Friday, November 30, 2007

Knitting for Christmas?

Some knitters out in the blogosphere and ravelry world are spending their time prepping for all the wonderful handmade knits they intend to give their friends and family.

Unfortunately, us over here at Yarncoffee can't consume enough caffeine to stay awake and get all our "promised knits" done much less our "holiday knits". I have about 5 or 6 knits on my holiday knit list and have not completed one, not one!

So, what have I been working on?
Well there was the scarf for my brother:

Keep in mind that I started this scarf last January, after I gave him this (see link) hat for Xmas! I thought it would be nice if he had a scarf to match. But doing 6ft of a ribbed stockinette stitch can entertain for only so long so I put it down for oh, 10 months! It was well received at his family birthday celebration and I think he'll get some use out of it this winter.

Then I had the promised hat to my friend, Bridget:

I promised this hat to her last year when we were up in NY. We went to the EMS store and she found a white cable knitted hat that she loved. I told her not to spend the $40 on it then because I could make her one. Ever since then, for about 7 months now, every week or so she brings up the hat and asks where it is. So, without a doubt I had to get that finished before I could start another project! So, here it is: (so is my Christmas tree, all decorated and pretty!)

I used the Yarn Harlot's Unoriginal Hat pattern and made a few modifications. I shortened the wide cable and lengthened the skinnier cable. I also added a roll-up ribbed brim. Here's the top of it:

It turned out pretty well and I completed it in about 3 or 4 days.

But this is not a present, not really. She'll receive it next week! I still have 1 scarf, 1 market bag, 1 or 2 more hats, and one knitted bangle bracelette to knit up, and I would like to make a couple animal toys.

How, how am I suppose to get this all done when already the Christmas time invites are rolling in? "Family Holiday Gift Exchange" (1st weekend in Dec), "Come to our Ho Ho Holiday Party!" (2nd Weekend), "Wanna go to NYC and see all the decorations?" (3rd weekend inDec), and then it's Christmas!!!!!

How do you knitters out there in the blog world get it all done in time? Do you have any advice? Any secret tips to knitting while you sleep? I'm calling out to the masses for advice on getting through your December Holiday Knits!

Here's one last photo of the promised hat:
I think it looks much better on him than me!

Happy Knitting!

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Birthday Scarves and Balconies

The other day I noticed that buses and cop cars have their public transportation numbers painted on their roofs. I noticed this as I was standing on the third floor balcony of my new studio apartment in downtown Baltimore. So I asked my friend why they would print the vehicle numbers on the roofs when the pedestrians clearly aren't tall enough to read them. He supposed it was probably for traffic helicopters. I thought about this for a little while and decided that he was wrong. I informed him that I believed it was done purely for the visual pleasure of people with balconies in the city.

That's my balcony at the top center of the photo.

I'm in love with my balcony. It's very small but beautiful. The paint is chipping on the railings, that I'm pretty certain are not up to regulation for it's height (they stand about 2.5 feet tall and you could easily flip over one and *splat* on the street) but I love it's dirty, peeling, faded lemon yellow color. I love that its flooring was recently relayed even though I've found 2 rusty nails and two boards that had 4 sharp nails each poking out of it, hello tetnis. Mostly I love the view...

I can see almost all they way downtown if I look one way and all they way uptown if I look the other. I can also see the roof of the Belvedere Hotel which is one of the oldest Hotels in Baltimore, notorious for its celebrity citings, Owl Bar (a speakeasy during prohibition), and the 13th Floor (a club upstairs that claims to have to have the best view in all of Baltimore)!

I'm also loving the interior architecture of this old studio. The wall trim and window trims, the closed up fireplace and kitchen alcove. Coming from a four room apt to a two room studio (that's including the bathroom) I have learned how to maximize my small space with clever fabric draping and working with vertical space.

See that beautiful fireplace...see the candle abra on top of the red box? Oh wait that's not a red box! That is my clever disguise for my Tupperware container full of yarn! I draped red fabric over the ugly military green box and now it blends beautifully with the floor!

With all the moving (again) I've hardly had time to knit but I have managed to finish my birthday scarf, aka: Shifting Sands! I'm not thrilled with this photo but it will have to do for now.

Happy Knitting!