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Welcome to the Fearless Fair Isle Project!

This project started out as an idea in my knitting blog -- my online journal of my knitting. I was knitting a fair isle this past spring and asked my readers if they'd like me to design an "easy" fair isle that everyone could knit along with. I had some interest, so did the charts and developed a pattern. I started a Yahoo group to make it easier for us all to talk to each other.

The pattern, charts, and swatches are available in the links below the header, above.

So here's the deal.

The pattern is for a slightly cropped pullover with a crew neck and dropped shoulders and ribbing around the bottom. It is designed for two sizes: 42" and 45.5" around. The total length for the sweater is 22(24)inches, which for me just hits the top of the hip. If you like your sweaters longer or shorter, you can change the length.

I'm making the 42" size -- I wear a size 6 or 8 and have a 36" bust, so you can gauge what size you think you want from that.

The design uses 7 colors and I've designed 3 different colorways. The recommended yarn is shetland jumperweight wool (roughly equivalent to fingering weight). I'm making the purple colorway in Jamieson & Smith's jumperweight shetland.

There are good reasons for using shetland wool for a sweater that is constructed using steeks. For more information about this, I suggest you read my blog entries listed below.


Read the page from the bottom up, as the oldest entries are at the bottom. There's a lot of info on steeks there and step-by-step photos of me cutting a steek.

My recommended gauge is 8 stitches per inch and I get that using a US size 3 (3.25mm) needle. This may sound tight to some of you, but color knitting tends to tighten your gauge. Be sure to check your gauge on a two-color swatch. I did order my wool directly from Jamieson & Smith in Scotland. I emailed my order to them. There is more information on ordering on their website at:


Many U.S. LYS carry Jamieson & Smith shetland wool, as do many U.S. mail order sources -- there is no reason why you can't order from them. Tracy and some of you others did a wonderful job yesterday of figuring out how much yarn you'll need of each color. You can check the message archives on the group page at Yahoo for discussions of how much yarn to order:


Please note that the pattern has not been tested yet, so I can't guarantee that it's error-free. But I'll be knitting from the pattern and will be able to correct any problems as we go along. And if some of you notice problems I hope you'll post them on-list.

We'll "officially" start knitting on July 29, 2002. You can actually start any time you want, but this will give us a ballpark idea of when we're all going to embark on the project.

Please remember that I have a pretty demanding full-time job (and try to have a life) so I'm not always available to answer questions. I will always get back to you eventually. You should also know that I'm away from my computer for most of each weekend.

But we've got many great minds on this list, so another member may be able to jump in and offer assistance before I get a chance to.

Lastly, thanks everyone for joining the list. Whether you decide to knit along, or just watch, I think we'll all learn something here.