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Fair Isle Style

September 14, 2013

This was a fun little project, and I’m so happy to be included in the lovely Mary Jane Mucklestone’s latest book — Fair Isle Style.The subtitle of the book is ’20 Fresh Designs for a Classic Technique’, and the designs live up to that. My own is made up of classic small Fair Isle patterns, peeries (my cousin’s wife is from Shetland and calls their toddler son ‘peerie britches’ — isn’t that adorable?). Working the stranded colourwork loosely in a lace weight yarn totally changes the appearance and I really like the woven effect on the wrong side. It seems important that the wrong side of a loose cowl should look good, it’s definitely going to be seen. The Fair Isle is interspersed with bands of garter stitch, worked in the round with no purling using this fantastic technique. 

The book has an excellent range of patterns for both garments and accessories. Gudrun Johnston’s Bressay dress is one of my favourites, I love the shape of the pockets and that they provide an unusual canvas for colourwork — often less flattering lower on a garment.

Carrie Bostick Hodge’s Peerie Weerie Booties are utterly adorable, and this wee kitten seems to think so too.   

I’ve long admired designers Courtney Kelley and Kate Gagnon Osbourne from Kelbourne Woolens for their ability to use traditional patterns and techniques in modern, very wearable designs and they both have patterns in Fair Isle Style. Courtney’s Fara Raglan is like a very classy striped t-shirt and I love that it’s a sampler for different peerie patterns.

Inspired? Tell me which design you’d like to knit from Fair Isle Style and we’ll draw a random comment to win a copy of Fair Isle Style,signed just for you by Mary Jane. I’m jumping in a little early but look out for a blog tour from the other designers featured in the book later this month. The contest will close at midnight GMT on Friday, September 20th — good luck!

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