Thursday, September 28, 2006


Moral Support Needed!

Hi All,
I've started what will be only my 5th knitting project- the Nina Shawl. It seemed simple enough, but those fair isley checks have got me feeling up tight! It seems like such a struggle to knit this way. The rows seem crazily loose, and it seems like when I make a stitch it pulls up the slack of the stranding. Any fair isle experts out there? Is this what it's like? I've never felt like I wanted to avoid my knitting before, but the fair isle is causing that! Please help my like this process (and feel comfortable about it) just long enough to get to the very long stockinette part!! Then I'll get a nice rest before I have to do it at the other end...

I wouldn't call me a fair isle expert, but I LOVE fair isle & have done a decent amount - a couple of sweaters (fair isle in the whole thing, not just the yoke), and tons of socks & hats and stuff.
I meant to add, send me an email and I'll see if I can help you. I'm not really sure exactly what you are asking!
anastacia at intergate dot com
You might want to try this technique for the checks. I have the details on this page of my blog in the Pattern section:
Dish Towel in the Nina Shawl Pattern.

Kelly, who posted on this site, gave this suggestion for using Barbara Walker's slip stitch check to substitute for the fair isle check. I thought it was so good, I have included it on my site. If you can't find it, let me know.
Just take it one step at a time. And, think through to the end - to how good you will have felt after you've conquered the challenge. You can do it. It may not always be perfect and you will learn a lot along the way but you will be proud of yourself in the end and you'll have a gorgeous item.
Good luck
thanks guys! I think I'll just try to tough it out since it does seem to look okay. Anastacia, if catknitz suggestions don't help I will certainly take you up on your offer of tutoring!
Hey Lynne, if you don't end up likeing to do fair isle, just remember that not everyone does. I've been knitting a long time, and done fair isle here and there, but I really don't care for it. So don't let it make you feel bad if you don't like it. Definitely don't let it turn you away from your knitting. Hang in there for this project, I certainly don't want to discourage you. I just want you to know that it's okay not to like fair isle knitting.
Kelly here -- this is the Nina dishtowel Cathy referred to in the comment above. The slipped checks are on pp 259-260 of Barbara Walker's Third Treasury. An important note: you need to be using a circular needle (or dpns) to make it work. But what could be more Mason Dixon-ish than slipped stiches?

And thanks, Cathy, for putting the link on your blog; from the look of my visitor stats, plenty of people appreciate finding it there!
Thanks Kelly- love your blog and LOVE the Nina towel! SO cute. And the colors are marvelous. I think I'm too far into the fair isle checks at this point to switch (although I always use circulars 'cause I have a set, therefore many sizes/less $!) but I have enlisted anastacia for help and hopefully all will be well by the other end!!
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