Hysteria and navajo plying

I hardly feel like I can blog today, after the start this week has had. No kids have left the nest, I have no major life events to report…nothing. I’ve finally managed to put the book down and have stopped carrying it around the house like the holy grail, since I only have one copy, I’m still protective (read: neurotically obsessed) about it. Many thanks for all the congratulations and well wishes for its success. I’m excited about the moment that one of you gets a copy or someone sees it in a bookstore. (I have decided that going to the bookstore to wait is not appropriate). Do me a favour and e-mail instantly will you? (Someone other than me getting a book is the final proof that this is real and happening.)

Q & A from the comments:

How do I get a signed copy? Well freak me right out. Seriously? Me? Of my book?

Tell you what, let’s wait for a bit and see if the urge passes. If you still want it signed I’d wait until the list of places I’ll be trucking to is revealed and see if I’ll be in your neighbourhood. If that’s not going to work, send me an email and I’ll give you my address. You can mail the book along with a self addressed stamped envelope (or an “International reply coupon” if you don’t live in Canada) and I’ll sign the thing and ship it back. No bribes of chocolate, coffee or yarn are necessary…since the honour is all mine.

Where are you going on the book tour? Book tour? Those words make me nauseous and a little dizzy. As of this moment I can tell you that I’ll be in Memphis (!!!) on the 25th of April, and New York City (!!!) on the 28th. Details of where, what time and so on are to follow along with other places..assuming of course that my brain doesn’t explode and leak out of my right ear.

How on earth will Joe, the girls and Mr. Washie carry on? I don’t know. These are things that are not being discussed. We are nervously avoiding the issue (along with the idea the Joe would need to get up at 7:30 in the morning for several days running, a feat that has no precedent for record producer/musicians). I think it’s going to get all Lord of the Flies pretty quickly.

Nervous? Petrified. I can’t shake the feeling that I’m masquerading as an author and any minute now they are going to figure out who I really am and what my hair really looks like and that I’m really five foot nuthin and stark raving mad and rethink the whole thing. I don’t know what would be worse, cancelling, or going through with it. The only thing I’m holding on to is that you aren’t complete strangers (in that virtual buddy internet kind of way) and that hopefully at least one of you will smile at me, thus allowing me to get my arse into a chair, hold a pen and stop quaking long enough to smile back. No promises. At this moment I can promise high entertainment value at each and every one of these things, since there is an equal possibility that I will be talkative and emotionally present or that I will snap and run screaming into the street babbling about sock heels, my cat and looking for my mummy. You have to figure that’s going to be entertaining either way.

Naturally, all this angst has led to maniacal knitting and spinning and a failure to reply to email and clean the house. Big surprise.

I sat down to navajo ply the singles I spun from Laurie’s roving.


Since navajo plying isn’t as easy as a regular ply, (for me, anyway) I really need a good reason to engage in it. Basically speaking, navajo plying is a long chain stitch with twist added to it. You tie a loop onto the bobbin leader, and then pull the next loop through it, over and over, letting the twist follow along. There’s several clips and photos available where you can watch someone do this. Look here, and here for starters.

Disadvantages: (reasons why I don’t navajo ply everything)

-it’s not that easy, and takes a little more co-ordination than a regular ply

-the spun yarn is not as strong as a regular ply

-it’s easy to “overply” if you have poor wheel control.

– it is less forgiving of uneven spinning than ordinary three ply.

-the “knots” (where you pull a new loop through) are visible, especially in a bulkier single. I don’t really notice them in sock weight yarn, but they might bug somebody else.


-no leftovers, since you are plying from one bobbin of singles.

-none of the crazy making insanity where you end up making yourself squirrly trying to get your singles divided evenly onto three bobbins.

-It keeps your colours separate. Because it’s a long chain, the colour changes in the single will be preserved, just 1/3 as long.

-it makes a three ply, and theoretically speaking, a three ply is sturdier.

-Done right, (which would mean “done by someone else”) It’s sort of impressive to watch.

