Learn how to crawl: the New York City Yarn Crawlย is on through Sunday, September 25.

East End Update

Dear Ann,
We’re in the city for one day of doctor’s appointments, school shoes and overdue haircuts, and then headed back to Lawn Guyland, where conditions have been hot and muggy and overrun with small people. I think you know what I’m talkin’ ’bout when I say overrun with small people. They’re sweaty and sticky, they make a lot of noise, and they want to be fed with a really exaggerated regularity. One of them doesn’t like any ‘black stuff’ on his grilled hot dogs. One of them subsists entirely on buttered corn and Gatorade. At any given moment, we have several asthmatics in the house who need bizarre ministrations involving squirting medications into inhaling contraptions.
You get the picture. I’m bearing up well, considering I’m, well, me.
Handknit High Point
I had one Mountaintop Experience recently, which I must share. Let’s say you are in the grocery store, accessing your hunter-gatherer DNA and throwing provisions into your cart as rapidly as possible. You make it to the checkout line, where you are loading your stuff onto the conveyor as the harried mom in front of you is checking out. You hear the magic words, ‘Did you make that?’ Followed by the equally magic words, ‘It’s SO cute.’
You have no idea what she’s talking about, or even that she’s talking to you. Although she’s looking right at you, waiting for an answer. You look down, and realize that what she is admiring is a foxy, lacy skirt made from recycled denim.
And then you get to say words that are even more delicious than, ‘Yes, I made it.’ You get to say, ‘No, my friend made it for me!’
Yes, I finally started wearing the beautiful skirt Benedetta so generously gave me last September. I had my doubts because I had seen a picture of Benedetta wearing it, and let’s just say, I do not have Benedetta’s figure. Benedetta poo-poohed my reluctance. She said it would fit just fine.
And darned if she wasn’t right. It does fit just fine. I had this prejudice against knitted skirts, and skirts with drawstring waists. I thought for sure it was going to look all lumpy and bumpy and droopy. But no! It’s quite flattering. There you have it: The magic of knitting. An unprompted, arms-length compliment on its very first public outing. (The pattern for the skirt is here. Knock yourself out!)
It turns out that Admiring Supermarket Mom is a sometimes-knitter herself. She didn’t know about Knitty, so I got to preach the Good News of cool free patterns. I had the impression that she was going to go straight home and log on, while her Frozen Foods thawed on the kitchen counter. Yay! As she left, trailing her own whiny, sand-speckled brood, she said, ‘That must be a good friend!’ So true!
The Knitting
The knitting has been pretty mundane. I have been in a phase of knitting
dishrags. I sit there humming “’tis the gift to be simple’, and churning out the same dishcloth, over and over. Somehow, I’m enjoying the monotony, the fact you can put them down mid-row, slather sunscreen on everybody and arbitrate a tearful dispute or two, pick them up hours later, and not have to remember where you are because the pattern is burned into your fingertips. I think it has a lot to do with the fact that I don’t have a blanket project to turn to for my Knitting While Multitasking.
But just last night, I cast on a Super Secret Denim project that may start me humming something more exciting. It’s got …. shaping (gasp)! Once I get my denim groove back, I’ll be cranking up the stereo.
Meanwhile, there’s this
and this
and this
….to keep me from my knitting.
Hope you are cuddling little Molly and inventorying her perfection at this very moment,




  1. Oh, Kay. To be truthful, I have nothing much to say except that I’ve never before gotten to be the first comment to post, so I’ll say something. Actually, I’m thankful to hear that you’re knitting dishcloths. I’m knitting, well, nothing these days, so I can just chalk it up to the summer-can’t-get-anymore-humid-I-wish-I-wasn’t-so-bloated doldrums. I’ll keep the photos of the sunflowers and children frolicking at the seaside close to my heart as I sit here at my desk doing web research. Yup, that’s what I’m calling the review of MDK these days . . . best on your shaping!

  2. Mmmmmm….. Super Secret Denim Project? You look fab in that skirt, truly. I used to not want black things on food (still don’t, actually), but my huge food hate is ‘fluffy’ tomatoes, those ones with the strange texture. Which means that I make O/H taste test them all first (even if we’re out somewhere). Your small people could be worse! Seaside looks great, though. Or is ‘seaside’ peculiarly English? x x x

  3. Ann,
    Next time you are on Lawn Guyland, you should check out the Riverhead outlets for back to school shopping (and even an ABC Carpet & Home)
    Any good yarn stores that far east?

  4. Fabby fabby skirt! And Benedetta was certainly right – it looks great on you. The recycled-ness of it is rather brilliant too. I hope the secret (shaped) denim project is to go with it.
    I love how you are feeling a bit lost without a massive blanket to knit. I can imagine your kids in years to come sitting there saying “Do you remember that crazy mitred one – it was summer 2004 I think!”

