What is a Fair Isle pattern design?
How did the traditional Fair Isle colours originate?
As Fair Isle design is traditionally knitted, these patterns have been developed in horizontal lines, usually using 2 colours per row, and not more than 4 colours for the whole garment. The yarn was always from the local sheep and the colours were chosen based on the natural dyes available on the island. So the yarn could be dyed Indigo, red and yellow, plus natural undyed yarns included dark grey, pale grey, brown, dark fawn and pale fawn.
How have we been inspired by traditional Fair Isle?
For our Aqua by Design Fair Isle design, we have taken these traditional guides as our inspiration developing rows of patterns including zig zag stripes and abstract lozenge shapes hexagons. We have a pattern repeat as this way we can print metres of fabric for soft furnishings. We have also created different colourways for you to choose from:
We print our design onto soft furnishings fabric that can be used for home interiors such as curtains, blinds, lampshades and cushions. We love bringing the knitwear patterns to home interiors as they are so colourful, giving a simple horizontal stripe interest, plus they create a cosy huggy feel to any room.
Fair Isle design in home interiors
This is a great room set showing how you can add our Fair Isle design to your bedroom, mixing it with other fabrics to create a warm, cosy Autumnal feeling bedroom. Fabrics used here include Fair Isle Teal on the top bedspread, Autumn Wildlife Ditzy on the bottom bedspread, Dark Teal Geometric Flag on the top cushion, and Highland Loch Teal on the back cushions.
About Fair Isle in Scotland, UK
Fair Isle designs and patterns originate from the island Fair Isle in Scotland, which lies 24 miles from Shetland, with a population of only 60 permanent residents. This small island is well known for the wildlife birds, rugged landscape and traditional crafts. It hasn’t actually been established why the women on the island started knitting in the designs that we now call Fair Isle, but it’s thought to be linked with the shipping trade from the Baltics.
Find out more: https://www.fairisle.org.uk/
Where to buy genuine Fair Isle Knitwear?
At Aqua by design, we just love all things Fair Isle. And if you do too, you can still buy traditional genuine knitwear from the islanders. Take a browse, and match your outfit with your interiors: