Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Fair Isle Sheep

Having done the baa baa blackwork sheep card earlier in the year I was eager to have a play with the design. I have quite a few friends who collect sheep so it was a good opportunity to personalise and adapt the design. For a friend's birthday I decided I should try and make a "Fair Isle" inspired blackwork sheep. I love Fair Isle knitting and it is something I see done with ease at the craft group I attend. As somebody who can barely knit I am envious of this skill. I decided that blackwork has the consistency to give the idea of the pattern.

I realised that the sheep were a little small to get a full pattern in so instead of doing 3 and a caption as in the original design, I decided to make a big one twice the size. I simply doubled the size on some graph paper and then set to work. I wanted quite a bold colour pallet without it being too bright so I started with a burnt orange and autumnal red and took it from there. I opted for simple blackwork rows and boarders as there was not a lot of space for elaborate designs. I managed to design it so there was two rows of each pattern. This helped give the feel of repetition. and enhanced the Fair Isle "feel".

I was worried that using black against it would seem a bit harsh and dramatic so I opted for a very dark grey as not to detract from the sheeps "jumper".

"Fair Isle" Blackwork sheep.

I was really pleased with the result and thought it was a fun way to personalise a card. I loved stitching in multicoloured blackwork and I would be tempted to try more fair Isle inspired stitching in the future. I think the technique would lend itself well to stockings for Christmas cards too.

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