As with all plying the wheel (or spindle) is spun in the direction opposite to the one you spun the singles with. I cannot stress enough the importance of remembering this, since screwing it up leads to an unspun tangled disaster from which there is little recovery. (Experienced spinners are cracking themselves up over this one…but I swear that no-one told me, and I’d never seen it done…and I recognize that it is not a credit to my intelligence that I didn’t figure it out for a little while. Let’s just leave how long “a little while” was to the imagination. I thought my wheel was broken. Dumbass.)

I use the setup in the picture above, with my lazy kate between my legs so that I can draw the singles straight up. Trial and error has led me to tension the kate with a complex series of wool washers and elastic bands. If I don’t put a little resistance on the kate, when I pull the singles up through the loop the kate continues to spew singles at me and the twist kinks them up into little knots that are an enormous pain in the arse to pull cleanly through the loop. I also set the tension on the wheel pretty high, so that the wheel is pulling in one direction, the kate in another and nothing can get away from me. I can tell you from experience that if your singles are softly spun and/or very fine, you might want to forget everything I’ve just said about tension. These more fragile singles can’t take the heat. They break repeatedly causing uncontrollable bursts of foul language and yarn that sucks.


Here you can see what I do with my hands (more or less…I’m not the most co-ordinated of souls, and the picture does not describe for you the parts where I’m clutching, grabbing and tangled.) I hold the loop open with one hand, pull the new loop through with the other, and use my pointer finger on my left hand to keep the whole thing from collapsing. (Usually. I refer you to the above statement where this well designed system breaks down)

During navajo plying I find it helpful to treadle very, very slowly. Especially while you are getting the hang. For reasons that I cannot explain (possibly a doorway to the ninth dimension is involved) less twist seems necessary to properly ply this way. It could be that it’s taking the same number of treadles, but that I don’t notice because my hands are so busy. Either way, slower treadling seems to be key.

(I have now typed the word “treadle” so many times that no matter how I type it, it looks completely wrong. It probably is.) When you are finished, the twist is set the same way as with any other yarn.


Beauty, eh?

I’m thinking now about what I’ll knit with it. Socks for sure, but maybe not plain ones. Maybe fair isle with black, the colour shifting against it up the leg? I can’t forget how lovely Laurie’s were. Suggestions welcome. It would be a pity not to do it justice at this point.

I’m going to my guild meeting tonight. If you are there and you care (or would like to pretend you care), I’ll have the book in my bag. If you promise to be careful I might let you hold it and look at some of the pages. Maybe.

106 thoughts on “Hysteria and navajo plying

  1. I just checked amazon and while your book is still in pre-order status, you now rank #583 in sales for amazon. Pretty amazing. I sure hope that Cleveland, being just a skip away from Toronto, is on your book signing tour!

  2. OK, now I just have to mosey over to Amazon and track my book order. A book tour is very exciting… I can’t wait till you come to LA! That yarn is beautiful… the Navajo ply is lovely. Those colors would look like jewels set off against black, I think.

  3. Oh how I would love to peak at the book. I can not wait until I receive mine (which should be within the next week or so!). I am also hoping beyond all hope that you make it to Michigan. I already informed my husband that I will travel many, many miles to meet you in person. The only thing that bums me out is that I will not be able to say much to you, since I know the other countless number of Harloteers will be wanting to bend your ear just as much as I do. A thousand congrats again-you certainly do deserve it. Back to waiting by the mailbox….

  4. You were #103 on the Amazon.ca list this afternoon! That’s got to feel great. I hope you’re book tour stops in St. John’s, Newfoundland.

  5. I really, really hope that Chicago, Des Moines (dare I hope? dare! dare!), and maybe even the Quad Cities gets on your touring list — love to have you sign the book and give you a real hug instead of the starry kind (*hug*). As for Joe, Mr. Washie, the children and the nerves, darlin’, it’ll all work out in the end!
    And I can’t wait to see who gets a copy of the BookbookBoookbook first. I’m already envious. And still book-less-ly frustrated.

  6. I live in Memphis and can’t wait to get a copy of the bookbookbook. Please post details about when/where you will be so I can make arrangements to attend. Did you know you were the first person ever to leave a comment on my blog? Just a piece of “little known or less cared about info” as I like to call it. Congrats again on the book – once you believe it and can think clearly again I’m sure it will be a wonderful feeling.

