I’m visual. I can’t write a knitting pattern without first charting every stitch in the project. Only when I can ‘see’ the imagined design in graph form, do I know I have the silhouette and proportions right.
I also can’t imagine how colors in a Fair Isle pattern are going to work together until I’ve swatched them in pattern. One of my first, not-so-great experiences with colorwork knitting involved lovely shades of soft gray, blue gray, and mauve pink. In skeins, the colors looked beautiful together. But knitted up, they blended with each other and turned my crisp Fair Isle motifs to mush. There wasn’t enough contrast in hue or value. Alas.
Nowadays, I never leap in without swatching my color combos first. I’m not as adventurous as I sometimes wish I were when working with more than one color. I instinctively look for something dark or neutral for a background. In this case, on a lark, I chose creamy white, fully expecting that I’d try out other color combos. But I liked how clean and clear the colors Orange Attitude, in particular looked on the light background. Even sober Major Grey looked airy on the pristine soft white. It’s rare that I like my first try, but in this instance, I was good to go after the first few rows.
Princess 40% merino, 28% viscose, 10% cashmere, 15% nylon, and 7% angora
The 29 colors in the Princess color palette are rich and lively and offer many colorwork possibilities. And Princess is good in color patterns for another reason: its round, multi-ply construction makes smooth, even stitches. And its cashmere and angora content provide a subtle halo and soften the crisp edges of stitches so they flow together. As you knit with Princess, you’ll feel it bloom.
Princess’s round construction also shows off texture stitches and lends strength and durability to the yarn. At a gauge of 5 stitches per inch, Princess is light enough for smaller projects and still has enough substance for garments.
To join the cast-on and bind-off edges of the Princess Fair Isle Neck Ring, we suggest either the Kitchner Stitch or a three-needle bind off.
The Kitchener stitch is a way of joining the exposed stitches still on the needle to those from the provisional cast-on end, using the project’s yarn threaded through a tapestry needle. This makes a join that is as close as you can get to being invisible.
Learn how to do the Kitchener stitch.
Working a three-needle bind off involves using a third needle and binding off the stitches along the inside of the piece. While this method leaves a more visible join, many find it faster and easier than the Kitchener stitch. We love to use the three-needle bind off to join shoulder seams.
Learn how to do the three needle bind off.
Here is the free downloadable Princess Fair Isle Neck Ring pattern.
If you have difficulty downloading or printing the PDF pattern above, try this: