To weave or not to weave

(I know variations of “To be or not to be” are waaaay more overused than necessary in attempts to be clever, but I couldn’t resist!)

So I’m wanting to do Fair Isle. I used the video that Jan in CA suggested from Philosopher’s Wool, and it was an amazing tutorial on how to do two-handed Fair Isle. The lady in the video taught that if you’re going to have three or more of one color, you have to weave the other color in the back, and I’ve been doing it and liked the results. But I have seen the WS of a lot of people’s Fair Isle work, and it doesn’t look like they do the same. I will see three or four of one color, and the other is just going across the back. So, should I be weaving it in the back, or not? Which is the proper way?

I don’t know if there is a “proper” way, but if you like the way yours looks when it’s completed, I’d say stick with it. :slight_smile:


Proper? This is another topic some people argue about I’m sure. Elizabeth Zimmermann the “opinionated knitter” had this to say (I’m not looking at it right now, just remembering)… She didn’t see the need for them but suggested that you try to do patterns with no more than 5 stitches between the color changes. She said if there is nothing there throw something in. :thumbsup: She liked to keep things simple. EZ says the strands carried across the back will felt to the inside of the item (she always used wool) and never be a problem of any kind.

I’m with EZ. I have noticed that when I try to weave the yarns between uses that they tend to show. If you have to carry the yarn a long ways (one doesn’t always want to go throwing extra stitches into designs as EZ did :lol:) you will have to do some sort of weaving, otherwise I wouldn’t do it. Not needed. Too much work. Might show.

When I’ve done fair isle I weave in anything with more than about 3 stitches. I think it’s too easy to stick your fingers or toes through the strands otherwise, but maybe I’m being overly cautious.

You never have to weave every stitch–I usually go an inch or so, depending on the pattern. The one I’m doing now has long strands, but I didn’t bother to weave them unless they were very, very long. Too lazy. It looks fine, though.