Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Fair Isle conquered (well almost)

Fair Isle and I have a love/hate relationship.

I love the repetitive patterns, the chance to mix different colours together, the cuteness of vintage kids' knits and of course the appeal of a Fair Isle beret.

I hate following the charts; getting confused with the decreases whilst trying to keep to the pattern and maintaining an even tension.

So when Helen at LoveKnitting asked me if I would like to review a pattern from Debbie Bliss' Land Girls book, I thought it would be an opportune moment for me to attempt the Fair Isle child's beret included within it. Helen kindly posted the yarn and book to me, and I set to work whilst recovering from my recent bout of pneumonia. I have to admit that it took about five attempts to get the start of the Fair Isle pattern right; I ended up ripping out the rows down to the ribbed band and re-starting at that point. It wasn't too bad once I got into the swing of the pattern repeats and I even managed to strand the knitting at the back of the work relatively neatly and without any puckering. However, when I started the decreases everything went downhill; so I popped onto Ravelry and found some tips that other knitters had posted when knitting this pattern. Armed with my new found knowledge, I re-attempted the decreases - but still no joy. So, I thought "Stuff that - I'm going to do it my way"! Okay, the finished item isn't exactly like that in the photo in the book, but I'm happy, Monkeychild is happy and it fits her noggin a treat!





What I've learnt from knitting this beret is to persevere and if things do start to go wrong, then its okay to do your own thing and deviate from the pattern. It doesn't matter if the finished item doesn't look exactly like the one in the book, magazine etc. - as long as you're happy with it and it it fits, then that's all what matters.

Finally, those kind people at LoveKnitting have offered readers of this blog a 10% discount when using code 10TVK at the checkout on their website http://www.loveknitting.com This discount runs for a month only from the date of this post.

Happy knitting, folks!

P.S. London-based LoveKnitting currently has a vacancy for a customer support assistant, so if you're interested check out the details at http://www.loveknitting.com/jobs

19 comments :

  1. This is STUNNING! Just stunning! x

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  2. Sooooo impressed VK. Your 'free-styling' has worked a treat. What a gorgeous bonnet! You do realise that we're queueing up for you to make us all one now don't you?

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  3. Oh, Monkeychild looks lovely in her beret! Fair Isle is really addictive, it's such fun seeing the pattern work out.

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  4. Monkeychild is so pretty and looks lovely in her beret! Good lord, woman, your skills never cease to astound me! x

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  5. That is absolutely gorgeous wish I was that advanced in my Knitting

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  6. Stunning beret. I love knitting fair isle.
    I once knitted my grand-daughter a fair isle cardigan complete with hood
    Julie xxxx

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  7. Beautiful beret - I have that book too. x

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  8. This is just beautiful. I have just started knitting and the simplest instructions have me flummoxed. I know I could never hope to achieve anything like this.

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    1. Don't give up yet Fiona, give it a bit of time and you'll be able to do Fair Isle. If I can just about get to grips I'm sure you will be able to too :-)

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  9. The beret looks wonderful, i'd love to create one like that too! xxxx

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  10. That looks fantastic, monkeychild really suits it. I have a lot of respect for people who can do fair isle as I struggle with basic knitting! My granny used to do fair isle and I still wear the gloves she made me.

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  11. Dearest Liza,
    Oh! my !! Goodness , its wonderful , i so wish i could knit , maybe you could teach me !! ha ha!!
    As you can imagine i adore fairisle knits ,along with my berets , sadly i dont have a fairisle beret , so can i put my order in for one please , i'm never without a hat up here in the welsh mountains , i truelly am in need
    love rachel xx

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    1. Gonna have to teach you when you come to visit xxx

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  12. Just found your blog and loving it. Maybe we can follow each other on GFC or bloglovin? Please feel free to stop by my blog and let me know. XO

    http://mevamarie.blogspot.com/

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  13. Fair Isle eh?
    That makes you a veritable knitting machine!
    Good job, my mother always knitted fair isle

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  14. Your beret is beautiful - perfectly 1950s (and before I suspect) I remember wearing one very similar. We 'met' on the English Buildings blog, I thought this post of yours was the most appropriate to comment on!

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    1. Aha! Now it makes sense! I thought exactly the same as you when I saw the photo in Philip's recent post: http://englishbuildings.blogspot.co.uk/2013/04/oxford_21.html

      Let me know if you do knit it and thanks for popping by the leave a comment :-)

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  15. That looks so good! I have been dying to try some fair isle projects. Maybe when I finish my current sweater I will have to try a fair isle patterned hat :)

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  16. Really lovely, well done!
    I did a lot of Fair Isle knitting a while back and feel quite inspired to do some more after seeing your lovely beret. Thanks for the link to the love knitting website too, I've just found a lovely Fair Isle jumper on there in a Debbie Bliss book called Rialto Classics and searching a bit further on the net learned that it's called the 'Land Girl' jumper and seems to be very popular (I'm a bit behind the times as new to the world of blogs!). Currently knitting a vintage cabled cardi, but I think a F.I. will be next!

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