  7. Note, I haven’t yet found a law making it illegal to visit bookstores and quietly rearrange the craft section to prominently feature your book cover-out on an eye-level shelf or on the aisle display. But I do NOT condone this. Not really.

  8. I didn’t get a chance to offer up my congratulations on the bookbookbook yesterday. So, Congratulations! I can’t wait to get my copy.
    The magical yarn of Laurie (with a Harlot twist) looks amazing. πŸ™‚

  9. I swear, I am so close to camping out at Yarn Forward till they get your book! And yes, I will CALL you the MOMENT I see a copy in person. Many many many congratulations on the book. It’s wonderful. πŸ™‚
    As for the Navajo plying, well… sure I can graft in two colours, but that plying? *That* gives me the willies!

  10. How can we wait? I hope that books comes quickly and your dates/places are announced soon, too. That yarn is beyond gorgeous. The idea of it with black would really show off the color.

  11. I completely understand how you feel about the book! I got a small article published in a minor research magazine a few months back, and I got ridiculously protective over my copy…
    I just checked at British Amazon today, and they had changed estimated delivery date of my preordered copy from end of March to end of May! The horror! But I’m trying to think positive, now I can call it a birthday gift to myself.

  12. The Washington DC area would be a nice stop inbetween Memphis and NYC hint hint hint…..

  13. You have to come to Kansas City! I’m not even picky about which side, I’ll drive into Missouri for you (and that’s quite a compliment). Lord of the Flies indeed. Gorgeous yarn, you two are quite the fiber tag team πŸ™‚

  14. Congrats on the book deal!! I’m going to have to break my self-imposed “no more books” diet. It’s just a matter of when.

  15. w00t! Can I add my congratulations to the offerings already heaped at your madly treadling feet?
    New York City, eh? I can get there from here . . . anyone else up for a Philly knitters’ field trip?
    Excuse me, I have to go put in my request for time off NOW!

  16. I didn’t get a chance yesterday either, that I recall, but I wanted to say congratulations. Unfortunately, your book tour coincides with finals week/graduation, I will not be able to see you in person. I’m sure there will be plenty of others willing and able to take my place.

  17. I do hope you can make it to Arizona! Preferably Changing Hands in Tempe, but I’ll take what I can get. I suspect that we could get a group together for a road trip, if need be. πŸ™‚
    I just ordered the bookbookbook at Changing Hands, and I am eagerly awaiting its arrival!

  18. There are some people who are going to go to these book signey thingys and be there for you. And lead you around strange cities and who are your friends even though you haven’t met them yet. And who are stalking the poor book shelving people at Barnes and Noble on a daily basis.
    You’ll be fine. Some of those same people are also only five feet tall. I promise.

  19. I’ll bet you’ll be on Oprah in the next year… or at least some tv morning show. I’m sure of it. I can’t wait for my book to come!

  20. Woo hoo for Navajo plying! It rocks. I’ve only ever plied something the “other” way twice! I Navajo plied up the bright peacock fleece the other day. Plus I freaked me out by wondering why you were spinning on my wheel, except mine has a knob on the left side of the maidens so that is ok!
    Book book book signing – don’t worry, you’ll only feel like a person with a bag of bread gone to feed the ducks. They’ll be noisy and over excited but don’t mean any harm. If there are any geese amongst ’em, spread your wings and hiss right back! 😎

  21. You’ll be in Memphis?!! Where, oh where? Got so excited I didn’t even finish reading your post. Congratulations on the book!

  22. you lost me at ‘navajo ply’…
    very excited re:postings from your upcoming book tour. do you need a roadie?

  23. Now I have to go call my doctor and cancel my follow up appointment for the 28th of April. At least I’m on vacation that week. Wherever in NYC you will be I will be there to give you moral support (and get my book signed!).

  24. Are you coming to Philly? We’re not far from New York and lots of knitters who know and love you are here. I pre-ordered my book from Amazon – can’t wait to get it.

  25. I ordered your book from my LIBS yesterday. The nice owner said it will be here in 10 days!!!
    Please come to Washington DC!

