Monday, March 29, 2010


After approximately one year of knitting, on and off, as I worked on socks and things for gifts & etc., I finished the "Cozy" [see] in laceweight.

It's washed and blocking now, and it's lovely. If I say so myself.

I used a merino single, very, very soft with a bit of halo. It's in an almost (but not quite) varigated aqua, incorporating shades of chartreuse, turquoise and sky blue. The original pattern calls for a tweedy worsted, but I used this...not that I didn't think the worsted was a good idea, but I didn't think I had enough in one color.

The resulting wrap/shawl is a rectangle, 5' by about 2.5'.

It should be dry tomorrow, and I can't wait to wear it.

Now to finish my 30s sweater and get the baby sweater off the needles!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Clarence Budington Kelland

Mr. Kelland was a writer of movie scripts, novels, and best of all, short stories. The ones that I love have a central character named Scattergood Baines.

I first read these stories in the old magazines that we collect. (That's one of the best things about vintage magazines. The stories were stories, and not exercises in peculiar ego or Angst.)

Mr. Baines was "born" in 1915, and Mr. Kelland wrote about him for years, first in the Saturday Evening Post, and then The American (Magazine). The character is a down-home, folksy fella who doesn't often impress onlookers first. They then find out, to their chagrin or benefit, that not only is he clever, his brilliance is something to have on one's own side whenever possible.

Scattergood Baines likes to dabble. In people, primarily, but he likes to make a cash profit whenever possible as well. Combining the two is his favorite way of operating. Prodigal sons, orphaned babies, young lovers, old folks who've had their independence taken away...he saves them all, one way or another, and you only wish that he lived in your town.

Many of the stories have been collected in hardcover, and are even available in present day editions, though of course I prefer the originals. After finding the first collection at the Providence Athenaeum I trolled the Internet for a copy, expecting it to be available and not too expensive. I was wrong...I'm not the only one, even now, who appreciates him! However, I lucked out recently on a "new" collection, Scattergood Baines Returns.

Check your library's old stacks for it. Reading a few of these stories is almost a vacation, even for some time after you close the book. You'll be glad you made the effort.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Check List for Spring

Yes, the workroom is cleaned up. Not pristine, you understand, but I can work in there now. I even made a (sewn) hat last week. Birthday present.

And I worked on a blanket square for someone on Knitty. So it's back to the correct function. The cleared out "stuff" went to the thrift shop, too.

We've had (it would seem) a very early spring this year. Not only have I tidied up the front garden and sidewalk, DH and I cleaned up the yard. It's still ugly and asphalt, but the chairs are out, I scored lots of earthworms, which are now in the garden and a container where I plan to plant herbs this year, and many encroaching vines and tree branches have been cut back.

Knitting has suffered a bit. There's a WIP--a baby sweater--that's well on its way. I even have the buttons. But right now I'm working on a 20s style headpiece for the next Chifferobe, which we'll go to on Friday. The socks I started last week got frogged, when I realized the instep pattern wasn't properly centered. I'm afraid to start another pair, because I don't want to be led astray from the baby sweater, even though it's not needed just yet. The Sweater Curse, you know.

Speaking of which, the 30s sweater is still in pieces. Soon, though, I will finish it. Sure. I only hope that pigs don't fly first.

What's everyone else doing to celebrate the spring?

Friday, March 05, 2010

Pathetic, but mine own (excuse).

So...I did finish knitting the sweater. It's not finished, however. My excuse? My work room is so messy [read: a pig sty] that I have no where safe to block it. I always block the pieces before I sew seams and pick up neckline stitches.

Is that an excuse? Well, if you had a cat nicknamed Destructo the Wonder Kitty it would be.

I am currently knitting another pair of belated birthday socks for a friend because Than Chai helped himself to #1 as I was finishing sock #2 of the first pair.

Of course the real problem is me...I need to clean out the work room, which is presently "functioning" more as the house dump. Stock for my booth, clothes to be mended, books, gifts, and God-knows-what is covering nearly every square foot. Not to mention the ironing.

With any luck, admitting this online will be embarassing enough that I'll finally clean the place up and keep it that way. For a while, at least...