Thursday, 19 September 2019

The Prairie Fairy

Thank you for your kind words on my last post. I will hold them dear.

I consider myself one lucky knitter. My twelve year old has wanted a fair isle jumper for a long time. We have seen lots of patterns where she is always drawn to the colours and patterns. Trouble is, she hates wearing pure wool. She requested one made in cotton. Fair Isle/Norwegian sweaters are not traditionally made from cotton but if a pre-teen asks for a hand knit jumper, you have to try your best and work around it.

I started this pattern on the first of March. It is called the Prairie Fairy and it is free on Ravelry. 

She helped me choose the yarn online and I explained to her how colour values work so that the sweater pattern stands out and doesn't merge into one colourful trifle. The dark red and cream were the key colours. She coloured in the chart with felt pens to show me which ones she wanted where. 

It is worked top down so we were able to make the sleeves and body the length she wanted with a few fittings as it got longer. She doesn't wear crop tops but a short jumper was a good teenage compromise.

I knit the sleeve cuffs on much smaller needles so that they weren't baggy. She liked the neckline and was happy that she could wear a T-shirt underneath without it showing.

But crikey the ends, oh the ends! It took a whole evening to re tie them and sew them in.

She wore it the day after I finished it with such enthusiasm. 

As I say, I am one lucky knitter. I am not sure how much longer she will ask me to knit her things but I know my card will soon be marked. Every item she asks for feels like another triumph of childhood. In another fortunate stroke of serendipity, her younger sister does not ask for hand knits. She asks for hoodies or sweatshirts to be sewn on the machine. This means everyone gets what they want in a time frame they can wear before they grow too quickly.

Thanks for dropping in. What are you knitting?
Jo xxxxx


  1. You might find yourself surprised, my nearly 19 year old still fancies a mum knitted jumper... I love this Fair Isle jumper, the colours are pretty with the main blue matching her eyes. I didn't think it would be possible to knit fair isle with cotton yarn but then nothing is impossible if you are called Jo and are super talented! I am knitting a pink Polaris jumper for myself, ever so slowly. xx

  2. Never occurred to me to do Fair Isle with cotton, but ... why not??

    Good on Heidi for choosing and grouping the colours - they look great together.

  3. My girls have never stopped loving hand crafted in whatever guise, knitted crocheted sewn and the eldest is 35. Love the fair isles and such a great idea to knit it in cotton, a winner for sure.

  4. She looks so beautiful and grown up in her new sweater. Fair Isle has scared me for a long time but now I am tempted to give it a try. Well done Jo, you are an amazing mom.

  5. What a beautiful jumper! What a lucky girl! I'm not a fan of fair isle knitting. I have done it, but I found it hard going. Best, Jane x

  6. That is so lovely, she chose a good selection of colours. It is wonderful that she asks you to knit for her. x

  7. This is amazing! A really lovely design and the colours look great.