The Season's Best Fair Isle
Each year, we're alerted to the approaching holiday season by certain telltale signs that seem to appear out of nowhere--gift displays of shaving kits and sock sets at the department stores, boxes of tree ornaments and spools of garland spilling out onto the aisles at the local drugstores, and that unmistakable knit pattern that infiltrates the pages of all those specialty retailer catalogs (you know the ones). Fair Isle is a knitting technique that specializes in creating--usually very intricate--repeated bands of multicolor patterns. And for whatever reason, people really like wearing this print around the holidays. It's sometimes snowflakes and deer in traditional seasonal greens and reds and other times it's geometric shapes in bolder, more contemporary colors. But no matter what, it winds up on everything from socks to sweaters. And each season, I have to admit, I feel compelled to take advantage of this yearly event and add just a bit of Fair Isle to help get me into the holiday spirit. Here are ten of my favorites for this year's merry measure.