Tuesday, January 24, 2017


It's the Yarn Harlot's blogiversary again (gee, it feels as though that happens EVERY year around this time - weird), and I am once again celebrating the occasion by giving away a copy of her book Knitting Rules. Not your ordinary how-to-knit book, it's more a compendium of whimsical ruminations on the art of knitting, the nature of creativity, and the intoxicating effects of yarn fumes. All wrapped together with a few knitting recipes for an ambitious beginner to try at his/her leisure, of course...

Oh, look, it has a new cover!
As I mentioned in this space 2 years ago, this book changed my life. By treating failure as a normal part of the creative process, it freed me to try new things; by virtue of her personal knitting anecdotes, Stephanie gave me permission to knit even though my supplies were not organized and I could never find the right needles. She allowed me to make mistakes and keep going, because really, who cares? This book helped shatter the bonds of perfectionism that kept me from ever getting anything done.

Also, it's very funny.

I know, it's just a knitting book. How the heck could it do all that? Beats me. And maybe your results will differ. But if you are interested, drop a comment on this post and I will draw a name out of a hat (figuratively speaking, of course) on, oh, I don't know...Friday? Yeah, Friday - that's usually a slow news day around here.

And, speaking of news, Larry forwarded this BBC article to me yesterday. According to some scientists, "Browned toast and potatoes are 'potential cancer risks'..." Apparently, browned foods contain large amounts of acrylamide, which is a cancer-causing chemical.

To which I say, just kill me now. I mean, our thrift-store toaster alone must have taken years off our lives already.

Click that link - it explains an awful lot about our family.

And buttered toast just so happens to be one of humankind's universal comfort foods - can the world afford to have that taken away at this point? From where I sit, lately it feels as though the only things holding us all together are pink knitted hats and nice, crunchy toast.

Buttered toast.

[Mercy Watson image: Randomly Reading]


  1. I recently found myself with way too much time on my hands when I broke my ankle,but little knitting motivation. Maybe this book will help.

  2. I have started announcing to people when I am working on a project that I am Amish and included the mistakes to ensure that God is still the only perfect one and that I meant to make those mistakes! Sounds like this book is right up my alley!

  3. One of my favorite winter breakfast foods is a bowl of warm homemade applesauce with hot buttered toast on the side. (Cinnamon raisin toast if I'm feeling extravagant.)

    And that is an excellent knitting book- I too have a copy.

  4. Anything by the Yarn Harlot is a good read. ☺
    And FWIW, my breakfast of choice is Cream of Wheat with a side of overly browned, heavily buttered and lightly cinnamon'd toast.

  5. Who me, knit? I love the Harlot, and am looking forward to getting to know you. The posts I just read would appear to relate to my life path. My name is Christine and I am a quilter. Fiber is fiber and I love them all; yarn,fabric,thread.;-)

  6. Maybe this will bring me out of the doldrums caused by trying to knit a pattern that MAY be a little too complicated for my skills. Thankfully, that doesn't seem to be my problem when it comes to reading!

  7. I love her so much! Also think her books are life changing though I find it mildly disturbing that she is my age and becoming a grandma this year. She did start popping out babies just a bit earlier than me (but not by much.)

  8. Fan of the Harlot (and of you too), I just regret that you probably would not ship the book to France. Or would you ? I always say that one small mistake in a knit garment is like a small label saying "c'est moi qui l'ai fait".

  9. I have been trying to knit for about 5 years with limited success, I need to progress past scarves and hats. This book might just do it for me. I adore your blog. We have been on a french toast binge lately. Whats better than brown eggy bread?

    Sue H

  10. Don't include me! I have the book and love it. But if you ever get the chance to go and hear her speak in person, GO! It is so much fun!
    And I intend to keep on enjoying toast and butter. Too late for me to stop, thank goodness.

    1. I'm a groupie, so I've heard her twice - the first time in 2007, and then again at WEBS in 2008. It was great, both times!

  11. A friend was just recommending that book to me!

  12. Not ready to take on knitting yet, but I love knitting blogs - go figure. No toast is always the line where the "clean eating" stops. For me? Buttered toast is a MAJOR food group.

  13. I don't knit, but I do sew - mostly Halloween costumes and curtains. Halloween costumes are much more forgiving.

    This post reminded me of how wonderful a piece of toast is now and then. I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease 1.5 years ago - such a bummer! (I know, I know - there's gluten free bread and all - just not the same).

  14. While searching through my yarn stash this week I found many knitting needles. All very pretty, though useless since I need help knitting (I usually crochet). This book would be very helpful for me!

  15. Okay - you got me, I am leaving a comment. After furiously knitting two hats last week - I am interested in knitting again. Might as well throw my hat in the ring (pun intended) for this highly recommended book. If it will make me laugh and throw my perfectionism away, plus give me some basic patterns - I think It will be a good fit.

  16. There is something really reassuring about being invited to try something and the whole "you're going to screw up, no biggie, just unravel and try again" is part of the message.