  26. Do you know where in Memphis yet? I hate that you have to come here (it is really not at all exciting), but maybe I’ll get to come by and get a signed book (which would be exciting)!

  27. Smile at you? Are you kidding? We’ll be bitch-fighting to see who gets to pick you up at the airport, have you sleep in their guest room, show you the sights, and drive you back to the airport.
    And yes, there are at least a few Harlotteers who are eye-to-eye and crazy-to-crazy with you!

  28. Congratulations! If you are anywhere in WI, I will make every effort to see you. I’ll even go as far as IL. (grin)
    As far as your family, I’m sure they’ll survive. And if it does get a little Lord-of-the-Flies-ish, you can always write a book about it…

  29. Congratulations! I will definitely be on line to get my copy signed when you are in NYC. I can only imagine how truly awesome (adj : inspiring awe or admiration or wonder) it must be to see your name on the book!

  30. Last weekend I dyed my wool according to Laurie and have been absolutely flabbergasted by how beautiful it is! I did small bits of many colorways and my roving is hanging up all over my basement, it looks like a Cristo exibit! I even have orange…
    Thank you Laurie! And thank you harlot! You gals rock!

  31. BOOK: Congratulations, Stephanie. I’m going to wait until I get back to home base next week and make sure that I get my local yarn store to order the book for me. (We don’t have a local independent bookstore, or even a local chain, but I think that every yarn shop MUST want to carry this book!)
    SOCKS: Okay, I got to see Laurie’s black-with-hand-dyed socks yesterday IN PERSON. (There’s no way I can keep that from sounding like a brag, so I’ll let it stand, even though it has nothing to do with my own fiber-worthiness!) They are spectacular, and everyone who possesses such beautiful yarn must make at least one pair of socks using the black-for-contrast technique.

  32. Will you ask the shops you’ll be signing at to take phoned/internet/e-mail requested signing orders? At least one or two in the states? It might save you the work of signing all that stuff and mailing it πŸ™‚ Plus, the store would have increased sales!
    It sounds like you need a Postal Box because knowing where an author lives is kinda creepy… Of course, this might also lead to many things smelling like coffee when they stew in the same box for a while.

  33. I havent posted recently but I have been reading at least once a week to catch up. The little one keeps me busy:)
    But congratulations on the book. If you are in Philadelphia please let us know:)
    I know you wont be coming to delaware – philly is the closest big city:)
    I’ll even bring the little one…
    Anyway the yarn is beautiful… and will make awesome socks!
    check out the photo gallery on my blog for pics of my baby girl Silver… shes cute:) yes im biased…

  34. I somehow have this feeling that you aren’t going to make it to Sydney, Australia for a book signing. But if you do, I’ll smile at you! I’ll even take you out to lunch and off to meet a koala and a kangaroo. We do good chocolate too. Unfortunately, our yarn is a little disappointing, but any other bribes I can offer up? Tim Tams?

  35. Stephanie, congratulations a million times over on the book! If you come to the San Francisco Bay Area on the tour I’ll be there with a big ol’ grin on. If not, though, who knows – I’m always up for an excuse to visit my ancestral home in New York. πŸ™‚
    Lovely yarn – can’t wait to see the resulting socks, which I’m sure will be equally gorgeous.

  36. Cooooooooooome to noooooorthern Caliiiiiiiifoooooooorniaaaaaaa
    That yarn is so very beautiful. I want to pet it. The pictures of the spinning make my head hurt, because I know I am so un-coordinated I would try to Navajo Ply and end up in a heap on the floor, covered in wool, poorly spun yarn and spinning wheel bits.
    As for the bribes of chocolate: Who said they were bribes? Chocolate is the best gift ever, great for all occasions. . . INCLUDING congratulatory celebrations! πŸ™‚

  37. Of COURSE we’ll help you relax at the book signings…and you’ll be able to tell who we are by the choruses of :
    “Funny llama, fuzzy Llama,
    Llama, llama duck!”
    πŸ˜‰ Have fun with it. Stop freaking out. YOU ARE WORTHY!!!!

