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  1. #1
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    Default Fair Isle & Nordic sweaters

    Good day to everyone. I am somewhat confused as to the difference between a Fair Isle and Nordic knitted wool sweater. Is there a difference between the two? I ask such a question because I saw pictures of BB Fair Isle and Nordic sweaters, and they seem to have similar knitting. Perhaps someone on here can enlighten me as to what differentiates the two. Another question, are Fair Isle sweaters trad?

    Cheers,
    FQD

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    The knitting technique is the same for both. They use a maximum of two colors per row and the unused yarn is strung loose on the inside of the fabric. I can't remember how many times I've caught my watch on the yarns while putting a Fair Isle sweater on. The difference is mainly in colors and patterns. Nordic sweaters are typically two colors only and have large patterns with snowflakes and such. Fair Isle sweaters have tighter, more intricate patterns and many more colors.

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    I wonder if the wool isn't different as well? The Nordic type sweaters that I've most often seen are quite heavyweight compared with a Fair Isle sweater. And then there's the Icelandic (http://www.nordicstore.net/icelandic...s_1273_ctg.htm), which is a real beast. I used to have one of them from LLB back in the day.

    In my personal opinion the Fair Isles are a bit twee. I see them worn on British television and like them very much, with the tweed jacket and the tattersall shirt and the wellies and the Barbour, going out to the barn to inspect the pigs...but somehow I don't get out to inspect the pigs that often here in Philadelphia. Brooks sure is carrying a lot of them.

    I think the Nordic sweaters, with the snowflakes and all that, are more difficult to pull off, unless you are a tall blond lantern jawed lacrosse player from UVM spending winter break in a ski lodge...

  4. #4
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    What is the best place to buy one? I should qualify that if reasonably priced. I've done a few searches on Google, but have been overwhelmed. Surely there must be some nice grandmother somewhere on the internet selling her handmade sweaters?
    PLEASE NOTE that I'm looking for 36-short 3/2 suits, blazers and sport jackets. I'm also looking for a pair of 30-inch or 31-inch Black Watch tartan trousers.

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    Dale of Norway is a known brand.

    I kinda like the Moods of Norway take on them:



    Gant also have some good quality offerings.

    If buying such a sweater, don't be deterred by snowflakes. They are traditional.

    Theres nothing as pointless as a Norwegian sweater without pattern or color mix. Very untraditional.

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    You can try etsy for hand knit sweaters, but they won't be cheap. Scouring ebay will also yield good results, if you structure your search to find "hand knit" "vintage" sweaters.

    Of course, you'll be buying a fair isle pattern sweater, not a real Fair Isle sweater. Fair Isle sweaters are made on Fair Isle and are not inexpensive. I found a real Fair Isle on eBay a few years ago; it's the warmest, most beautiful sweater vest that I own.

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    Spirit of Shetland offers beautiful Fair Isle type sweaters for a good price. They are not true handknits from Fair Isle, which are very costly and hard to find, but they are knit to order (by hand, on a frame) on the Shetland Islands, of true shetland wool.
    Friends! Trust not the heart of that man for whom old clothes are not venerable. -Carlyle, Sartor Resartus

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Rambler View Post
    Spirit of Shetland offers beautiful Fair Isle type sweaters for a good price. They are not true handknits from Fair Isle, which are very costly and hard to find, but they are knit to order (by hand, on a frame) on the Shetland Islands, of true shetland wool.
    I'd say those prices are quite reasonable. The ones I saw on etsy were anywhere from $350 to $700 for a made to order sweater with wool from who-knows-where.

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    Last edited by C. Sharp; September 28th, 2011 at 11:09.

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    Fair Isle=boring

    Nordic=cool

    *sulks*

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    So would it be okay to layer a Nordic sweater underneath a Harris Tweed sport coat? I suppose I am asking how would/should one wear a Nordic sweater?

