puppy, unless it’s a puppy and a kitten growing up together.

  59. All those Ravelranters must be the same people who don’t understand or appreciate the allure of garter stitch. Third grader knitting? Now those are fighting words! Have you noticed that garter stitch is everywhere this fall?
    I bought the Indigo Knits book after you previewed it on the blog. My favorite is the grandad cardigan with all the mixymatchy buttons.

  60. I love Olive. So cute!
    I don’t have a dog yet, but I keep counting the days till spring (though I guess it might be OK to start looking now)!

  61. would love to own the 400 stitches book

  62. I would really really luv the ‘400 stitches’ book because i tried ordering a B Walker volume from Amazon and it came only it was shrunk to a paper saving size I barely recognized and I was sooo disappointed and I have one lovely B Walker volume I adore (nothing like the one I received)! This book looked nothing like the picture on their website! This book (if one could even call it that) should hardly be called a book…I felt so deceived and immediately sent it back with a lengthy note telling them how awful it was they were shrinking books! What’s with that???
    nancyknits

  63. That 400 Stitches book looks great – would love to have it.