  38. hmm. your client didn’t like my faux html tags. picture *sublimial message* and */subliminal message* around that first line. πŸ˜€

  39. Wait a minute, everyone who will be buying your book already knows that you are stark raving nuts. But we love you anyway.

  40. You realize you’re the closest thing to a celebrity in the knitting world that we’ve got, right? And Memphis is a bit too far. I’ll hold out for a closer city – I’m telepathically sending the word “OHIO” over and over to your publisher folks (although I’d settle for Kentucky or Indiana). And great info on Navajo plying – just when I’m trying to learn. Perfect timing!

  41. I think you should definitely do a book tour, but it could become a pilgrimage for both worthy and unworthy knitters everywhere. They could bring their knitting, both perfect and imperfect, for The Great One to bless. The TSF mittens could travel in a climate-controlled glass case and could be put on display for us to leave candles and offerings of love, whilst incense burns in the background . . . .
    I can see it now, busloads of knitters holding their unfinished socks (on wooden dpns, of course) over their heads, chanting, “bless me, oh Great One, bless me!”
    And–if we’re lucky–someone’s two left-handed mittens will miraculously turn into–A PERFECT PAIR! What a glorious day that would be!!!
    (Too much? Oh, well, I hope you’ll come to OKC . . . we’ll buy you a drink!)

  42. I keep running back to Amazon dot com to see if the book has shipped yet…I guess they’re just not as anxious as we all are to have the bookbookbook ship! And even before the book is here…the second one is at the publisher? And you have time to spin and knit and go to guild meetings and have a life…? (Such as it is…hoping for peace and calm and joy for you.)
    Awaiting the Amazon “We’ve shipped!” email with bated breath….

  43. ummm … how are you taking those pictures? You MUST have three hands (as I’ve suspected all along). Still waiting anxiously for the book …

  44. Memphis!? Come to Southern California
    We love you more and you’ll love our sunshine!

  45. Well, you live HERE. So how about a book signing HERE? Please? I’m sure that we could fill Romni AND Chapters AND Indigo AND Lettuce Knit with your local fans.
    And how’s about bringing a few copies to the Knitter’s Frolic in April?

  46. I think you are totally justified in keeping your First Copy of Your First Book close by. The first time I had something published, I put my First Copy in the middle of the dining table and wouldn’t let anyone touch it. It was sort of an icon, a symbol of my new identity as Published Person. My poor hubby had to wait until we bought the second copy before he was allowed to crack the spine and peek inside. The first copy was too precious to actually OPEN. πŸ™‚ (Um…I still have it. It’s still unopened.)
    So big congrats, Steph, on the book–YOUR book! As someone said above: WHOOOO and HOOOOOO! Can’t wait to read it. (And of COURSE we’ll smile at you!)

  47. Pouting.
    My local book seller won’t have the book for weeks!
    Worse yet, the likihood of you coming here is so small that there’s no way I can watch you sign my book.
    thus … pouting.
    Chicago…. could you please go to Chicago the first weekend in May? pretty please??? with chocolate on top??? I’ll be there then, and it’s SO easy to get DH to go to a bookstore….
    Helen, whose computer is sick, so she can’t upload pictures and has come to feel that pictureless blogging is just… wrong

  48. You have to come to Vancouver. It would be very unCanadian of you not to. Come visit the lefty — politically and geographically — side of Canada!

  49. Everyone who goes to your book signing is going because they already enjoy your work and can really relate to the craziness. Just have fun!
    Let your publisher know that whatever size crowd they want to see in Portland, OR we’ll have it there (if not at Powells then maybe at one of the big yarn stores). Maybe we can arrange a yarn riot where we all scream and throw skeins of yarn at you.
    At least you are short with your big hair. I’m six foot tall and my big hair is red so people see it for miles around!

  50. well, *MY* copy is on its way! Also, DC is practically on the way from Memphis to NYC, so I do hope you will stop by… I would not only smile atcha, but I would even wear my rhinebeck vest so something would LOOK familiar in the crowd as well. πŸ˜€
    Big huge congrats, Steph…

  51. Come to Montreal!! It’s so close and you’ll meet us hip McGill knitters! Well I’d be there at least. But still. You should come.

