Don’t get me started on the notion that knitting is seasonal and that its season is not summer. That’s crazy talk. I don’t understand how a person who likes to knit could stop doing it for an entire season. As a mammal, I understand that hot temperatures and cuddly-cozy animal fibers might not be compatible. Yesterday, when New York suddenly came over all muggy, I started to really feel the alpaca content as I knit the last rows of my Tokyo Shawl. There was an unpleasant pelt-like weight to the heaping helping of shawl in my lap. But there was no reason to throw out the baby (knitting) with the alpaca’s bath water! Summer is the season of porches, iced beverages, and long air-conditioned car rides, and there is plenty of knitting to be enjoyed.
Today I’d like to remind everyone of the humble dishcloth, and what great summer knitting it is. I started thinking about dishcloths when I looked in my dishrag drawer and saw this:
All but my most recent dishcloths have holes in them. They have done their service. It is time for them to be put out to pasture in the rag bag. It is time to knit new ones.
A great thing about knitting dishrags is that you can take them anywhere. They are impervious to sand, seawater, dead hermit crabs laid upon them by children, sno-cone drippings and French’s mustard. They are dishrags: if they get dirty, you wash them. And if you like the pattern, and have more or less memorized it, it’s very pleasant to sit in a beach chair, or an adirondack chair, or even a hammock, and pull new colors of dishcloth cotton out of your bag. The rate of exchange is straightforward: one day at the lake or in the car = one dishrag for your drawer. You don’t have to count stitches or worry about keeping track of decreases or losing the pattern. It’s delightfully carefree.
Dishcloths are a solution if you’ve done the unthinkable and gotten yourself out on the Interstate without any knitting. Google up one of the big chain craft stores or a mart of some kind, run in and pick up a couple of balls of dishcloth cotton and a pair of needles, and you’re all set. If there is no pattern on the ballband, you can use this one. That’s what I do.
Behold what’s left of my once-legendary dishcloth cotton supply.
It may look like the island of misfit dishcloth cotton remnants, but just seeing this jumble on the windowsill has me putting together excellent dishcloth color combos.
I know: a dishcloth is not a sock. Socks are also terrific summer knitting, being small and portable. I encourage everyone to knit socks.
But if you’re looking for a sock alternative, try dishcloths. If you need more information and a new pattern or three, I have written a few posts about dishcloths.
Happy summer, Northern Hemisphere!