User:WillowW/Scarf and shawl design

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

Shawls and scarves are among the first projects attempted by a beginning knitter. This article summarizes various techniques for designing and making such garments. Although the article focuses on knitting, most considerations also carry over to shawls and scarves made from woven fabrics.

General considerations[edit]

Many considerations of sweater design also carry over to the design of scarves and shawls. In particular, three rules of thumb should be noted:

  • The only important goal is to design a garment that its recipient will want to wear. Therefore, the knitter should listen to the recipient's wishes and follow them, even if the knitter would prefer to make the design more colorful, more complex, etc.
  • In general, mistakes should be corrected as soon as they are noticed, even if it means ripping out dozens of carefully knitted rows. (Doing this serenely is good spiritual exercise.) Consciously keeping mistakes will often spoil the knitter's enjoyment of their gift. However, one mistake — the wabi — may be retained in the garment, to reflect its human origin.

Choosing the overall shape[edit]

A scarf is almost always a long, thin rectangle, since it is intended to wrap around the neck. A typical size is 6" across and 5' long.

By contrast, shawls come in a variety of shapes:

  • rectangular
  • triangular
  • folded square
  • trapezoidal
  • polygon
  • circular (yoke, cape)

Choosing the stitch type[edit]

Choosing the fabric grain[edit]


Other ornaments[edit]

  • Pockets
  • Ties
  • Colors


  • Schreier I and Kimmelstiel LJ. (2004) Exquisite little knits, Lark Books. ISBN 1-57990-536-6