How to add colors knitting Christmas stocking

I’m knitting a Christmas stocking and trying to add the name, a tree, santa, etc. Stuck on how to knit the colors in. Do I use bobbins? How much thread in each if so? Do you tie the thread on in the middle of the work where the color starts? How do you manage the main color when adding the colors?

There are three ways of adding color - duplicate stitch, stranded (fair isle) and intarsia.

Duplicate stitch is done after the work is finished. It’s done by adding color over the stitches.

Stranded (fair isle) is usually done in the round and used colors that go all the way around in some pattern.

Intarsia is done flat and is for larger blocks of color that is only in one area…like a Santa on a stocking for instance. You have a separate section of color for each color change. They are wound on bobbins, butterflies, or just a long tail.

I suggest practicing any method first to get the hang of it. There are videos under the video tab/advanced techniques.

I am going to knit some stockings with my kids names on them for Christmas 2010 and I have a great pattern… before that I need to learn the Fair Isle method since that is best for in-the-round knitting. Plus, my pattern is from the 1940s and calls for that method. I’ve been watching the videos here.

Keep in mind though that intarsia really needs to be done flat. The reason is that you don’t take the yarn all the way around the knitting so it ends up on the wrong side if you’re knitting in the round. If you do carry the yarn around the color can sometimes show through when you catch the floats. You can do duplicate stitch instead if you still prefer to knit in the round.