Thursday, June 22, 2017


Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Crochet - A Table Mat from 1953

From the February, 1953 issue of Workbasket magazine.  Three pages of instructions can be found on my Flickr account, along with instructions on how to take the lettering off of feedsacks,  the Fat Girl's Diet and something that looks like a scold's bridle but promises that Fifteen Minutes a Day Brings Thrilling New Loveliness!

In related news, I was free for a few hours one morning last week and hit a couple of local thrift shops returning with -- among other treasures -- a dozen copies of Workbasket, only one of which I already had (I had to buy the lot).

When one of my fellow trainees heard this, she mentioned that she had all of her aunt's copies and did I want them?

(hell, yes).

Monday, June 19, 2017

Vintage Advertising - Camel Cigarettes

From Adventure magazine, February 1930 - back when men going topless on the beach was unheard of.

Saturday, June 17, 2017


Monday, June 12, 2017

On The Road Again

Off for another week of training. Blogging will resume on Caturday!

Saturday, June 10, 2017


Friday, June 9, 2017

Quote of the Day

Still Life with Melon by Luis Melendez

It is hard to provide and cook so simple and clean a diet as will not offend the imagination, but this, I think is to be fed when we feed the body; they should both sit down at the same table. ~ Henry David Thoreau

Thursday, June 8, 2017

They're Enjoying The Scenery, Too

Because Sam asked for photos ~

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Knitting - Golf Mitts from 1953

It's still almost two weeks till Father's Day -- knit fast.

From Workbasket magazine, February 1953.  One double-page of instructions on my Flickr account.

Monday, June 5, 2017

Saturday, June 3, 2017


Thursday, June 1, 2017

With Apologies to Gertrude Stein

Kittehs on the grass alas.
Kittehs on the grass alas.
Short longer grass short longer longer shorter yellow grass.
Kittehs large kittehs on the shorter longer yellow grass alas kittehs on the grass.
If they were not kittehs what were they.
If they were not kittehs on the grass alas what were they.  He had heard of a third and he asked about if it was a magpie in the sky.
If a magpie in the sky on the sky can not cry if the kitteh on the grass alas can alas and to pass the kitteh on the grass alas and the magpie in the sky on the sky and to try and to try alas on the grass alas the kitteh on the grass the kitteh on the grass and alas.
They might be very well they might be very well very well they might be.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Cost/Benefit Analysis

photo from

We're having a new driveway poured.

1. It's smelly and noisy, we won't be able to use the driveway until they're done, and Batdog is upset.

2. My side yard is full of half-naked, muscular young men.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Crochet - A Rose & Pineapple Doily from 1953

From Workbasket magazine, February 1953. Instructions are on my Flickr account.

Monday, May 29, 2017

Friday, May 26, 2017

Quote Of The Day

And He shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain; for the former things are passed away. ~ Revelations 21:4

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Getting Ready for Buenos Aires

They're going to have to work on that form if they expect to medal in Synchronized Stretching.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Friday, May 19, 2017

Eheu fugaces

Batdog and I were in line at the Post Office when a small voice piped up "Look, mommy - that grandma has a puppy!"

Of course when I told Brian he laughed.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

The Online Bookshelf - British Butterflies

From, with beautiful color plates to download for free.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

The Massacre Of The Innocents

image from Pinterest

Reserve Cat went outside at about 7am and stayed out for ten hours.  He is ignoring his food dish. 

There may be a nexus between this, and the nest of baby bunnies in the side yard.

Crochet - Baby Bootees from 1954

From the February, 1953 issue of Workbasket magazine, a set of crocheted baby bootees.  One page of instructions on my Flickr account.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Minx Redux


Someone has knitted the Minx and put it on Ravelry

Vintage Magazines - Teen-Age Romances, August 1951

Saturday, May 13, 2017


Friday, May 12, 2017

Quote Of The Day

Sympathy, by Briton Riviere

Nothing that grieves us can be called little; by the eternal laws of proportion a child's loss of a doll and a king's loss of a crown are events of the same size.  ~ Mark Twain 

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Wednesday, May 10, 2017


Compared to Ireland, Brian got off easy.  I visited only two yarn shops.  The first was in Verona, a tiny but memorable shop named after the owner, Jenny Klaer

The selection is amazing for the amount of space she has, and she carries vegetable-dyed merino from Dr Valentina Ferrarini. Why oh why didn't I buy more?

 In a moment of pure serendipity, when I strolled back to the Piazza dei Signori after getting not nearly enough yarn, there was a demonstration of yarn spinning and dying with none other than Dr Ferrarini herself showing off her plants and her process.

The second shop was a chain called Tricot Cafe in Padua, and offered a variety of quilting, knitting, and beadwork supplies.  I resisted temptation too successfully, I'm afraid.  I only got the book.

The bag came from the street market in San Gimignano.  Other than the yarn and some ecclesiastical necessities (rosary from the Vatican for a nephew who is being confirmed, etc), I didn't buy a lot; a couple of cheap scarves from street vendors in Mantua and Florence, the obligatory refrigerator magnets, a tablecloth.

