I’ve heard many people note that fall snuck up on them this year. I’m not sure whether the weather conditions in Maine were peculiar this year, or whether we just tend to notice anew every year how short our summer season is. Despite being the precursor to an inevitably long, dark and cold winter, fall is probably the most popular season in Maine. We jokingly call the tourists who pour into Maine (at the pace of molasses) “leaf peepers”, because they come from far and wide simply to appreciate the beautiful colors of our fall foliage. In the fall, I always feel a surge of gratitude that I get to live in such a beautiful place all year. There are so many reasons to embrace the fall.
We ordered a few kits for Mrs. Knitter’s beautiful October Traditions Tam this month. Who wouldn’t want to wear this glorious hat in the fall? And if you think you can’t knit color work like this, I promise it’s easier than you think!
I think most businesses in Maine see a stark shift of business between the summer-fall months, and the winter-spring months. For many businesses with tourist appeal, it’s either on-season or off-season, with little in-between. Summer is on and winter is off. It’s different here though. Interestingly, knitting season happens to fall mostly during the off-months.
While I knit every single day year-round, I appreciate that some people consider knitting a fall and winter hobby. I know there are people out there who stepped outside some time this month, and realized that it’s time to pull their basket of knitting supplies out of the closet, and pick up where they left off last spring. What a delightful day that must be!
So today, I’m excited about the eternal cycle of the seasons, and eager to find out what this fall has in store for myself and for the knitters in my life. I can’t wait to meet the knitters who are just passing through admiring the fall colors, and to re-meet the knitters who return every fall. This fall, I’m hard at work on designing objects and writing patterns for our 12 Weeks of Christmas knit-along (and now also crochet-along!) series. What are you knitting this fall? I’d love to see your latest obsession, masterpiece, or means to pass the time, whatever knitting is to you.
My friends, this is a blog post about sweaters. Sweaters come in endless varieties, suitable for endless moods, personalities, seasons, and eras. They keep us preoccupied as knitters, and enrich our lives and those of the lucky recipients of our hand-made gifts. Completing a sweater is a major accomplishment, and wearing a hand-made sweater is cause for pride and celebration. But sweaters may also inspire quiet reflection.
It’s still warm outside in Maine, but as knitters we have to think ahead, and we have good reason to favor the cooler months. Lately I’ve been thinking of cozy sweaters in autumn hues. This season’s issue of Interweave Knits, which I’ve been gazing at daily on our front counter in the shop, is full of them. The soft neutral-toned cover is dreamy and suggestive of all the best warm and fuzzy things that I associate with knitting: soft fabrics that comfort like a hug, autumn leaves, a cup of tea, peace and contentment, time to sit and think. The photo styling reminds me that knitting is a luxury and a meditation. Wearing a cozy sweater, or better yet– knitting one, makes me feel awash with gratitude for the comforts my life affords me. It puts me at ease. It’s an opportunity to be relished. Even after awaiting the summer so eagerly, I find myself looking forward to fall. Everyone should have a cozy sweater.
What makes a sweater particularly cozy, though? There are some common themes: a little oversized rather than fitted, a somewhat heavy yarn in a soft fiber that feels good right against the skin, traditional shapes and textures with nostalgic suggestions, muted colors. But it’s up to you, of course. It might also be the stories that you knit into your work, or whatever style makes you feel good about yourself.
Above, see a few of my latest favorite autumn-themed cozy sweaters for women. Below, a few of my favorites for men and children.