Friday, October 25, 2013

Tuesday's Tin of the Week

I was at Basel Running Chica’s home a few weeks ago … Doing what else? Drinking! Surprise, Surprise!  When she said, “I have a tin for you … I think?”  I said, “Well let’s see it.”  She asked if this qualified because it's ceramic*.  I said absolutely as it’s small and holds things. A tin doesn’t have to be tin.  It just has to hold stuff that you don’t want loose. This is sitting on my table in my sewing room right now.  It contains my knitting pins, my darning needles and a small set of scissors. 

Thanks Basel Running Chica,
The Martini Knitter 

*Anything can be a tin for Tin of the Week.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Introducing Vesper

I posted early that I have been a knitting machine.  Maybe that’s not all true.  We have a new member to our home, Vesper.  Her mother is from Sardinia living in France and obviously she got “wooed” by a French male cat.

Vesper has 2 speeds: “off” and “fast.”  In some ways it’s like having an 18-month-old toddler back in our home.  She. Is. Into. Everything.  From attacking our feet to my working yarn and now onto my bamboo knitting needles. She likes chasing yarn labels around the floor too.

Vesper managed to get onto my sewing table and like any toddler with a new reason for living her expression was this:  “Look mommy! I climbed up to the sewing table all by myself.”

I know that I am going to shock some people with this – but we did not name her after the drink.  She’s drinking water here.  She only drinks from a glass not a bowl and no, I am going to give her a martini glass!  We named her after Vesper in the James Bond movie, Casino Royale. We wanted to name her after a James Bond chick that had gumption. 

Welcome to your new home, Vesper!
The Martini Knitter

Friday, October 18, 2013

I Don't Do Knitting Under Pressure

I have been a knitting machine these past few weeks hence the reason for the “radio silence” - as I call it - on the postings. 

I have learned that I am not a very good knitter when it comes to knitting under pressure.  So I guess that this is a good lesson to learn now instead of during “crunch time” - December 24th. 

The Shaker had a business trip to the US at the beginning of the month and therefore got to circle through North Carolina to see Gin.  I sent her a little care package of Swiss chocolate (dark chocolate with almonds and a bar of dark chocolate Florentine) from Merkur and her wool skirt that she asked for last year right at the start of spring.  This is what she said to me when she got it, “Hey you finished it!”  Like I wasn’t going to finish it … it was started at last spring. So I ask: who’s going to wear a wool skirt in springtime???

I took pic right before putting it into
The Shaker's luggage.  Now waiting for a proper photo

But I also made Gin a pair of Halloween socks that didn’t make it into the care-package as I screwed up on the heel.  But like anything in my knitting, it was truly a blessing because once the heel was done right, I did a picot edge bind-off around the cuff that was not in the original plan.  I bought the line online from Etsy from ToHoYarn and it was a wonderful yarn to knit with – so soft.  Gin’s response to receiving her Halloween socks: “Cool socks, mom! Thanks!”

I just love love love these socks!

Then came Mr. Tanqueray’s birthday … I have been sitting on this pattern –Sloe Gin Socks - in my shopping cart on Ravelry waiting for the right time to buy and knit these socks.  I love the pattern because it’s just has this nice simple cable on the back of the leg and cable ribbing along the foot that gives it a nice knit for the knitter and a “manly look” for the guy.  Plus, I wanted to make these socks especially for Mr. Tanqueray because I had sloe gin with him for the first time ever, last year and I swear, this guy really knows his gin products.

So I have been waiting to hear when Mr. Tanqueray’s birthday was coming up and sure enough, I was with Mrs. Tanqueray and Canadian Yoga Girl when his birthday was mentioned.  When Canadian Yoga Girl and I were alone, I said, “I have this sock pattern that I totally want to make for Mr. Tanqueray as it’s call Sloe Gin; but I know that there is no way I can complete both socks in a week.”  Canadian Yoga Girl’s response was simple, “So you make one and give it to him and give him the other one a week later.”  I took her advice and did it.

Mr. Tanqueray's homemade Sloe Gin and
the first sock - work in progress

So here’s where the knitting “under pressure” comes in … I finished the one sock without too many troubles thanks to another Ravelry user, hollyisaac, who wrote out on her project page the mistakes that she resolved and fixed while making her own Sloe Gin socks.  But while knitting the second Sloe Gin sock, I kept screwing up on the cable knitting along the top of the foot; I just got into the rhythm of knitting and didn’t even bother to check the cable ribbing until it was 2 inches down the front before I notice the twist was going in the wrong direction.  Argh!

Now I know that Mr. and Mrs. Tanqueray are reading this right now and I can hear saying, “Oh that poor poor woman had to rip out 2 inches of knitting to fix the problem.” Um … no.  I just had to pull down the 2 stitches to the problem area, fix it and move the stitches back up to the needles again.  No biggie! But then I decided I needed to  “de-tox” from Sloe Gin for a day. But what’s driving me crazy is that I am almost done – I am one inch from the starting the toe! I just need to give Mr. Tanqueray his sock! It’s like this: one sock is in the dryer and where’s the other one???

Mr. Tanqueray, Weekend Warrior Guy and
Canadian Yoga Girl

They fit! Or at least one does!

The Martini Knitter