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Along the Pacific Coast Highway

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Dear Kay,
Alice Starmore has a number of out-of-print, elusive books, among them Pacific Coast Highway. I don’t have this book, published in 1997, and I don’t have a pile of doubloons to go get one.
I did, however, get to drive up the actual Pacific Coast Highway with the family, and the finally finished Starmore sweater.
It doesn’t take a genius to see that there are endless, spectacular colors to inspire a person. You can imagine Alice Starmore going out of her mind as she wound her way up Highway 1.
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It was pretty much irresistible to stop along the way to hang out with mammals other than my family, the elephant seals of PIedras Blancas.
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You can watch them, once the sun’s up, via the Elephant Seal LiveCam. They do this flipper thing where they flip sand onto their backs while otherwise remaining ponderously inert. This was entertaining to us for a very long time.
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I am seriously in love with the colorway known as Elephant Seal.
Love,
Ann

44 Comments

44 Comments

  1. Ann,
    Beautiful sweater and pictures.
    I’m the Jane who was the first
    to download Bowling Avenue, loved
    it. Loving “Nashville”, they’ve got to
    get you in a scene.
    Jane from Boston

  2. Thanks for sending that link; I can add it to my list of livecams (including the eagles, the kodiak bears, and my own New England harbors) on which it’s possible to while away some fascinating hours.

  3. Two years ago that was us on Highway 101. Or 1. Or whatever. When we never made it as far as you because of an inconvenient family death! Stood where you stood. Did Hearst Castle (loved it). Love your jumper on you!

  4. Forget all that scenic beauty and stuff…LOOK AT THAT SWEATER!!! It turned out great!

  5. Love the sweater! Love the background! We’ve been there! Next time you come out our way we have to plan a meet up. Did you see the Hearst Castle visitor’s cottage where Shirley Temple stayed? Did you hit the yarn store in Monterrey/Pacific Grove? Oh! Did you stop at Kaffe’s family restaurant Nepenthe? (We’ve always been too car sick to stop there. Hwy 1 is beautiful but not for the car sick.)

  6. Isn’t that the most glorious stretch of real estate in the country? A feast for the eyes for sure.

  7. Oooh, I’ve driven that highway and was even lucky enough to live on the Oregon coast for a while. LOVELY!!

  8. The perfect trip for the inauguration of the sweater! It looks beautiful against the seascape.
    Hwy 1 is inspiring, we drove down it from Oregon 101 to the Golden Gate in 2006, such a lovely, lovely drive. We somehow managed to come home with some yarn and a kitten.
    Someday, come visit the Oregon Coast, I’ll bring you and your hungry boys some treats.

  9. I’m hoping to drive the Pacific Highway between L.A. and San Francisco in November. Any tips about where to stop, hotels etc would be welcome.

  10. Wow, is it weird to see you in California.

  11. Love the scenery, the seals, the sweater! I have been enjoying your frequent posts. Please say ‘hello’ to Kay from all.of us out here. I hope all is well.

  12. How nice to see your Starmore in the wild. The last time I was on Highway 1 it was the eighties and it must have been in July or August. The road was then lined with eucalyptus trees which smelled wonderful and were a beautiful blueish grayish green. I understand they are extremely flammable and they have probably all gone up in smoke, but they are a wonderful memory. Twisty, scary driving sometimes, but lovely.

  13. Ah, I lived in Santa Barbara for a couple of years! So nice to see the beach and all that spring greenery! The sweater looks lovely, and I wish I had that Starmore book, too!

  14. Gorgeous sweater, dear! The background almost comes up to its standard.

  15. Actually wearing a sweater you yourself made! What a novel idea! Somehow when I make a sweater for myself I love it while I am doing it but then….eh….
    Pacific Coast = beautiful, want to go there!

  16. I love how different the sweater looks in the full body shot, as opposed to all the “up close and personal” shots we got when you were working on it. It’s beautiful.

  17. love the sweater, looks like perfect weather for it. Did you see any sea otters? they’re my favorite.

  18. Yes, yes! Love the elephant seals in all of their giant, aggressive, love-sick glory. The best is watching foolish humans approach them. The male leader of a harem doesn’t take too kindly to that and goes from an inert ball of blub to a ton of very fast, scary female protector.
    Sweater’s great, too. Really great.

  19. Wow. The sweater in sunlight achieves its full destiny.
    Stunning!

  20. Quite a few years back my husband and I did a BackRoads bike tour down the Pacific Coast Highway. Made him drive up it first so he could see what he’d gotten himself into- suprisingly, you felt safer and more in control on a bicycle. Sweater looks great in out in the world! Pacific Coast Highway is the perfect place for it.