  52. Re: ye olde book tour – it’s warm in Jacksonville, FL & people equally as loopy as you are ready to make you feel very welcome.

  53. Whew! Nice to know I’m not the only one who finds that words look spelled wrong if written too often. It’s an especially annoying thing to have happen on small words (I remember it happening with the word big once).

  54. Isn’t it funny how so many of your harloteers are willing to go wherever you will be? I am jealous of those in and near Memphis and New York. Maybe you should do a Forrest Gump-style tour – picking up knitters along the way like a pied piper; I can see it now…
    Lovely yarn. The idea you have sounds beautiful. And speaking of beautiful, when is the MSF mittens announcement to be?

  55. The wilder your hair is the more we’ll like you here in New York!
    I cannot speculate on Memphis but am hoping you will be in NYC on a weekend as we may have trhe wildest hair in captivity (you’re not the only one who has to guard against looking like a country singer) but we work like the possessed things we are.
    Best of luck with the new book which I fully intend to buy.

  56. I just watched that Navajo plying video the other day, and it is quite impressive to see done! I don’t know if I’ll ever be a spinner, but if I’m ever brave enough to take it up, I can’t wait to learn that technique.
    So… does someone having your book on their Amazon wishlist count as it really existing? Because I have it on mine. When I buy it, it will probably not be from Amazon. But putting things on my Amazon wishlist gives me a little bit of a thrill, when I don’t have the money to buy them or the time to read them. πŸ™‚

  57. I second the request to come to MontrοΏ½al…and I’m not even a hip McGill knitter (damn. who forgot to tell me I’m nearly 38. somebody’s going to pay for this…). But I am also five foot nuthin (that’s 1m52 in MontrοΏ½al and it’s one of two measurements I know how to switch into metric. I ain’t tellin’ about the other one) so I can look you right in the eye when I smile at you, which of course I will do. Simply said, you rock, Steph. πŸ™‚

  58. For Chocolate in Memphis, try Dinstuhl’s. And I second Stacy’s comment on the “not very exciting” factor in Memphis. Congratulations!

  59. What are you going to wear???
    Memphis? MEMPHIS? Didn’t you mean Minneapolis? Yarn store ~#20 opened on Friday, it’s really great, you should come see it.
    Love the yarn!

  60. How very exciting! Congratulations on your bookbookbookbook! Can’t wait to get mine.

  61. What? No one’s mentioned Seattle yet? You’ve got to come out here! πŸ™‚ I’m actually south of Seattle, but I will brave the Big City to see you.

  62. any chance of coming out east to Cape Breton Steph? Or even halifax? There’s indigo’s chapters and such there, though I don’t know about yarn stores… Don’t be nervous about meeting “your public”. Just pretend you’re Margaret Atwood! πŸ˜€

  63. You can count on at least SOME of the Seattle crowd to smile nicely at you and prop you up when you faint…

  64. wow the spinning is awesome! I have yet to try it, but you make me wanna get moving!
    Now as to the book ….. I say MASSACHUSETTS is just a must! I can’t wait to get it, and I think that the copy you are carrying around would be bubble wrapped were it me πŸ˜‰
    So many congratulations!

  65. I ABSOLUTELY want a signed copy! It will be my first signed knitting book and I’m SO excited (for you and for myself). Ordering your book was just the motivation I needed to place my first Amazon order. Congratulations!

  66. I ABSOLUTELY want a signed copy! It will be my first signed knitting book and I’m SO excited (for you and for myself). Ordering your book was just the motivation I needed to place my first Amazon order. Congratulations!

  67. If you come anywhere near Charlotte, NC I will bring you chocolate AND take you out to lunch. I preordered your book from Amazon.com as I’m no where near a local yarn shop but they haven’t sent it yet. Wait, wait, wait. I am so happy for you! I’ll drive to Greensboro too and will really try for Raleigh if that is the closest you can come. You will have a ball. Congratulations!

