Summer Knitting

I will say that one of the best things about my move to Washington is that we don’t get extremely hot summers here. It holds pretty steady around 60 degrees year round, give or take. This is great for me, since my broken thyroid means my internal thermostat is busted and there’s a very narrow temperature window where I’m comfortable–and this falls into it perfectly.

However, if you’re in one of those warmer climates that needs air conditioning and you like to knit or crochet, then you’re probably considering putting your craft projects on hold this time of year.

Fear not, gentle knitter, I have some ideas that might help you enjoy your yarn until the leaves start to turn.

  1. Small projects
    Stick to things that can fit in a sock-sized project bag, unless you’re sitting in the air conditioning. Projects like hats, headbands, plush toys, socks, fingerless gloves, cowls, hats, washcloths, etc are perfect for hot weather. Check out my shop tab for several small accessories and a hanging kitchen towel tutorial.

2. Vegetable fibers
I know, this one gets trotted out every summer. “Knit with cotton!” they say, and so you reluctantly search the yarn aisle at Joanns or Walmart, staring at that thick ball of Lily Sugar’n’Cream, wondering how your life came to this.
If that is your idea of cotton yarn, then fear not. I have a whole list of great non-wool yarns here. What you need to look for are cotton, linen, or bamboo blends. If you’re vegan, then an acrylic or other synthetic blend is perfectly acceptable. If not, you can find blends with animal fibers that will be cooler and lighter, but maintain the elasticity of wool. Most of the yarns on that list are even budget friendly, and most can easily be ordered online.

3. Change how you knit.
I can already see that you are baffled, but working with cotton and linen means sacrificing some of the elasticity of animal fibers. Try changing the stitches and patterns you use to make these projects work better for the fibers you’re using. And don’t be afraid of adding sneaky sewing hacks, like a small elastic band, or a hidden snap to make it easier to adjust sizes on finished objects.

4. Freeze it
You may or may not be aware are the freezing fibers like mohair makes them easier to rip back, since it closes the scales on the individual hairs. Try sticking that new ball of wool in the freezer for an hour, and see if that makes it more pleasurable on your hands. Just don’t put any metal needles in the freezer!

Like what you see? Check out What’s in my Knitting Bag?