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The Very Easy Guide to Fair Isle Knitting
  • Publisher: Search Press
  • Edition: BC Paperback
  • Publication: 02 January 2013
  • ISBN 13/EAN: 9781844488964
  • Stock: 50+
  • Size: 215x254 mm
  • Illustrations: 160
  • Pages: 144
  • RRP: £12.99
More Information

The Very Easy Guide to Fair Isle Knitting


Step-by-step techniques, easy-to-follow stitch patterns, and projects to get you started by Lynne Watterson (Author)

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Book Description

Fair Isle knitting may look complicated, but it really is easy to do once you understand the basics. Author Lynne Watterson starts beginners off with the basics of two-color knitting: reading a Fair Isle chart; what to do with all the fiddly yarn ends, and getting to grips with circular needles.

The main chapters feature a selection of beautiful stitch patterns. Each pattern has clear instructions in both written and chart form, and these are cross-referenced to a comprehensive guide to abbreviations.

Each of the main chapters includes simple, stylish projects demonstrating ways to use the beautifully shaded Fair Isle patterns—from chic accessories and the latest fashion looks to contemporary cushion covers and throws.

Table of Contents

Foreword 8

About this book 9
Lesson 1: Yarns 10
Lesson 2: Choosing colors 12
Lesson 3: Knitting kit 14

Knitting basics 16
Lesson 4: Casting on 18
Lesson 5: Knit and purl 20
Lesson 6: Reversible fabrics 22
Lesson 7: Binding off 23
Lesson 8: Increasing 24
Lesson 9: Decreasing 25
Lesson 10: Gauge 26
Lesson 11: Circular knitting 28
Lesson 12: Holding the yarns 30
Lesson 13: Stranding 31
Lesson 14: Weaving 32
Lesson 15: Charts 34

Fair Isle patterns 36

Stitch guide 38
Lesson 16: Corrugated ribbing 40
Lesson 17: Seeding 44
- Project 1: Child’s cardigan 52, Project 2: Child’s hoodie 54
Lesson 18: Fair Isle bands 56
- Project 3: Fingerless mitts 80, Project 4: Hot water bottle cover 82, Project 5: Beret 84, Project 6: Legwarmers 86, Project 7: Hat and scarf 88
Lesson 19: Fair Isle patterns 90
- Project 8: Mug cozies and pot holders 116, Project 9: Bag 118, Project 10: Throw 120, Project 11: Cushions 124

Finishing Techniques 126
Lesson 20: Blocking and pressing 128
Lesson 21: Perfect seams 130
Lesson 22: Adding beads 132
Lesson 23: Tassels 134
Lesson 24: Pompoms 135
Lesson 25: Twisted cord 136
Lesson 26: Fringing 137
Lesson 27: Adding buttons 138
Lesson 28: Aftercare essentials 140

Abbreviations 141

Index 142

Credits 144

About the Author

About Lynne Watterson

Lynne Watterson has been knitting and designing for as long as she can remember. At the age of five she designed her first outfit a sweater, hat and scarf ensemble for her Sindy doll. With knitting in her blood, her grandfather was a machine knitter and her grandmother a patter checker for a knitting publication, it came as no surprise to her family when on leaving school she worked as a knitting sub-editor at IPC Magazines. Lynne has edited many craft magazines in her career including FashioncraftHand Knitting NewsMachine Knitting NewsCross StitchNeedlecraft MagicCross Stitch Magic, as well as contributing to many others including Prima and Ideal Home. Lynne lives and works in the Cotswolds, UK.


Journal for Weavers, Spinners & Dyers

Nov 13

Fair Isle Knitting, or knitting with two colours at once, is generally considered to be a more advanced knitting technique. It is seen to be tricky because of learning the coordination of controlling both yarns at once, weaving in long floats, and the artistic use of colour and pattern. But, like many things, its easy once you know how. Unfortunately, this book does not have the magic to teach a newish knitter how to do Fair Isle. It starts at a basic level discussing yarns, how to cast on, tension swatches, etc. There are only four pages, showing how to hold the yarns for stranding, and weaving, specifically for Fair Isle. The majority of the book contains stitch guides with patterns for traditional and non-traditional two colour patterns. Most are quite simple, with a few more complex ones using three colours over the pattern. Also included are some simple, quick to make, projects for accessories and childrens clothing. Unfortunately, these are mainly knitted in the flat. Personally, I find purling in two colours more fiddly than knitting, and this difficulty is not covered in the book. Assuming that you have knitted in the round before, Fair Isle can be much easier as a knit stitch.

