two-handed fair isle is the best thing ever! I'm so excited-- my boss wanted me to work on creating a newsboy-style cap for the store. Moreover, she wanted me to do it in cotton--not the first fiber one would think of for something that really needs to hold its shape.
So the idea of colorwork came to me-- all the bad things about colorwork (it pulls the work in and makes it thicker) would be *good* things for this hat. My first approach was to do six stripes that would spiral and then follow the line of the crown decreases. This was fine, except that the amount of twisting involved is kind of annoying, so it was taking me forever to do. Plus, I had adventurously tried to do some of the ribbing Continental, which had whacked out my gauge and (again) taken forever.
So I frogged. And I decided that rather than worry about all the twisting (since I still wanted vertical spirals), I would do one-stitch stripes in between the six larger stripes. Moreover, rather than using a smaller needle for the brim ribbing (part of the problem with the whacked out gauge), I'd start the colorwork along the brim, which would pull in the rib more naturally. It doesn't have much stretch, but since it's not an over-the-ears hat, whatever.
Two handed colorwork is a godsend. I can now fly along switching colors without dropping and picking up strands, without ever getting my yarns tangled, and without copious amounts of swearing. It's so damn cool. Plus, because you're carrying both yarns, the strands at the inside lie nice right where they're supposed to-- no too-tight loops or giant gaping strands.
So it's now my mission in life to design things that require two-handed colorwork, yet do not have reindeers in them. Anywhere. Starting with this hat=)
For the store, it will be called the Candy Striped Newsboy Cap. Privately, I'm calling it the Candyass Newsie-- cause who loves a challenge (like learning fair isle) more than a gay journalist?