Fair Isle Knitting and Design: an introduction

Detail of cover of Fair Isle Knitting and Design by Nicki Merrall

Fair Isle Knitting book

I’m excited to show you the cover of my book, Fair Isle Knitting and Design.

Fair Isle Knitting and Design is a comprehensive guide to stranded colourwork as practised by the knitters of Fair Isle and Shetland. It is for knitters who wish to learn or improve their stranded colourwork technique as well as those who would like to create their own patterns and colour combinations.

The book includes:

  • The development of Fair Isle knitting.
  • A collection of Fair Isle patterns and motifs.
  • Exercises to develop a sense of colour and apply colour theory to Fair Isle knitting.
  • Detailed step-by-step guides for the techniques used in Fair Isle knitting.
  • Five original designs.
  • Guidance on adapting existing Fair Isle projects and designing your own projects.

Since last summer, when I finished writing, my text and images have been through many processes to turn them into a book that you can hold. These include copy-editing, layout, proof-reading, indexing, cover design, and finally printing. The advance copies arrived mid-March and the rest were sent by sea from India. Publication of my book was planned for 6 April; I ordered 50 copies to sign and sell myself: I started to feel excited!

However, these are not normal times. Firstly, there was a delay in the books arriving at the distributor, so The Crowood Press delayed publication to 4 May. Meanwhile, the distributors and book stores closed. Now the publishers plan to publish Fair Isle Knitting and Design in early June. I know this is disappointing: many of you would like to read my book while we are in lockdown. It’s something to look forward to!

Pre-ordering Fair Isle Knitting and Design

Recently, I showed my Fair Isle knitting book to friends at a virtual knitting group. The following day I received several excited messages from people keen to pre-order. I shall take preorders when the book distributors let me know that my copies are on their way to me from the warehouse. If you would like to be the first to hear when you can pre-order a signed copy, please sign up via the link below.


Fair Isle Knitting and Design is now available to order!