Friday, October 17, 2014


My current work in progress is a Fair Isle waistcoat.  I'm using jewel colours of Jamieson and Smith's 2-ply jumper weight, set against a darker yarn.

 Some years ago a friend at a knitting group insisted that I take a very large cone of dark yarn home with me.  More recently I tried knitting a small swatch, and I was amazed.  Where the yarn looked dark brown, it was actually made up of one strand of turquoise and mauve and another of rust and dark brown, so that in sunlight it glows.  The cone was oiled for the machine so probably intended for machine knitting "Shetland" jumpers.  Now that I have washed it to remove the dressing it has a much nicer handle.

In about 1980 I first saw the 2ply jumper weight in a shop called "The Shepherd's Purse" in Whitby.  They seemed to have skeins of the full spectrum of colours, hanging on a line across the shop: it was wonderful.  I chose some yarn for a striped jumper, which I wore into the ground.  Of course, I had some leftovers.  Later, more was added to my stock as remnants from Kaffe Fassett and Sasha Kagan projects.  As I use these stored yarns in this project they seem to me like precious things, not simply oddments of yarn.  In sunlight, all their blended, tweedy colours shine..

I am using patterns from Sheila McGregor's book on traditional Fair Isle.  All of these have thirteen rows but each is subtly different.  I'm working up to placing the rust colour, which may or may not work.  The back will be plain stocking stitch, and is providing my travel knitting at present.



LizM said...

Looks great so far, I'll be interested to see how the rust works. I've been enjoying the travelogue but guess you must be home if you are embarking on fair isle. LizM said...

Hi Shandy,

That looks really lovely. I keep looking at my fair isle books, and patterns, and.......well, despite my ravelry name being 'fairisler' I've done very little since starting knitting again in 2009. I've made a Rams and Yowes blanket - which is still waiting for its' edging, and a few bits and bobs, but have spectacularly failed to actually get to grips with the planning and swatching that would be needed for a full garment. I think your lovely work might well inspire me now, though, so Thank You !!

MaureenTakoma said...

Really beautiful colors. I'll be interested to see how/if you incorporate the golden rust.

Mary Lou said...

Enjoying seeing the knitting and the journey.