I have been completely obsessed with stranded colorwork lately. I can’t get it off of my mind.


I love unexpected color combinations, and updated takes on traditional stranded knitting, especially Fair Isle and Norwegian styles.


And I love how people use stranded colorwork to embrace and display their creative, and sometimes nerdy, sides.


I haven’t done a lot of stranded knitting, but as I said, I can’t get it off my mind at the moment. I just picked up Alice Starmore’s Book of Fair Isle Knitting and I can’t wait to have some time to myself to sit and absorb all of the delectable information that it has, as well as attempt to put together some of her Fair Isle stitch patterns into… something. I should probably start small.

I also very much want Ann Feitelson’s Art of Fair Isle Knitting. This book keeps catching my eye whenever I stop into the bookstore. Much like Alice’s book, Ann’s shares a lot of the history of Fair Isle knitting, as well as including patterns and instructions on choosing colors and colorwork patterns.

I don’t think I’ve seen this book in person yet, but Janine Kosel’s Norwegian Handknits also appeals to my stranded senses. As does Traditional Scandinavian Knitting by Sheila MacGregor.

Of course, I’m all about pairing crazy colors. I really love the yellow and purple (maybe brown? I can’t tell) Norwegian socks, and the orange and blue cowl and sweater. But I also have a crazy hankering for monochrome schemes. For instance, Lisa Shroyer’s Bandelier Socks are positively SCREAMING to be knit in shades of purple. Maybe you can’t hear them, but they’ve been yelling in my head for weeks.

I realize this is a common cry on my blog (and many other knitters’ blogs) but sigh. So much knitting to do; so little time.

1. Minder’s Paper Dolls; 2. MariannAn’s Red Delicious; 3. elf518’s Stem and Leaf Cowl; 4. Pinneguri’s Womens’ Stockings; 5. tsigknit’s Fair Isle Pullover; 6. ssailorss’ Norwegian Stockings; 7. elf518’s Robot Fair Isle Sweater; 8. Courtney Kelley’s Tulip Cardigan; 9. Prelapsaria’s Kids Space Invaders Hoodie


6 thoughts on “Stranded!

  1. I absolutely love stranded work- but my first foray into multiple colours was a bit of a disaster. I accomplished the slippers but it left me wanting to wait a tad until I tried it again. Now time has gone by and I look at all the gorgeous stranded projects and try to convince myself to give it another go.
    I’m a thrower, never could get the hand of continental- which is a bit of a hamper I’ve heard?

    • I’m also a thrower, but as I said on Twitter (I think?) I haven’t really done enough to see if that affects anything. Clover makes a yarn guide that might help. (KnitPicks has a better image of the same thing in action). I’ve heard that the easiest way to do stranded is to actually use both hands–throw with one color, pick with the other. My tensioning in Continental is soooo bad that I don’t know if it would work for me, but it maybe something I try… eventually. πŸ™‚

  2. I’m with you. I love the color combos and the great designs, but my eyes are definitely bigger than my needles!

    (that space invaders one is hilarious! And the cowl is gorgeous – who thought of those two colors together??)

    • I love the space invaders stuff. The only real “stranded” stuff I’ve done was a pillow that had the space invaders chart on one side. πŸ˜€

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