You have a couple of options. Felted items, like slippers and bags are great. Even in warm climates (I live in the desert) there are an occaisional rainy or cool night where slippers are nice.
Or, you could go with (for your mom) a sweater that is a lightweight (cotton blend) lacy type sweater. Something pretty that can be worn in warm times too!
Check out Knitty
for some ideas. There is also this
site for free patterns.