  5. Kay, I have returned from the family summer jaunt and am trying to catch up on Mason-Dixon Knitting news – saw the picture of you in Bendetta’s skirt and had to tell you how great it looks – I too have been afraid of knitted skirts – I am inspired! Annhb

  6. Please don’t whine about being at a beach house, or whatever the f*uck fabulous thing those pictures are depicting. It’s just not attractive to whine about that.
    You look FAAAAAAAAAABBBBBBB in that skirt. I tell you what, if I saw the Knitty one first, I never would have thought of knitting it, but seeing it on you makes it look much more attractive. And I’m not saying that just to make up for the above comment about whining about the beach.
    Benedetta is one HECKUVA friend to knit that for you. Absolutely awesome. Where can I sign up to be her friend?

  7. glad to be right, for once in my life.
    you look great in the recycled denim skirt!
    and i am sooo glad you are wearing it!
    enjoy the beach…

  8. Super secret, huh? I’m guessing it’s a pair of Knitted Daisy Dukes. Am I right? Han’le it, Han’le it!

  9. Sudden thought – can you sash-and-block the dishrags together to make the Blanket of 2005? They’re only squares, after all… (or rectangles, I suppose).

  10. Just bleating with the herd, but it’s true: you look fab in the skirt and vice versa. Otherwise I’m with Norma. No sympathy for whiners at summer houses.

  11. Dear Norma and Valentina aka The Good Attitude Police:
    The occasional whimper at vacation time is just my way of keeping the Evil Eye away from my young. The sunscreen, the constant buttering of corn, the interrupted knitting—it’s a living hell! xoxo Kay

  12. Kay, you look fabu fabu in that skirt. I recently had the pleasrure of trying on a skirt that Kat Coyle designed and it was great. (I rarely do skirts, knitted or otherwise due to my cankles). Viva la denim! Viva la Kat!

  13. It’s probably frightfully bad form to use a person’s comments to ask a question of a fellow commenter but Julia would your cankles be akin to the bit of my anatomy some guy (no, chap) called my ‘Celtic calves’?
    Kay, the way today’s entry showed up on my screen it looked for all the world as though you were knitting dishrags from denim.

  14. You look awesome, the skirt looks awesome, the beach looks awesome, the sunflowers look awesome, the corn looks really awesome.

  15. You are the epitome of summer vacation, beach chic!

  16. Love the dishrags – can you give the pattern name, where I might find it??? I have been making dishrags too – 2 hours to make and also are embedded in finger memory.

  17. Kay, I want your life. How about we swap for the weekend? You take my MIL and the coast of maine and I’ll take your kid fights and the beach on Lawn Guyland.
    Skirt looks AMAZING on you.

  18. It’s true, you do look chic in that skirt. I surrender all my preconceptions about such garments: they are for us moms too. The sunflowers are blooming on the rolling hillsides here, a sight worthy of stopping the car, getting out, ferretting out the camera, and taking a picture to be re-sized and lobbed onto the blog. I’m glad you beat me to it, because it’s just so much work! mwah!

  19. … one and all…definately take out stock in the denim yarn company! skirt = tres chic….such a fashion plate in the sand…love…

  20. Kay, the skirt is very, very beautiful on you! You look terrific! I… need… that yarn…. today.
    I had the pleasure of meeting Ann (with lovely Fern) this evening- great fun!

  21. Hi Kay! Just read your “snippet” about Emma and her darling Oliver. Is there something we could do on this side of the pond to help increase her coffers a bit? I bid on Kerrie’s ebay auction but it occurs to me: I know that shipping from overseas can be a bit pricey and it would be nice if that shipping money could go to Oliver. Does that make sense? If we did something here, then all of the available funds could go to Emma. It is late and my mind is wandering but it just seems we could do something from here in addition to Kerrie’s auction. I don’t have a blog but I am a faithful blog stalker and really like Emma. I know she is your friend….what do you think?

  22. Now I want a knitted skirt!

  23. Why haven’t I thought of this, it is the perfect pattern for the denim to be recycled from my failed Delta! It must be the photo of you wearing it!

  24. ….. anna’s 63rd blanket thrills me! what a herculean achievement…..it raises the word “leftovers” to a new and magnanimous height…..

  25. FABULOUS! All of it – even the complaining! What a GREAT day! ๐Ÿ™‚

  26. Yay! Yer wearin’ yer skirt! It really does look deluxe on you. We always knew it would, acourse.
    So glad to hear you wallowing through kwalidy time with the younguns. Long days, short years . . .
    Having a whale of a time out west. Will provide midtrip update due to extreme amount of Stuff to Tell.

  27. kay, you & the skirt both look fabulous. thanks for the trip to the beach!

  28. Fab, fab, fab skirt. Every bit as fab on you as it was on Ben :0) If it’s not too personal tho’, can I ask – does the bum sag if you sit down too long in it ? I mean the skirt’s bum not yours of course ? !
    Heather x

  29. you look FAB in that skirt. Suddenly, I want to make it. The wristlets had scared me too badly prior to that.

  30. I have this skirt! (well not the same one obviously) In fact, I even have a whole lot of the yarn left over that truly should belong to you, because I will never knit with it.
    In any event, the skirt looks great on you, and I should drag my poor, lonely, only worn once version out of the closet today.


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