April 09, 2021
Knitted shawls - what's your favourite type? They’re the perfect knitted accessory for Spring whether you like to knit delicate lace to wrap around your neck or a more textured cable shawl. We love these versatile accessories that allow us to express our creativity without having to worry about fit. Having a knitted shawl on the needles also feels perfect for Spring - a changeable season where we all need something light yet warm. A shawl even works as something snuggly for a newborn baby gift and baby shawls always seem to be a high customer priority this time of year. Whatever your best loved shawl, we've got options for you!
For many makers a knitted shawl is an ideal project to make the most of a precious, luxurious skein picked up on travels, or gifted by a friend. A shawl holds memories while you’re making more.
Are you all about bright and bold knitted shawls? Or maybe you look for that pop of colour to lift your outfit. (We just love a neutral shawl with a little peek of colour!) Shawls are also a great way to play with colour combinations, whether you like stripes, holding different colours together to create marled effects, or even strong graphic colour blocking.
For a strong pop of colour, and the ideal project for showcasing that gorgeous skein of hand dyed yarn that’s been calling to you, we love Ishbel. In a bright colour, the Ishbel shawl is truly striking, and a fantastic addition to both casual and more formal outfits. It comes in a range of sizes too so you can make the most of every inch of yarn. (Well almost, we wouldn’t recommend that you risk running out while binding off…!)
Fornjót is a versatile option if you’re just looking for a graphic shawl that would work with just a little pop of colour. The Fornjót shawl looks amazing when worked up in a neutral yarn, something many of us have in our stashes, with a bright contrast. Using leftovers for the colour pop is a great way to test yourself with a new to you colour combinations too.
For stripes, Mareel is the perfect canvas for using up all those bits of different colours of yarn that you know combine beautifully, but don’t seem enough for a whole project. Pair them up with a main shawl colour and create something amazing! Also, remember those baby shawls? Mareel is a customer favourite.
Perhaps you like a swoop of a hug, textured and chunky to throw around your neck on cold evenings? It might be Springtime but there’s still plenty of chilly air around! A cosy knitted shawl is the perfect accessory for those sudden cold breezes - it’s easy to bunch them up around your neck when needed, or wear them a little looser for when the sun comes out. They’re also really satisfying and fun to knit!
One of our favourite cosy designs is Llawenydd, a gorgeous wool shawl with an intuitive and addictive cable pattern. Cables are a great way to add texture and warmth to your shawl as they trap air in all those little textured pockets of stitches making a very snuggly accessory. The great thing with the Llawenydd shawl design is that you begin at the long edge and gradually decrease. This way of shaping a shawl is almost universally loved, as it each row gets faster and faster, meaning lots of cosy warmth without a marathon slog at the end when you want it the most.
Willowbank is great option too to get that ultimate cosy-factor, in a relaxing and straightforward knit. It’s a large semi-circular shawl that doubles as a stealth blanket, featuring smooshy garter stitch, lovely lace and strong vertical lines.
When we think of knitted shawls often the first thing we imagine is something delicate, and with good reason. There are so many designs and types of lace shawl, from simple and repetitive lace stitches to more intricate patterns. Lace shawls range from beginner projects through to more complex and intricate designs that you’ll definitely need to concentrate on! They’re also perfect for Spring through Summer, giving a light and delicate extra layer just when you need it, and they’re easy to slip into a bag for those unexpected fresh breezes.
Marin is light and delicate, with long points and shape that curves gently round your neck. As a bonus it’s also reversible and symmetrical, so there’s no need to worry about spotting your gift recipient wearing it inside out! Unusually for something so light there’s no lace - the whole shawl is knit from side to side using simple stitch patterns and shaping techniques.
For something with a little more lace, the Caer Idris shawl is long, asymmetric and elegant - a perfect finish to the simplest Spring outfits. The length makes it easy to toss around your neck and the points along one edge look good however they settle.
Knitted shawls are the perfect canvas to master lace stitches, unusual constructions or detailed shaping.
True knitted lace is something knitters are often nervous to try, with patterning on right side and wrong side rows. It really is worth effort and creates stunning lace patterns, just make sure you block it well to show off your work! Lunna Voe would be a great choice to try this out with clear sections to work through and some lovely squishy garter stitch as a reward at the end!
If unusual constructions are your thing, then Phobos is a geometric, modularly worked wrap that makes the most of humble stitches. It begins with a square worked in the round, with different sized modular sections joined from picked up stitches. It sounds confusing, but comes together easily with minimum fuss. You’ll definitely have fun with this one, and create a gorgeous wrap that you can wrap round and round to ward off any Spring chills.
So, what knitted shawl will you make for Spring? If this has got you feeling inspired to add to your shawl collection, or perhaps to try out a new kind, you can find our range of shawl loveliness here.
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December 09, 2021
Learn brioche with the free Daniel's Hat pattern
Tombreck - a free chevron beanie pattern
Working the brioche neck detail on the Polwarth sweater
Decorative Channel Island Cast-on
3 Easy Stretchy Bind-offs (p2tog bind-off; k2togtbl, k1 bind-off; Jeny's surprisingly stretchy bind-off)
Tubular Bind-off for brioche stitch
Paired increase methods compared
How to work into double yarn overs
Brioche stitch double decreases
How to Knit in the round using Magic Loop
How to Knit in the round using DPNs
Avoiding ears when binding off
Tighter purl stitches for neater cables and ribbing
Cabling without a cable needle
Understanding "continue in pattern"
Joining the body and sleeves on a seamless bottom up sweater
How to pick a garment without a model for you (specifically addresses finding garment patterns when your gender identity isn't represented and the styles you want to knit might not be sized to fit your body)
How does ease affect inclusive size ranges?
Identifying and fixing mistakes in lace knitting
Getting started with stranded colourwork
Understanding colour dominance
Working stranded colourwork over small circumferences
Decreases in stranded colourwork
Holding the yarn for stranded colourwork
Ladderback Jacquard (a neat way to deal with long floats)
Cabling without a cable needle
Cabling without a cable needle on the wrong side
How to knit cabled decreases
Closed ring cable increases and decreases
How to work brioche stitch in the round
How to begin your first large cross stitch project
How to finish a cross stitch project with an embroidery hoop frame
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