  21. Ann, you look so purty in that sweater! Yes, the wonders of the Pacific are not to be disputed. I feel fortunate being close enough to similar environs here in Oregon. And yes, the nausea-invoking powers of the PC Hwy also not in dispute. What’s this about a Kaffe-related restaurant? And can you give more details about this new seal-inspired colorway? Does it include shades like Blubber brown and Seasick green?

  22. Sweater looks great! And thanks for sharing your vacation pictures. I may be heading there in November, so it’s nice to see what I have to look forward to.
    P.S. I think we broke the Elephant Seal LiveCam. Just clicked on the link to it and they say they are having technical difficulties. Guess they didn’t know about us, huh?

  23. Hey, you were almost in my neck of the woods! According to Google maps you would only have needed to drive 624 miles from San Francisco, CA to Newport, OR! : )
    I’m so glad that you were able to experience the beauty firsthand. We feel very lucky to live here.

  24. GORGEOUS sweater! Looks great after all that work….

  25. You look great in that sweater! It was worth all the hair pulling and tears.

  26. I’m in awe of the sweater and the scenery.

  27. I can’t believe I missed you and that fabulous sweater. I’m an elephant seal docent and a Hearst Castle docent. Wish I’d been there to explain the sand flipping and inertia. (It’s temperature control and conservation of resources. They are fasting for a month while they molt.)

  28. Oh Ann! What a wonderful picture! You look lovely; and, there you are in that magical place wearing THE sweater! Thank you so much for sharing a part of your vacation with us.
    LoveDiane

  29. I haven’t been that far south on the highway but it looks gorgeous. Sweater and flipped photo look great!

  30. You look great in that sweater in sunny California! Yes, the Pacific Coast is truly awesome.

  31. The coast is gorgeous, the sweater looks great, and you look like a very happy woman on a holiday trip! But please, please explain that second photo a bit…because unless you are traveling with two sets of twins, I am a bit baffled.
    And if you are traveling with two sets of twins, I am surprised that this has never come up before!

  32. The Swarthmore Sweater (say that fast ten times) is gorgeous, even more so in the foggy coastal light of Hwy 1. I hope you stopped at Nepenthe and checked out the basement boutique/homage to Kaffe, so that your fair-isle could converse with some mighty impressive intarsia.

  33. Oops, that would be Starmore, obviously. I have college admissions and graduations on the old brain right now.

  34. You did Alice proud with your gorgeous sweater. I do have a copy of PCH and you’re welcome to it. Patterns are beautiful but wasted on me. Let me know how to get it to you.
    Kathleen

  35. a real travel yarn thank you

  36. Ann, you are so funny. I live in NC but have worked in Southern California for years. So here’s the question – why can’t we have their weather in The South? That would make knitting cosy thingies in July so much more, well, cosy.

  37. BTW, were you all at Esalen? One of your pics looks like it coud have been shot there. Just asking.
    LoveDiane

  38. BTW, were you all at Esalen? One of your pics looks like it coud have been shot there. Just asking.
    LoveDiane

  39. I think you were fated to finish that sweater in time to wear it on this trip. The one time I was on a similar trip, there was a lone elephant seal on a particular beach that had been laying around fake sleeping. Then when gawkers came closer to get a good gawk, it was attacking them. Apparently elephant seals get grumpy unless they see a Starmore now and then. Thanks for doing your part.

  40. Good medicine for my Starmore blues – elephanths baby blanket limping along at primordial pace only recently trumped by realization that the kit contained incorrect yarn amounts.heavy sigh! Hopefully Pacific sunshine on the horizon, otherwise I’m selling Alice’s patterns cheap…or maybe I should let the project age like your Donegal….hmmm, but then my great-nephew would be 5ish when he gets the blanket — awkward, in a non-British, not-funny way, especially for an Indiana child.Oh well.

  41. Good medicine for my Starmore blues – elephanths baby blanket limping along at primordial pace only recently trumped by realization that the kit contained incorrect yarn amounts.heavy sigh! Hopefully Pacific sunshine on the horizon, otherwise I’m selling Alice’s patterns cheap…or maybe I should let the project age like your Donegal….hmmm, but then my great-nephew would be 5ish when he gets the blanket — awkward, in a non-British, not-funny way, especially for an Indiana child.Oh well.

  42. Look at that sweater — it is just gorgeous! And so is the scenery – one of my vague plans for future retirement, if it ever comes, is to drive up the California coast…..

  43. Okay, make my heart ache down here in Los Angeles C
    ounty with shots of my heart’s home. In February, we buried my dad in Cambria Cemetary, a secret spot locals love in the woods (want wind chimes on your plot? A bird bath? Anything goes). I’m glad when anyone walks that wooden path along the coast.

  44. Adobe Yarn shop is so ‘Secret Garden’ like, and right across the street from the mission in down town San Luis Obispo. So glad to see pics of our beloved central coast of California. Get yourself the ‘Coastal Knit’ book by Alana Dakos. It has some beach photography and patterns from the places you visited.