I don’t know about you, but around these parts in southern Ontario we are now reaching that time of the summer when temperatures reach approximately a billion and eleven degrees outside. (Approximately). It happens every July and we always like to hope that maybe this year will be the year it doesn’t happen (there was that time a couple of years ago when it didn’t happen and everyone complained about how cold it was. I loved it), but then the first 30C+ day hits. And then the first week of nothing but 30C+ days. And then just when we’re getting used to that, the weather amps it up and decides that 40C+ days will be in the offing, and where’s the fun in a mild 30% humidity index when 80% would be so much more tortuous?
So basically all you can hope to do is cling to cold beverages and air conditioning if you’ve got it, while slowly going a little bit batty wondering if you’re never going to get to wear socks or things with sleeves ever again. Last week I finished a project and as a palette cleanser, I cast on myself a hat (my Union Station beret pattern, almost done and waiting to be blocked and flattened into beret form, in Knit Picks Wool of the Andes worsted in Amethyst Heather), and something occurred to me.
Guys, July really is knitter’s time. No really, hear me out.
It’s stealth knitter’s time because nobody would expect you to be thinking about knitting right now. Any sensible person would be clutching a margarita on a shaded porch, not holding something made of wool and motion, surely? But even if you’re not feeling the pull towards the needles, the first thing you’ve got to consider about July is that, if your yarn stores are like mine, July is prime time for sales. It’s often when yarn stores make the transition from spring to fall inventory and have to make room for things, and don’t you want to help out your local yarn shop by giving them less to count? Of course you do. I can think of three Toronto stores off of the top of my head that like to plan sales for early July (or the whole month), and man, this is your time to shine. All those sweaters you were thinking about knitting last winter or spring but didn’t get the time for before you transitioned over to socks and lace? Stock up now. The yarn might well be on sale, and maybe even in the colour you couldn’t find last time you looked.
The other thing about being a knitter in the summer (and this can go hand in hand with the first thing, if you play your cards right and happen upon the right bargains), is that almost nobody is thinking about knitting winter projects. In the heat of July, there is really very little likelihood that there will be a run on the bulky alpaca or the Malabrigo chunky. All that bulky thick-and-thin stuff that you can whip off a gift cowl with in one or two skeins? Get it now. You could score a sweater’s worth or a few scarves’ worth of wintry wooly stuff right now pretty easily, then pull it out in October with a really smug expression when everybody else is trying to find it in the same colour that you already had stashed because you, the stealth summer knitter, were planning ahead.
While we’re thinking ahead to winter knitting projects, (and maybe taking a moment to imagine what it feels like to be standing in a snowbank – go ahead, I’ll wait, it’s highly recommendable) think back to last winter and the kinds of things you were furiously knitting around December. Were there things you were rapidly knocking off as gifts and needed more yarn for? Were you suddenly making hats for everyone in your family and found yourself short of 16″ circular needles for hats? I suddenly stopped and remembered that last winter when I was knitting hats, I was having the damndest time finding 16″ circulars in 4.5mm or 5.0mm, because everyone knits hats in December. You know when people are less likely to be buying up all those needles? July. My December self is going to thank me.
Stay cool and stealthy, knitting friends!