Too hot to handle? Knitting with wool in warm weather.

I really love to knit and so I don’t want to stop when the weather warms up, nor do I want to have a big pile of wool in my lap. But I love wool! Cotton is okay and I love those cotton/wool/silk blends by Noro but there’s no match for the lofty, soft, inviting (and very forgiving) stretchy-ness of wool.

Of course, Lombardy isn’t Texas, so the summer at it’s worst here is like an early June day in Dallas. Here you want a little something to cover your shoulders when the sun goes down even in August. So, what about wool? My husband has a summer wool suit and he says that in Italian they call summer-weight wool ‘lana fresca’. It’s lovely, it doesn’t crease and it’s light as a feather. So, that got me thinking and clicking. On a lark I googled ‘wool t-shirts’. Wow, too cool, they make them! It turns out that wool is the new fiber of choice for hikers, runners and bikers, even in the summer! There was a really funny blog here by a guy who tested a woolen t-shirt for two weeks to see if it would start to smell:

http://www.outsideonline.com/blog/outdoor-gear/two-weeks-one-wool-shirt.html

and another more straight forward review by a cyclist in Texas:

http://jimsbikeblog.wordpress.com/2011/08/18/wearing-wool-in-high-summer/

Well, I’m not planning to make any long cycling trips but as I searched I was looking for a some information that wasn’t pitching a product or an organization and I found this tidbit in: Encyclopedia of Deserts

“Wool is the best fabric choice in the desert environment. Nomadic Bedouins in the Middle East wear loose wool garments year-round…therefore, for hiking in the desert a loosely knit wool sweater is a better clothing choice than a cotton sweatshirt. ” (p. 123)

Okay, so I’m not going to go hiking in the desert wearing a new IBEX wool t-shirt…but, although the idea of knitting a t-shirt is tempting, I think I’ll start by knitting a nice lacy light weight something to throw over my shoulders. I like that word my husband taught me, ‘lana fresca’ – refreshing/fresh wool.

Now for the fun part: choosing a which pattern and which wool!

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One thought on “Too hot to handle? Knitting with wool in warm weather.

  1. I wear my wool socks in the summer as you know, but it is Texas, so I only wear cotton or linen once it starts getting warm. In fact, that is mostly what I wear anyway as it doesn’t get really cold for very long. I am making some “short” wool socks. I think they will be nice for warm weather–some nice “fresh” wool.

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