Monday, December 31, 2007

It's Showtime!

Some of the best presents I gave or recieved this year were going to see shows with friends and family.

JF gave me tickets to see The Nutcracker at Lincoln Center. It's the original production by the New York City Ballet. I was thrilled as I was in a local production when I used to do ballet as a kid. I played one of the mice. I remembered the thrill of traveling to different locations to perform and feeling a little sad when the Mouse King was done in by the Nutcracker.

The costumes and special effects in this version were truly magnificent. They had a Christmas tree that grew to be as tall as the stage and at the end Clara and her prince appear to fly off the stage in a sled pulled by reindeer. Afterwards we kept noticing how much the music from The Nutcracker is used in commercials and had fun trying to figure out which song was being used to sell what product.

If you ever need a place to eat before a show at Lincoln Center check out the restaurant Compass. It's on the UWS on 70th St between Amsterdam and West End Ave. They have a prix fixe dinner and the food, decor, and service were outstanding. Would definately go back again.

My sister and I took our mom to see Spelling Bee on Broadway. It was a really cute show. Audience members can register before the show starts to be contestants. One of my sister's friends who had gotten picked told her what questions they would ask. All her practicing paid off as they actually chose to be in it! She let me know right before the show started but it was a big shock to my mom. My sister was on stage for probably about 15 minutes. She spelled her first word 'jihad' right but left with a complimentary juice box when they asked her to spell 'kumus.' I think they said it's curdled camel's milk. Apparently it's a delicacy in the Middle East-bleh!

My Citysearch skills were successful again in picking out the restaurant Eatery on 9th Ave and 53rd St. We had a very yummy brunch there. I had the sweet potato pancakes with mango guacomole. My only complaint was the noise level but I guess it comes with the territory when you pick a popular place to eat at.

And for the knitting related content of this post here's a gingerbread man I made:

At the Upper East Side Knitters holiday party we all made our own versions. Here's a pic of them all playing in the 'snow.'

Happy New Year's!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Baby's First Pacifier Clip

I wanted to knit something for my niece, Ainsley's, first Hanukah. At the book signing for Itty Bitty Nursery at Knitty City in November the author, Susan B. Anderson, had displayed some adorable looking pacifier clips. Then I remembered that in the goodie bag from Stitch 'n Pitch
back in August a free pattern for said pacifier clip had been included in a promotional brochure from the book! It's also available free from the author's blog here.

Truthfully, I had never heard of a pacifier clip before. It's basically a device that you attach to the pacifier on one side and clip onto the child's clothing on the other side. That way when the child inevitably opens their mouth the pacifier just hangs down rather than falling on the ground and getting dirty. To make the project you need to buy the clips at Target or anywhere that sells baby supplies and cut out the ribbon that comes with it. Then you knit your own flower and sew it onto the clip. If you get the book Itty Bitty Nursery she has also patterns for an elephant and a frog that are really cute.

I'm happy with the way it turned out. I used Paton's Cotton Grace in Rose, Ginger, and Blush. I found the directions were a bit vague with how to assemble all the pieces so I had to kind of make it up as I went. I also found it necessary to sew the petals down onto each other to avoid their tendency to otherwise flop all over the place.

If you're making one of these remember to pick up a matching pacifier so it makes a complete gift when you present it. Also, you might want to hint around to see if the mother has an anti-pacifier philosophy. Otherwise your beautiful creation may just sit in a drawer rather than being used and enjoyed!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

"Please, Sir, I'd Like Some More"

Dia De Los Muertos Stitch Markers

Pretty in Purple Swarovski Crystal Stitch Markers

If you check out my Etsy Shop Code Purl I promise to show you some pics of actual knitting in the next post :-)

Monday, December 17, 2007

New Shop Items

Green Globe Swaovski Stitch Markers

Blue Oasis Swarovski Stitch Markers

Check out my Etsy Store Code Purl for these and other items. I'm going to add a couple more sets this week.

Monday, December 10, 2007


Cold wintry weather signals the start of hat-knitting season. Let's give a warm welcome to the newest head covering FO's:

This fun child's hat was knit by JF for his 2 year old niece. It's modeled here by one of my Cabbage Patch Kids who was excited to put it on as she hasn't had anything new to wear in the last couple decades!

I'm having trouble finding the tag to tell you what the yarn is. All I remember is it's an Italian yarn we bought at WEBS. As you can see it's both thick and thin and also has boucle bobbles making it a bit of a challenge to work with but well worth it. I think the floppy pom-pom JF added really puts the cuteness factor over the top. It went into the mail to Texas today. Apparently there are a few days during the Texas winter when it's cold enough to be hat-worthy (and I don't mean cowboy hats!)

Next up is my purple alpaca hat I knit from yarn I purchased at Rhinebeck. (You'll have to excuse my memory as I'm not doing too well on naming yarns in this post.) It's modeled by our very own half goat, half ram puppet, the one and only Goatram.

Here's the side view. I didn't originally intend for it to have ear flaps but after it was all done and I tried it on it felt too short. It looked alright but I prefer for my winter hats to cover my ears, lobes and all. These mini-ear flaps are just big enough to get the job done without looking like a full on ski hat. At first they kept flipping up a la Pippi Longstocking braids but a little blocking fixed that. I had originally made a flower to go on it but am debating whether it will be a bit much now with the ear flaps and all. On the plus side the color of the yarn coordinates perfectly with my new glasses. It's the little things in life ;-)

Finally, here is my current intarsia piece in progress. It's version 2.0 of JF's original '48' hat he made last year. The '48' is for his favorite NASCAR driver Jimmy Johnson (who, for those who care, won the Nextel cup this past season). I've only been able to work on it at home and all the color changes are making me a bit nuts but I'm happy with the way the logo is coming out.

Here is the first version of the hat. At first glance it looks ok. However the yarn was so chunky that the '48' looks felted and somewhat obscured. Since it was knit in the round there are a million little ends on the back that make the logo very stiff and thick. Plus it's an inch or so too big and the top was finished in black and grey when JF ran out of blue yarn.

JF designed the logo both times. The plan for version 2.0 was to knit it flat until past the logo, sew a seam then finish knitting in the round. Since the intarsia part was being knit flat there would be less ends to sew in at the end. I'm knitting it this time, however, as he decided after casting on that 130 stitches across just wasn't his thing. One night I had nothing on the needles and picked it up off the coffee table and started knitting it so it became my project. I'm going to attempt to bring it out of the house so I can make some more progress on it. Wish me luck!

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Happy Hanukah!

Here's to eight days of knitting....err, I mean lights ;-)