Sunday, June 21, 2009

Then Refresh His Heart

A few years ago, the men's chorus I sing with performed Brahms' Alto Rhapsody with Rose Taylor. It was a totally enjoyable experience, my first with singing Romantic music like this. Kind of hard to describe -- bleak, yet uplifting at the same time. I only remember snatches of the German lyrics, but as I've been working on this Herz & Baum vest, the phrase so erquicke sein Herz has been going through my mind -- "then refresh his heart."

And I suppose I have been a bit refreshed. This vest languished for a short while, but I got back up to speed recently and today I finished the last of the 24 neck decreases which take place every third round. I have only a few more rows to go until I've got the sleeve holes knit to the requisite length. Even then, I might add a bit more. Most of my height manifests itself in my torso, so I want to make sure this is long enough.

It's clear from the instructions that I am to bind off once I get to the top and then sew the shoulder seams after cutting the steeks. But I'm wondering if it would be possible to bind off just the stitches along the back of the neck during the last round, and then use a 3-needle bindoff on the live stitches between the back and front. Would that work? Which would provide a firmer shoulder seam -- 3-needle bind off or sewing up after a regular bindoff? Right now I'm leaning toward seaming, but it's not going to be easy with all these cables...

On an unrelated note, I somtimes get asked about the title of my blog. It comes from the lyrics in the number Some People from what is arguably the best Broadway musical ever, Gypsy. Just a relevant sample:
Some people can get a thrill
knitting sweaters and sitting still.
That's okay for some people
who don't know they're alive.
Despite the fact that these lyrics knock knitting, this really is a great musical. The original movie version with Rosalind Russel is bland. The made-for-TV version with Bette Midler is better. But nothing beats the original Broadway production with Ethel Merman. Gypsy is 50 this year, and they've just released an anniversary version of the original cast album. If you've never seen this musical, do so. And if I haven't convinced you, listen to this review that aired on Fresh Air a few weeks ago.


  1. Yes - 3 needle BOs are always strong and foolproof! Do it, do it, do it.

    And no - I love Rosiland Russel so her version is the best.


  2. I think a 3 needle BO would be easier - and the vest is gorgeous - really!

    I've never seen Gypsy - but I will have to find it and watch - love musicals!