    Cheers,
    FQD

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    Those Anderson sweaters look great, CS, thanks for the link. Excellent prices for seamless knits.
    Friends! Trust not the heart of that man for whom old clothes are not venerable. -Carlyle, Sartor Resartus

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    Quote Originally Posted by Future_Quant_Deji View Post
    So would it be okay to layer a Nordic sweater underneath a Harris Tweed sport coat? I suppose I am asking how would/should one wear a Nordic sweater?

    Cheers,
    FQD
    Depends on the tweed, I'd say, nothing too busy. Also, it would have to be a roomy jacket, Nordic sweaters are fairly bulky.
    Friends! Trust not the heart of that man for whom old clothes are not venerable. -Carlyle, Sartor Resartus

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bjorn View Post
    Fair Isle=boring

    Nordic=cool

    *sulks*
    Fair Isle = cool

    Nordic = for women
    "Do you know what you look like before you go out?"

  16. #15
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    O'Connell's also recently put up some fair isle sweaters.
    "I'll make you again the best Sneetches on beaches, and all it will cost you is ten dollars eaches."

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    Quote Originally Posted by roman totale XVII View Post
    Fair Isle = cool

    Nordic = for women
    Fair Isle = for Gumbys


    Nordic = since 1400s

    Fair Isle, Norwegian, Icelandic, Faroe, it's almost the same kind of sweaters. They're all Nordic sweaters. Check the location of the Fair Isles.

    I find the Norwegian styles to be a tad less frumpy in color than the Fair Isles. Would personally go for Moods version since they're fun and a tad thinner, or so I've heard.

    When wearing a Nordic sweater, whether fair isles, Norwegian etc you will look like you are wearing a Nordic sweater. Own it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hardline_42 View Post
    I'd say those prices are quite reasonable. The ones I saw on etsy were anywhere from $350 to $700 for a made to order sweater with wool from who-knows-where.
    That's way too expensive for me.
    PLEASE NOTE that I'm looking for 36-short 3/2 suits, blazers and sport jackets. I'm also looking for a pair of 30-inch or 31-inch Black Watch tartan trousers.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Future_Quant_Deji View Post
    So would it be okay to layer a Nordic sweater underneath a Harris Tweed sport coat? I suppose I am asking how would/should one wear a Nordic sweater?

    Cheers,
    FQD
    I suppose but it would help if you were also living on the North Pole. That makes me sweat just thinking about it.
    CMDC's "Tie Grab Bags"--Only $7 per tie.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CMDC View Post
    I suppose but it would help if you were also living on the North Pole. That makes me sweat just thinking about it.
    I don't think there's any weather where Nordic sweater plus HT would be good except for the Scottish highlands.

    If it's cold, windy and frequently damp, then sure. But a thinner Scottish wool sweater would be better under a HT.

    The Nordic sweater is the equivalent of the tweed jacket, so layering them is a bit excessive. And if you're layering for really cold weather, it's better to layer clothes specifically made for layering.

    To my mind, it's either nordic sweater or jacket. Unless it's a thinner more modern version, where you get the color/patterns but not the bulk thickness of the original. Which I like, but it's not how they are traditionally made and worn.

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    Quote Originally Posted by roman totale XVII View Post
    Nordic = for women
    Ridiculous! Go to Norway and see.
    Last edited by williamson; September 30th, 2011 at 01:12.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bjorn View Post
    The Nordic sweater is the equivalent of the tweed jacket, so layering them is a bit excessive...To my mind, it's either nordic sweater or jacket.
    I agree a thousandfold. I have an Icelandic sweater which is almost too warm even on its own.

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    Some nice stuff from Gant:




    At tad expensive at SEK 1600, but then our VAT is 25%

  24. #23
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    Those sweaters are quite nice, I'll say. Are they on the Gant website? If so, I ought to take a look.Cheers,FQD

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    I found them in store in MalmŲ, Sweden, but they should be available.

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    I've always wanted a version of that reindeer sweater. PRL makes a nice one.

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