  68. I’m one of the many that pre-orderded. I’m really looking forward to it. Right up there with Gene Wilder’s new memoir:)

  69. You have this awesome book, and you spun some awesome yarn so I’m daring to ask you a spinning question…
    I have a spindle without a hook. Just a grove on top. A notch, if you will. Do you happen to know of a website somewhere (or a blog or something) that has good pictures of how to *start* spinning on such an item? All the “basic spinning” things I see are for people with hooks…’cept I don’t have a hook!
    Also this book thing is hella cool.

  70. You need to come to Boston. But I could probably get to NY… if I took a vacation day and drove all day. Will there be a prize for the person who travels the farthest?

  71. I tried Borders yesterday afternoon. They didn’t have it yet. This is a patience exercise…

  72. Congrats on your book. If you read this among your thousands of other comments I would like to ask if I can start a chapter of Knitters without Borders in Australia. I am a regular donor, and would like to do a bit more if possible. How could I go about this?

  73. Hey, why does Amazon have your book not coming out until May 15th or 17th or something like that (Yes, I pre-ordered – that’s how excited I am about this)and your “book tour” starts in April? Do you mean to say I could go to NYC and get the book early AND get to meet you AND have my book signed too?
    Many, many congrats on your book.

  74. Stephanie: the readers would be coming to see you the knitter, the person they can relate to. Not an author who probably never picked up a pair of needles in her life. What a huge compliment to you! Enjoy!

  75. Steph! Bask in it, roll around in it, ENJOY it! You deserve it all, girl.
    *happy dance, happy dance* You’re coming to NY!!! WHooooHOoooooOOOooooo! I will be there…and I will be smiling!

  76. Congrats on the book! I just got an email that you are coming to Boston and are going to be at Circles – YAY!

  77. How about instead of mailing the book to you to get signed, I mail a book plate instead? Easier all around. Maybe I’ll even get some appropriately yarny bookplates!

  78. You are not masquerading as an author. Just read your own blog if you need to prove it to yourself!
    I hope you make it to Berkeley, CA (you should make them put us on your tour list). Will be looking for your book and have asked the woman who owns the LYS to stock it.

  79. I just had a quick suggestion about some helpful tips about Navajo plying, which I do a lot of. I love the yarn that comes from this plying technique. Your yarn is gorgeous, so you may not need these suggestions. The problem I always have with this technique are the bumps (where the loop ends and the next starts) and how to make them smaller and not gap, so I wrote about it here: http://home.earthlink.net/~anrfiber/2004_06_01_archive.html.

  80. I’ll add my bid for the San Francisco Bay Area, and I’ll include lending you my mom if it gets overwhelming and you feel the need to run screaming out the door. Mom’s really neat, knits, reads your blog, and is delightful in a quiet way. [I take after Dad.]
    N-plying. Your yarn is lovely. Are you pleased with the length of span you are getting for your loops? (Mine are usually 24-30″ unless it’s the end of a color section and I don’t want barber pole overlap.) Typically, the kate is positioned level with the orifice and your hands work in that plane, keeping the yarn aligned with the shaft of the bobbin so there’s a clean flow of twist, not a bend at the orifice. In your photo you’ve got the clean flow thing between your hands and the bobbin, but if you wanted a longer span you’d have to sit at an angle to the wheel. The kate is also usually placed farther from the wheel (6 feet or so?) to allow the twist in the singles to travel a bit and even out while you’re working your loops. Did that make sense? Frankly, I can see the appeal of the high degree of control of your method.

  81. So excited to read that you will be in NYC! I will be amongst those smiling at you from the audience. And if you want a list of yarn stores to visit while you’re here, just holler!

  82. I’m so excited that you’re coming to NYC on a date I can actually manage. Would it be too weird if I asked you to sign it then? πŸ™‚ Congratulations on your book–I can’t wait to read it.

