Things I have learnt about fair-isle knitting (or stranded colour work, if you will) from my first item that I have knitted in this way..
- Tension is everything: and it's tough. It's something I've always struggled with - my mother says I knit tightly, but it lapses into something sloppy far too often.
- Making a little card with a sample of each colour (particularly when they're so similar) is such a godsend! There are so many similar colours in this project, it was driving me crazy.
- So many ends to sew in. So. Many. Ends.
- My respect for fair-isle knitters like Alice Starmore has expanded incredibly, and also increased my interest in visiting the Shetland isles ten-fold.
- It looks harder than it is! Two colours on each row is actually pretty easy to handle, once you get into the swing of it.
- I also learnt the hard way the importance of keeping the same colour on the top or the bottom, there are hundreds of posts out there about this!
- I think good needles are important. I was using Knit Pro's Nova interchangeable ones, because the tips are so smooth because they're metal, and they have a good point on them without being too sharp.
- Did I mention I have a lot of ends to sew in? Sigh.
I finished the hat about two weeks ago and I still haven't sewn in the ends. When I get it all finished and blocked I'll show you a better photos!