Intarsia vs. fair isle vs stranding

I am knitting or [I]was[/I] knitting the squirrel and oak mittens at the following link: I was knitting one mitten on two circs. Everything was going along just fine until I reached a part in the pattern where the yarn would need to be carried almost all the way around the mitten, which obviously doesn’t work. So, I went back and watched Amy’s videos on intarsia and stranded knitting. My question is, how do you know whether a pattern should be stranded or intarsia? I would think that this particular pattern would be a combination of stranded and intarsia. Over how many stitches can the contrasting yarn be carried? I would think that carrying the yarn beyond four or five stitches would cause a problem on the wrong side of the work. I have frogged the mitten to start over, but does anyone know of a good explanation of intarsia vs. fair isle vs. stranded?

I agree with you in general, that if it’s more than 4 or 5 stitches, it’s not a good idea to do stranded knitting. On the other hand, I have heard that doing intarsia in the round is a real pain in the rear. (Here is an article that explains why and some solutions: I haven’t actually done it myself, but I can see why…

I couldn’t get the pattern to open, but I looked at a picture on Ravelry, and it does look to me like a combination of Fair Isle and intarsia would work for this pattern.

ETA: About Fair Isle vs. stranded. They are done the same way, and the terms are frequently used interchangeably. Strictly speaking, though, Fair Isle means you don’t have any more than two colors on one round.

Thanks so much! That’s what I thought, but I didn’t know if I was understanding the three terms. I’ll give it another try!