If you are a new knitter who wants to learn Fair Isle, I would recommend learning by watching someone (in a class or video). I dont think this book gives you enough help to master the coordination and technique.


Sept 13

If you admire the intricacy and timelessness of Fair Isle knitting but think it looks too complicated, this book might just be what you need. It promises to be very easy, with step-by-step instructions, easy projects and all the information you require to get started. But is this all true? I was impressed by the user-friendly layout of this book. It even starts out by showing you how to use it for the best results, and is divided helpfully into three sections. These are the basics of knitting, the patterns and finishing techniques. Each section is divided into a number of lessons, twenty-eight in total taking you from things like understanding yarns and ball bands and having the right kit to aftercare. In between you can actually learn to knitfrom casting on to the basic stitches you need to learn in order to do this style. If you are a quick learner you might be able to truly get all you need to know to make the projects, but most people would probably be better off learning the nuts and bolts of knitting elsewhere and getting a few plain projects under their belts first. There are some very clear diagrams in here, some of the best I have seen, and a particularly informative and simple guide to working out tension. The patterns themselves come with a handy guide to what they all look like on two pages, and each pattern is easy to follow and starts from the simplest, getting harder throughout the book. The projects come after a set of related patterns and give you a chance to practice what you have just learned while making something attractive and useful. A childs cardigan, hat and scarf set, bag, throw, mug hugs and my favorite the hot water bottle cover are some examples. Finally you can learn how to block, press and look after your new items as well as add beads and buttons or make simple trims like pompoms and tassels. I dont think I have seen many knitting books that explain what you actually need to know better than this one, very highly recommended.

Machine Knitting Monthly

June 13

Former editor of MK news, Lynne has put together a clear step-by-step guide to hand knitting Fair Isle. She includes masses of useful charts and colourways to inspire every machine knitter. Whilst ideal for electronic machines, many of the charts can be transferred or adapted slightly for punchcard knitting.


Issue 60

This is an essential guide for those who may be a little apprehensive about Fair Isle as Lynne Watterson provides easy step-by-step instructions and stitch patterns to build your confidence. The book is divided into lessons, from knowing your knitting kit, yarns and knitting basics to the ever important colour choices when knitting Fair Isle: increasing, circular knitting, adding beads and weaving. A wide range of stitch patterns are featured, including corrugated ribbing, seeding (which produces beautiful heart shapes), Fair Isle bands and the Fair Isle patterns themselves. The book also showcases 11 easy-to-follow projects so you can test your newly-acquired skills. The patterns have nice clear charts for easy reading and the book is must-have for the next step in knitting.

Mollie Makes Magazine

Issue 25

Let Fair Isle expert Lynne Watterson help you master the basics of this technique with her new book. Learn how to read patterns, use circular needles and most importantly what to do with all those fiddly yarn ends. We can't wait to get started on tons of vintage-style looks.

Knitter, The

Issue 55

If you've yet to try your hand at stranded colourwork, or if you'd just like a decent stitch guide to classic Fair Isle motifs to help with your own designing, this book is a great buy. Lynne Watterson covers all the basics in a series of lessons, from holding the yarns, stranding and weaving, to the importance of tension and how to read charts. A range of 11 simple patterns helps you to practise each technique.

Karen Platt Yarnsandfabrics.co.uk/crafts

Jan 13

This is the second in the Very Easy Guides. The introduction includes all about yarn, colour and materials to get you started. The knitting basics section is illustrated with excellent line drawings showing basic techniques and stitches. The stitch guide takes up the majority of the pages. There is a two page colour overview of all the stitch patterns included. Each stitch is described and illustrated in colour, there is also a small chart showing the pattern for those who prefer to work from charts. The book is set out as lessons, 28 of them in all. The final lessons are on beading, finishing and more. There are projects to use your new found skills every step of the way. I particularly liked the fingerless gloves and the beret. I really liked this book, but didn't feel it stretched the subject and that a lot of the patterns were too basic. However, it is aimed at the beginner, so I think it hits the target well. It has a good, constructive approach.

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Also by this author:

The Very Easy Guide to Cable Knitting

The Very Easy Guide to Cable Knitting

By Lynne Watterson


The Very Easy Guide to Lace Knitting

The Very Easy Guide to Lace Knitting

By Lynne Watterson


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