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Getting Started: Intarsia Knitting

Jan 11, 2013

Is intarsia knitting on your Knitter's Resolution List? If so, here's a great tutorial about how to get started: Intarsia Knitting Tutorial


P.S. Do you have any tips for intarsia knitting? Share them with us in the comments!

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PatW@18 wrote
on Jan 14, 2013 1:25 PM

I have been knitting Kaffe Fassett's patterns for over 20yrs.  When I have a very complicated intarsia pattern such as his, I do a  lot of prep work before I start knitting.  As his patterns often have 15-19 colors, I make a sandwich baggie for each color.  I label each baggie with a square of paper with the color number and the chart symbol on it.  I then fill each baggie with bobbins of the appropriate color yarn.  I have also learned to enlarge the knitting graft to at least 150% so I don't go blind reading the chart.

Once I start knitting it can go very fast for whenever i need to tie on a new color, the bobbin is already made and waiting in it's baggie.  I have met Kaffe a few times and he demonstrated how to work in the tail of a new tie on as you knit so when you are done there are no loose ends to weave in.

This is a lot of pre-preparation I know but once you do it, it is done for the lenght of the project.  It also helps when you have to put your knitting away for the day to have all the colors sorted in baggies.  

I hope this helps.

on Jan 14, 2013 6:30 AM

Thanks so much for the informative post! Colorwork is one of my new years resolutions so intarsia will have to figure in at some point!

raider28 wrote
on Jan 13, 2013 9:06 PM

Can you use intarsia when knitting a hat in the round?  I love intarsia and am excited to try it.  Wanted to put my husbands college logo on the hat using this technique.  Thanks so much for your help.  Deborah

on Jan 12, 2013 11:22 AM

It would be helpful if you'd included a photo of the back of the work as well as the front.  If you can find an early Kaffe Fassett knitting book, he's got lots of photos on both intarsia and Fair Isle techniques, as well as quick and easy ways to 'lose' the extra yarn at the back of the piece.  

Ronieaa wrote
on Jan 12, 2013 9:37 AM

Your right!!! This is on my Resolution List. I love this article, it has gotten me excited to get the needles out and start to play.  Your timing is perfect.  I love your blogs, so much information and fun to read.. Thanks for such a great newsletter... I enjoy very much.. Ronie

beaudoin16 wrote
on Jan 11, 2013 10:43 PM

Just as I was trying to remember how to change colors, I found the answer in your email!!! Just amazing!!!! Thank you so much! I like to read theory on knitting because I learn a lot of new related to knitting vocabulary and since I'm French Canadian, it helps me a lot when I read a pattern in English!!! Keep up the good work!!! <3

gmchase wrote
on Jan 11, 2013 9:36 PM


This is not a comment, but a question.  In the description above, Leigh Radford says to "Insert the right needle into the next stitch as if to knit. Leaving a 4" (10-cm) tail of the new color, work the stitch with the new color" before placing the strand of old color over the strand of new when changing colors.  But Kathleen says to "drop the old strand of yarn over the new strand before you knit the first stitch with the new yarn."  These seem contradictory.  Can someone help?  I've never tried intarsia knitting.