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Dear Ann,

Although the sewing and the woading and the flea marketing kept me busy on my travels, I also kept knitting. I was working on another Metronome, the pattern so nice I knit it twice. I felt a little guilty for casting on Metronome Numéro Deux when my first one was lying there with its ends unwoven and its fabric unblocked. Sad! My punishment was that I could really have used a nice cotton-y wrap on my trip, but it had stayed home.

This past Sunday, I learned (relearned) this basic principle: wet-blocking cotton yarn in high humidity goes slow. Real slow.


The fan did not seem to be speeding things up, since the air it was circulating was 69 percent water, but the breeze felt good..


Eventually, my Metronome dried out, and was the better for its dampening.


(Yarn: Berroco Indigo. Pattern: Metronome by Julia Farwell-Clay.)


The KonMari fan in me is worried by crescent-shaped shawls. How exactly are you supposed to fold them? Or as KonMari would put it, how do they want to be folded? I am waiting for my Metronome to tell me.


Right now it wants to hang on picture hooks, or around Carrie’s neck.

Baton Rouge 

Knitters’ response to Emily Ringelman’s predicament has been so uplifting. I have not been able to stop thinking about the situation in Baton Rouge. I know that many people feel that the news coverage of the disaster has not been what it should be in light of the terrible damage suffered there. As a New Yorker, I cannot help comparing it to the coverage of Storm Sandy in 2011–and by that measure it certainly falls short.

Over the weekend, I listened to this NPR piece on nurse Trinice Rose, who lost everything in Katrina. Now the Baton Rouge home that was her family’s haven from that disaster has been ruined. Her story is heartbreaking, and inspiring; so much strength in hardship.

New Orleanian Amisha Sharma is a knitter, sewist, lawyer and photographer. Baton Rouge is Amisha’s hometown, and she has been collecting handmade pillowcases and money for pillows to distribute in Baton Rouge. She’s also raising funds by doing family photo sessions, on film. (Old school film!)

Screen Shot 2016-08-23 at 7.19.56 PM

For details on both of these projects, see Amisha’s Instagram; you can leave her a comment there. A photographer here on the Upper West Side did similar fundraisers after both Katrina and Sandy; she not only raised a sizeable chunk of relief money, but also, thanks to her I have photos of my boy in his last moments of being the smallest of four cousins. (He’s now the tallest. Sigh.)

I asked Amisha for some other ways to help, and here was her response:

I’ve been polling community organizer friends in Baton Rouge for good places to donate cash, and there are a few places and causes that I’m partial to as well.  There are a couple of GoFundMe campaigns that I have heard about that seem great:
This one for North Baton Rouge (this is the historically black part of town that is not getting much press);
And this one for public defenders.
There is also an organization called Together Baton Rouge which is made up of community organizers and faith leaders and they are using donations to directly purchase needed goods for families.  
And finally, the United Way which is working with a lot of community groups too.
Thanks, Amisha, for these suggestions on how to help.


  • Kay, your finished wrap is beautiful. I especially like the third color of the border, that nicely completes it. And I think garter stitch is the most photographic of all stitches, especially when worn by Carrie! xo Tammy

    • Things to Know from The Daily Skimm:

      Shawling: Not something your grandma does. It’s apparently the new word you use when someone is wearing an off-the-shoulder top.

  • Thank you so much for the list of charities that are accepting donations to help the flood victims of the Baton Rouge area.

  • Love that wrap. Maybe roll it around an empty paper towel roll. That is how I save bits of paper.
    I made two pillow cases and donated some monsy for pillows. That was an great idea to give people a place to rest their heads.

  • Every morning brings a lovely piece from you ladies, but today’s especially so. When you get the Kon Marization for crescent shawls, please share. It has bedeviled me (and my shelves) for eons. More importantly, thanks for keeping the LA families in our minds eye and offering ways we can be helpful.

  • Love the shawl! Love the chance to help even more! Thank you.

  • I shared the original Baton Rouge post on Facebook and was happy to see that at least one of my non-knitter friends purchased a pattern as a gift for one of her knitting friends.

  • I second Martha’s comment about rolling shawls. I noticed my mother in law did that with her heirloom tablecloths – she used larger giftwrap-sized rolls as her core. That way the fabric doesn’t get creased.

  • Thanks. My sister’s husband is from Baton Rouge and both his parents had flooding in their homes. 🙁

    • I keep reading of this situation where older and younger generations are both out of their houses, adding enormously to the stress.

  • Why not hang the scarves over hangers. You could even put up hooks on an empty wall (yeah, right), and hang the hangers, with scarves on them, as wall decoration.

  • Here at 1 pm it’s 83F and 12 percent humidity. So maybe consider a desert vacation to block your handknits.

  • It’s not just Baton Rouge. Sadly, much of south Louisiana was flooded. We have several large rivers, and they all hit historic record highs, sending water into homes all along their floodplain. My mom’s house had 20″ of water in it. As I type this, I’m listening to the whine of saws hacking away the lower half of 40-year-old wooden walls, walls that I primed, painted and kept clean, walls that surrounded my family last Christmas. It’s funny what hits hardest. I didn’t mind seeing the cabinets and furniture hauled out to the highway, but hearing the walls dismantled is like watching something I knitted go up in smoke.

    • Just imagining that sound makes me sad. I’m so sorry for your loss, and hope you and your family are safe.

      • oh this breaks my heart. sending you healing prayers and knitterly love.

  • I roll up crescent shawls, and then stack them in a box (which has cedar balls in it for extra security)

  • Thanks for the links. So hard to know what to do.

  • thanks for posting good places to donate to help folks in Baton Rouge–now that I finally made some money this summer I am trying to pay some of it forward, so donated to one of the go fund me places you recommended via Emily. Love the shawl!

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