Of all the towns we saw (Rome, Florence, Monteriggioni, San Gimignano, Florence, Pisa, Mantua, Verona and Venice), I liked Mantua the best only because it seemed such a personable and friendly town.  If it weren't for the cobblestones (original, knobby, extremely difficult to walk on), I could see myself living there. 

UPDATE: The lavender is laceweight 100% merino and is going to be either a stole or a shawl in a lace stitch.  The grey and the variegated are sock yarns and are going to be...socks.  I'm thinking of trying these socks for the grey.

Dr Ferrarini's merino is 200 meters and I have no clue what to make that will not be too plain (ie stockinette) and still show off the color gradations.  I wonder if she does mail order and how much it will run me to order two more skeins. 

Saturday, May 6, 2017


I'm happy.  The kitties are happy.

Batdog is really happy.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Danger, Will Robinson

There's a yarn shop four blocks from the hotel.

Saturday, April 29, 2017


I would kill for a foot rub right now.

Friday, April 21, 2017

He Doesn't Like The Looks Of This

He's been eyeing the suitcase with misgivings all evening.

Quote Of The Day

image from Pinterest

Sometimes I feel that Trappist monasteries weren't really founded in any excess of asceticism but just to fulfill a felt need, a place where the naturally silent might escape from the born talkers. ~ Winifred Peck

Thursday, April 20, 2017

We're Surrounded

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Arrivederci, Baby

On my bucket list, because I want to see it before it disappears forever. I'm leaving Saturday.

Tatting - A Ruffled Doily from 1953

An elaborately ruffled, tatted doily from the February, 1953 issue of Workbasket magazine. Two pages of instructions on my Flickr account, along with tips on how to stiffen the end product using sugar.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Vintage Magazines - Galaxy, August 1959

Another BEM (Bug-Eyed Monster) encounter.

Sunday, April 16, 2017

The Enabler

I introduced the New Kids to catnip.

Friday, April 14, 2017

Quote Of The Day

It's practically impossible to look at a penguin and stay angry. ~ Joe Moore

Thursday, April 13, 2017

The Online Bookshelf - Fifty Birds Of Town And City

Published by the US Dept of the Interior, with full-color illustrations.  No date, but the foreword reads:

Early in this century, the old Bureau of Biological Survey put out a booklet called “Fifty Common Birds of Farm and Orchard,” with paintings by Louis Agassiz Fuertes.

In 1962, a former Fish and Wildlife Service staffer named Rachael Carson wrote “Silent Spring,” a book that changed American thinking about birds—and pesticides.

That first volume is out of date because of our great population shifts in six decades. And I hope that “Silent Spring” will be out of date some day; that our birds will live with us in an unpoisoned environment of cities and towns that are cleaner, healthier, greener.

So here is a new “bird book” from the Department of the Interior, geared to the 50 birds you might see in your city, with paintings done by a man who picked up the fallen Fuertes brush, Bob Hines. These are not endangered birds, except as all living things are endangered; some of them are living in or passing through your backyard or city park right now. Look well at Bob’s art; he is not commemorating the passenger pigeon but trying to open your eyes to the world about you.

And he is trying to suggest that these birds can live in our towns and cities so long as you help provide the healthy habitat they need, habitat that is healthy not just for them but for you.

Enjoy this little book, learn from it, and take a vow that our springs will not be silent of bird calls—and will be more silent of human clatter.

Free download at Project Gutenberg.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Scrap Craft - A Coin Purse from 1953

A day late but maybe not a dollar short -- here's a coin purse for children, to make out of leather or felt scraps and decorate with buttons from Mom's stash.  From the February, 1953 issue of Workbasket, one page of instructions can be found on my Flickr account.

Saturday, April 8, 2017

He Said We Needed A New Garage

Only took him about ten hours to demolish the old one.  Single-handed.

Friday, April 7, 2017


Notice how he has pulled it into a nice little pile so he doesn't have to share.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Kiss Me, I'm Irish

Reserve Cat has competition for the Irish stole.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Crochet - An Easter Bonnet from 1953

"Light and Airy As A Fairy" -- a crocheted cap for your Easter bonnet from the February, 1953 issue of Workbasket magazine.  One page of instructions may be found on my Flickr account.

Monday, April 3, 2017

Vintage Advertising - Palmolive Soap

From the Woman's Home Companion, sometime in 1921.The costume in the lower right hand corner is...interesting.

Saturday, April 1, 2017


Thursday, March 30, 2017


Monday, March 27, 2017

This Is Why I Get So Little Knitting Done

Evidently Google now will snatch photos off your drive and enhance them. It coyly notified me that a picture I'd snapped had been through the process to make it look like something by Eugene Atget.

Anyway, that's Sheba and a ball of vintage cream mohair that I now have to hide.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Eastward Ho!

Headed for the Indiana state line with two other instructors to conduct an orientation for new volunteers.  Blogging will resume on Monday.