I’d have to say fingering weight projects, making scarves and shawls. They’re the right size to fit in a small project bag and they’re not heavy or warm. You do have to make sure they are washable, because poolside or beach knitting always involves sunscreen.
Introducing our newest Yarnista, Sarah:
I’m a huge fan of socks! While they’re great to knit any time of the year, I find that most of my socks get done in the summer.
They’re small, portable and a great chance to try different patterns (and colors!). They’re also great for travel knitting since they easily fit in any bag and can be put down at the drop of a hat. And once the weather gets cooler, your feet will be toasty with your collection of brand new socks!
I’m firmly in the camp that you should make whatever inspires you. The practicalities of knitting socks or other small accessories are legit, but if you’re not excited to crank out a half dozen hats, then don’t force it. Some of my favorite projects from the last few summers have been a fingering weight sweater for my mother and a queen-sized afghan that I made while dealing with a horrible break up (real talk: I do not have the face for bangs). It’s definitely easier to lose enthusiasm for knitting in the summer than the colder months, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t knit whatever your heart desires. Besides, make a sweater now and you can smile at everyone frantically trying to whip one up when the weather turns. I also think summer is a great time to push yourself creatively. Maybe it’s a new skill (summer 2015: brioche or bust!) or an out there color palette (my vote is always fresh/bright with a neutral) or just a different design aesthetic. Whatever it is, if you’re feeling a little meh, do something different. And if you don’t love the end result, then hey, look at you getting ahead with the gift knitting!
Over the summer I just try to keep on track with projects. I find that if I let myself put things down for too long that they end up in the ever-growing pile of UFOs that sort of sit in hibernation. Since one of my 2015 knitting goals is to reduce UFOs (frog it or finish it!), I’ve been trying to stick to the mantra of “a row a day gets a project done.” That being said, I have a really hard time being motivated to pick up my knitting when I feel like I’ve lost my mojo. I am trying to be better about only knitting things I am actually enjoying. Recently, for example, I gave up on a baby blanket and cast on a completely different blanket pattern because I was just not loving the knit. And, when I’m really in a slump, I tend to want to buy yarn for a new pattern for something I am really excited about knitting. This is almost always something for myself, rather than a gift or “to-do” item. This past weekend I cast on the Keith Moon sweater by Kate Davies in Shelter because I just need a knitting win and the pattern and yarn make me happy. After that I’ll get back on track with the rest of my knitting, but for now I’ll probably knit this exclusively until completion.