knitting

A Fine Day For Fair Isle

What better way to welcome spring than with a ear warmer headband?

For the last two weekends, I have been working on learning how to knit fair isle/ stranded color work.  This particular technique was really important to me in terms of learning the correct way of doing things, so I signed up for a class at my local yarn store.

My goal with stranded colorwork is to make amazing and custom knit stockings for my family.  In fact, that was really the project I had in mind when I started knitting.  I had found some on Etsy that I absolutely loved but they I didn’t want to pay the $85 the seller was asking (what’s funny is that now, after learning to knit, $85 seems on the low end when I factor in the probable number of hours she spent on them!!). Anyway, that is still my goal.  I’ve learned how to make socks and I’ve learned how to do color work… I’m ready to go!

I have to tell you, I am completely surprised at how easy it was.  It seems like with everything related to knitting, it’s just getting used to a new way of holding things or a new hand position or something like that.  Knitting color work was no different.  What made it even easier, since I knit continental, is this handy little yarn guide! I feel like using the yarn guide actually helped me practice my continental knitting and made me a faster, overall knitter as well.  I’m excited to use it again for my next color work project.  Word to the wise though, the exact same yarn guide was half the price at my Local Yarn Store, so maybe shop around for that 🙂

The pattern I used was the Star and Wave Headband and I used two colors of Berroco Vintage yarn (the dark color is blue moon, but I can’t find the colorway for the lighter blue- sorry!).  I think it turned out absolutely beautifully and it’s actually reversible as you’ll see in the Ravelry link below.

I have to tell you, I was amazingly pleased with my progression through the project.  While I’m sure seasoned knitters could find something wrong with it, I didn’t make any mistakes, I thought my tension looked good, and I don’t really think it looks like a “beginner project”.  In short, I absolutely loved working it.  However, when it came to binding off, I made a fatal error.  I bound off too tightly.  It had absolutely no stretch at all to it and the way the pattern works is the cast on and cast off edges are folded under and end up in the center of the reversed side– it wouldn’t fit my head.  In tears, I turned to the internet and found out that you can UNDO a bind off! I had no idea! So in my class this weekend, my teacher helped me undo my bind-off and showed me an extra stretchy one to use instead.  This is similar to the one she taught me, though we started out doing the first bind off stitch normally.

It ended up working out and I steam blocked it, sewed up the cast on and off rows and now I have a beautiful headband!

Here’s a link to my project page on Ravelry .

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