Home > Knitbuddies > Welcome

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

kitty: maybe studying colourwork, just maybe

Yarn: Dragonfly Fibers - Firestar Dragonfly Squishy Sock & Sailor's warning dragon sock Both are really beautiful hand dyes, with no pooling. I really do love Dragonfly Fibers yarns.

Ok, MG, before you say a word... I may have embarked into the world of colourwork. Something like lace I said that I would never do, couldn't do, it is just to hard, and just plane old not going to do it. Oh, and like lace I might have decided to find vintage references because really why make life easy and just learn the modern convention. :) One must confuse yourself even more to aid in those conventional fears of colourwork.

So I have been studying colourwork from the following "schools of thought"; Faroe Isle, Florentine, Shetland, Scandinavian, Twinned, Armenian, English, and the misnomer of Fair Isle Knitting.

"'Fair Isle Knitting' is only practiced on Fair Isle. The hall marks of a genuine Fair Isle are -

a. The method in which the colour design is worked, and
b. the sequence of pattering that change all the way up a garment.

In these sequences, a broad pattern carried out in a number of colours is generally followed by a a narrow pattern carried out in two to three colours only.

The pattering is always done on a ground of white, fawn, grey, or brown. Bold, clear colouring are always used for the patterning as these give the traditional effect known as Fair Isle Knitting."

-Odhams Encyclopedia of Knitting
by James Nornury & Margaret Agutler.

Each of the different type of "schools" have different ways of locking stitches, binding stitches, how much a loop to use, what is the ordering of colour. Really a fascinating subject. Though Armenian and Twinned may win out for me for the technique that is the easiest and fastest to knit.


  1. Wow; that's really cool. I've hardly even dipped a toe into color work of any kind. I'm seriously thinking about it, though :)

  2. Your swatch looks great! I love the bolt colors. I used to do cross stitch with those people patterns too. Colorwork is still very hard for me, I don't do it often.

  3. About time. I know you have colorwork socks to work on too.