  83. no offense to all your american blog readers and fans but the harlot is CANADIAN. What about tour dates in CANADA, to be specific EASTERN CANADA, preferably Halifax????? Yes I know i have mentioned this before:)

  84. You should push for a stop or two in the Twin Cities metropolitan area (Minnesota, US) – we have over 25 yarn stores now, including the newest “Yarn Cafe” (coffee, desserts, wine, beer, bread, fine cheese, comfy chairs, a fireplace, and an amazing selection of yarn….).
    For your gorgeous sock yarn, I’m picturing something like one of these, with black:
    I think the “Ribble Cuff,” “Mahjongg,” and “Pyramid Power” are particularly nice. πŸ™‚

  85. I think your idea for getting a signed copy is fabulous. You are swell to be so willing to turn all those books around and put them back into the mail slot. I imagine you will be swamped with knitters wanting their signed copy.
    I once bought a signed book from Harper Lee, author of To Kill a Mockingbird. You know, she doesn’t do tours or interviews or anything, but she would go (and maybe still does go) to a bookstore in her hometown of Monroeville and sit in the backroom, signing her little heart out. A person could then just call the bookstore and purchase the book (keeping the profits all in the family, so to speak, by benefitting a local vendor) which said bookstore would then ship to the reader. I bought three copies that way. She didn’t charge any extra for the signing, but signed copies were showing up on E-Bay for a while, selling for hundreds, till she put a stop to that! Anyway, that’s something you might mull over. Can’t wait to read it!

  86. OH WAIT!!!!! Memphis on April 25th, NYC on the 28th – are you going to hang around the east coast long enough to go to Maryland Sheep and Wool on May 7-8?????

  87. Be warned unless the book tour is going to hit all of Canada and the states (all 50 of them!) you are going to have a mail carrier that hates you for having to lug all those books to your house and your family is going to be up to their eyeballs in copies of bookbookbookbook waiting for you to sign. Maybe you will need bribes of chocolate, coffee and yarn just to keep your strength up?
    In appreciation for my donations Doctors Without Borders sent me some very nice address labels. You will see it on my book when I send it for an autograph!

  88. Congrats on the bookbookbook!
    I went to the Coles at Fairway Mall. They don’t have it in yet. And they only have 3! on order.
    Makes me want to go downtown and check out the LYS and see if I’d have any better luck.

  89. I just took a class on navajo plying last week. Once suggestion she made was to use a much larger whorl than you spun with, e.g. if you spun on a 9:1 ratio, then navajo ply on about a 4.5:1 ratio. This slows it down so you can still treadle at what seems like a normal pace. Also, to hold the loop down at your side below the level of the orifice, to try to get a sharp angle at the join which helps to minimize the size of the bump (easier to do than to describe). Anyway I went from making a pig’s breakfast of it to something a little creditable!

  90. Excellent — NYC! I’m clearing my calendar for April 28! I’ll be there, smiling, knitting, and wondering where the party is after the book reading/signing. πŸ˜‰
    PS – Yarn is beautiful.. maybe Petticoat Socks in Weekend Knitting (Falik)?

  91. Memphis? Seriously? Bitchin! What part? For how long? And for God’s sake woman why would you wanna come to Memphis?!?

  92. If you come to Michigan, I will be in line, with your book in hand. If the writing is anything like what you write here, it will be wonderful. If there are pictures of your knitting, that will be wonderful too. But best of all, I think I may be taller than you!

  93. Stephanie, I’d only read snippets of your blog, forwarded to my by my dear Rosebyany. (Pause with eyes ashamedly downcast for scornful noises from the readers….) Loved them–laughed and felt good about life in an Elton John “Circle of Life” kind of way–but didn’t take the time to come visit you here and gain an appreciation for all you do.
    And in the middle of all of this, you took the time to come visit and comment on my teensy little upstart blog!
    There’s a special place in heaven for people like you. But I’ll let you describe it–you’re better at the visionary narratives than I am. : )

  94. Mazel tov on the book! My favorite bookstore assures me your book would be here in a week; my copy is reserved and I await it with joyful anticipation. And one more thing, they have “several people on the list for it” Now, that has got to feel good.

  95. Thankies for the mini tute on navajo plying. I also discovered that a general problem I was having with plying was that my Joy might need another hook on the opposite side so I can put the brake the other way around (peg on left and spring/hook on right as opposed to peg on right and spring/hook on left). It was so hard for me to smoothly treadle (treadletreadletreadle…yeah, I know what you mean, lol) in the opposite direction and apparently flipping that brake will fix that. We shall see….

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