Creative Knitting Newsletter
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Whether you'll be globe-trotting, frolicking at the beach or lounging in your backyard, there's no reason to drop your knitting habit for the summer, but you may want to make some adjustments to accommodate summer venues.
Knitting in the Air
There's no doubt about it: Airline travel is fraught with the potential of changes in schedule, which could mean a simple delay or a more inconvenient flight cancellation. What better way to while away hours of downtime than with needles in hand?
Although a 13-hour layover presents a wonderful opportunity for progressing on that oversized bedspread you've been working on half your life, it may just be a little too big to comfortably tote around the airport and is also unlikely to fit under the seat in front of you. Therefore, choose small projects for air travel like socks, gloves or a scarf -- any of these can be quickly removed from, and shoved back into, your knitting bag.
Whether or not knitting needles are allowed on airplanes seems to depend on the TSA employees on duty at your port of call -- some say "yes," others say "no." To minimize the risk, choose wooden needles, and if possible, circular needles. Not only do circulars appear unthreatening, they keep your knitting close to your body and your elbows away from your seat neighbor. Also handy are scissors with blunt ends, not sharp points.
In the unlikely event that your knitting needles are confiscated, you'll be glad you packed spares in your checked luggage, so you can resume knitting when you reach your destination. Be sure to keep some string on hand to transfer your live stitches to in case you have to surrender your needles.
Sand, sun and seagulls can make knitting at the beach a challenge, but with proper preparation, you can get lots of seaside knitting done. As with travel knitting, it's best to think small, so choose things like baby items, hats, sleeveless tops or socks.
The most important thing is to keep the sand away from your yarn. Wind your yarn into a center-pull ball and place the ball into a small resealable plastic bag. Zip the bag shut, leaving only enough of the seal open for one strand of yarn to pass through. Now place the project and the bagged ball into a large resealable plastic bag for traveling. Because seagulls know that good things come in plastic bags, place the large resealable bag inside a canvas or other cloth bag out of sight when you go for a dip.
Pack needles, scissors, crochet hook, markers and whatever other tools you'll need in a separate bag or pouch. A canvas pencil case with a clear plastic front makes an ideal tool kit. And if you're knitting with double-point needles, pack one or two spares. If you get distracted and bury one in the sand, you'll be happy for the backup.
Knitting in the Hammock
Now here's where you can really get some knitting done! In the privacy of your own backyard, snuggled in a hammock under a shade tree, you can knit whatever you want. No need to keep things small when you're simply moving from the house to the yard, so go ahead and make some headway on that oversized afghan or large lacy shawl. Simply set the work to the side if the going gets too hot; then bring it back for comfort when day turns to evening. The only extra thing you may need here is insect repellent -- just be sure not to saturate your yarn!