the cruellest season

... Summer, that is.

No, wait -- let me explain!

It's a cruel couple of months coming up for knitters, in ways that you non-knitters might not realize:


  • The garden is calling! The garden is calling! And after hours of weeding and planting and mulching, sometimes the hands just can't move any more … not even to knit (gasp!).
  • For those of you lucky enough to live nearer the equator, it's just getting too stinkin' HOT to have a whole top-down sweater in your lap, and I don't care if it's made of cotton or bamboo or silk.
  • The children, however many you have roaming your house, are getting restless, and while they could just go play outside, there are the soccer and baseball games, the swimming lessons … the list goes on.
  • And finally, even if the above three don't getcha, there's the final knitter's conundrum: what do you knit to WEAR in summer?


This last is the thing that really gets me. Thanks to Madam, we have our garden well in hand this year, and we're really caught up to the point that we're planting little veggie starts and cooing over them. That's all for the garden chores so far this spring.

And one of the reasons on the list to move up to the Pacific Northwest in the first place was "Wool sweaters are not silly." (No joke -- I can show you the slip of paper my ex and I wrote this down on before we moved!) So I live in one of the few climates where I can have an entire sweater in my lap in August and actually enjoy it as a windbreak.

No little savages wandering about the place, and even the Mighty Hound prefers to keep things on the down-low as the temperatures climb, on account of the fur coat he insists upon schlepping around.

So we are left with the last: If I'm going to take up the gauntlet that The Immortal Sally Melville threw down two years ago in Ottawa, I want to Represent, dammit! I want to walk around in handknits to show the world what fun we have with yarn. I want to show off those mad skillz I've spent years (and hours in class) honing. I want to gambol around my little maritime village in cutoffs and a kickin' sweater.

But what to knit?

Most of my knitted wardrobe runs to soft, wooly long-sleeved lovelies, things that would be as at home in the Hebrides as they would in Cornwall. I love cables, colorwork, everything sweater-related, really. So when it comes to warmer-weather gear, I admit I'm a bit stymied. Add on to that the fact that my hourglass figure is really not well-suited to breezy, diaphanous things (they cling in all the wrong ways to all the wrong places), I'm left with a summer wardrobe of black and gray and white T-shirts. <Yawn.>

Okay, so I did have that Summer of Hemp a few years ago, where I knit at least four different samples for the shop out of LanaKnits Hemp 3 and Hemp 6. And there's my Hempathy "No Purling Allowed" cap-sleeve T-shirt which is a favorite in hot weather -- despite its Dr.-Seuss-ness:

But now I find myself combing the pages of Ravelry and Patternfish, and even back issues of Interweave Knits, trying to find those great little summery pieces I can knit up and run out of the house in.

What about you, gentle knitters? What do you/have you knit to wear in summer?