Silver Threads

a knitting blog with occasional side trips

A knitter or crocheter for all seasons?

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Woo-hoo! Halfway point of the blog week!

Day Four: 26 April. A Knitter or Crocheter For All Seasons?

As spring is in the air in the northern hemisphere and those in the southern hemisphere start setting their sights for the arrival of winter, a lot of crocheters and knitters find that their crafting changes along with their wardrobe. Have a look through your finished projects and explain the seasonality of your craft to your readers. Do you make warm woollens the whole year through in preparation for the colder months, or do you live somewhere that never feels the chill and so invest your time in beautiful homewares and delicate lace items? How does your local seasonal weather affect your craft?

There are all sorts of ways knitters and crocheters express seasonality. One friend of mine is literally seasonal about her knitting: come summer, she stops knitting. But given that most of us are more addicted to engaged with our crafts, stopping for a season is usually not possible an appealing option. Many people get around this by matching their works-in-progress to the seasons. They work on large projects like sweaters and afghans during the winter months and smaller projects such as socks during the summer.

My knitting and crochet practice isn’t all that seasonal. I can’t tell how long it’s going to take me to finish a particular project, so there’s no point in my trying to time the start of a project so that it’s ready by the season I’d use it in. I like to work on projects when the spirit moves me, and the spirit has been known to move me towards knitting bulky pullovers just as spring is turning into summer. That isn’t as much of a problem as it sounds like. Many buildings are operated by people who are enthusiastic in their use of air conditioning. I, in turn, get cold easily. So in the height of summer, I may be happily knitting along on that hypothetical bulky pullover, staying warm by spreading it over my legs as I work.

Obviously, where you live is likely to affect your choice of what you knit or crochet. I grew up in Missouri, a state far enough north to have definite seasons, but with comparatively gentle winters. I recall only making three sweaters in the years before I left home for college simply because it never got cold enough to justify wearing them. I got pretty good at making vests, though. (Okay, I also liked that when you make a vest, you don’t have to worry about sleeve length.) Minnesota, further north, has both bitterly cold winters and steamy hot summers. Here I’ve been able to make heavy sweaters that would never have seen the light of day in Missouri as well as summer sweaters that keep me both well-covered and well-ventilated. Indeed, Minnesota is such the knitter’s/crocheter’s paradise that anytime I consider moving to another state, I take its climate—that is, the “knitability/crochetability” of its climate—into consideration…and so far, many other states haven’t passed that test. Many people don’t move up here because of the winters; I may never get around to leaving because of them!

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12 thoughts on “A knitter or crocheter for all seasons?

  1. Only a crafter would worry about moving away to somewhere that wasn’t cold enough!

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    • I’d also be reluctant to leave the yarn stores. I heard once that the Twin Cities have the highest number of yarn stores per capita in the United States. I mean, maybe I could get used to just knitting cotton or making all my sweaters in fingering-weight wool, but could I get used to not having a yarn store just up the street from me? (Yes, I’m spoiled.) 😀

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  2. Ah. I am knitter in the South who loves wool. I need to visit Minnesota one day.

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  3. I get cold easily too, but working on a bulky sweater in summertime is too much even for me! 🙂

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    • If I could just convince myself that I liked knitting socks, I could do that all summer and leave the bulky sweaters until fall. The reasonableness of this idea still hasn’t persuaded me, though, so sweaters it is. Luckily, many coffee shops around here really love their air conditioning!

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  4. I feel the same about our climate: perfect for a knitter.

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  5. Minnesota yarn crawls are the BEST
    better than Chicago even

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    • I still haven’t gotten around to doing the local Shop Hop. It’s something like 14 stores in 2 days, and I’m afraid I’d just go numb after a while. But I like the idea that I could go to 14 stores in 2 days if I wanted to.

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  6. I’m in Minnesota too. An acquaintance retired from my company a few years ago, and announced that she’d be moving to Texas with her husband. She knew I was a knitter, and in fact had been telling me about her recent learn-to-knit adventures. When she saw me at her retirement party she cried “what can I knit in Texas?” I told her to seek out the cotton, silk and bamboo yarns, and learn to knit lace. Truth to tell, I don’t know if even that’s “cool” enough for Texas; I’ve never been there.

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