Knitty: little purls of wisdom
Space Cadet Creations
beauty shot


By day I am a high school Chemistry and Math teacher. I see knit shapes in the molecules and crystals that I draw on the chalkboard, and consider the type of decreases that would allow me to knit these bond angles. On weekends, I sit at home working out the algebra of x repeats of 12 plus seven totaling a multiple of nine. . . This is how knitters live: grafting together our converging passions.

The result is this tantalizing shawl with a crystal shape (or lace pattern, if you will,) a little like the chemical compound lutetium tantalate, LuTaO4.

This shawl is a deep crescent shape with a circular opening for the neck. The design allows it to be slipped over your shoulders like a cardigan, without needing to be held or pinned. It has enough stockinette to be a quick knit, while maintaining a shoulder-framing panel of lace. A bit of cashmere in the yarn provides a lovely drape. It's equally suitable for a dressy evening out or a sweet summer tea party.

spacer model: Lindsey Freeman
spacer photos: Johnathan Freeman
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Width: 49 inches
Depth: 12.5 inches



spacer Tanis Fiber Arts [70% superwash merino, 20% cashmere, 10% nylon; 400 yd/365 m per 115g skein]; color: Pink Grapefruit; 1 skein
Note: The shawl used all but 1yd of the skein; for safety's sake, you may wish to buy a second skein.

Recommended needle size
[always use a needle size that gives you the gauge listed below -- every knitter's gauge is unique]
spacer 1 32-inch US #4/3.5mm circular needle

spacer Yarn needle
spacer stitch markers: 2 removable, 10 regular
spacer US 4-E/3.5mm crochet hook (for the bind-off)



22 sts/39 rows = 4 inches in stockinette stitch, after blocking
24 sts/20 rows = 4 inches in pattern stitch, after blocking


[Knitty's list of standard abbreviations and techniques can be found here.]

To make the body a circular shape, the shawl increases 4 stitches every right side row -- at shawl edges and lace section edges -- and 2 stitches every wrong side row, at shawl edges only. In the last two rows before the border, the right side increases 8 stitches and the wrong side increases 6 stitches.

If you wish to adjust the size of the shawl, you can alter the repeats of the twenty-row lace pattern, but note that the increase rows before the border would then also have to be adjusted. For the border to line up with the lace in the panel, there must be a multiple of 12 plus 3 stitches between the shawl edge and the first marker for the lace panel. The border chart may then be used.

The charts for this pattern are very large. Each fits on a letter-sized page.
Click below and print each resulting page.

Chart 1 | Chart 2
Note: In Chart 1, Rows 11, 21 and 31 require a marker adjustment: move the markers out towards shawl edge by one stitch.

Garter Tab Set-up
CO 3 st. K 6 rows, slipping first st of each row.

At end of last row, turn work 90 degrees clockwise and pick up and k 3 st along one side. Turn work 90 degrees clockwise and pick up and k 3 sts long CO edge. 9 sts.

Shawl Body
Row 1 [RS]: Sl 1, k2 (yo, k1) 3 times, yo, k3. 13 sts.

Row 2 [WS]: Sl 1, k2, yo, p2, pm, p3, pm, p2, yo, k3.

Row 3 [RS]: Sl 1, k2, yo, k to next marker, work Chart 1, knit to last 3 sts, yo, k3. 4 sts increased.

Row 4 [WS]: Sl 1, k2, yo, p to next marker, work Chart 1, p to last 3 sts, yo, k3. 2 sts increased.

Repeat Rows 3-4, increasing the number of stitch pattern repeats as appropriate, until row 98 is complete. 303 sts.

Next row [RS]: Sl 1, k2, yo, kfb, knit to one st before next marker, kfb, work Chart 1, kfb, knit to last 4 sts; kfb, yo, k3. 8 sts increased; 311 sts total.
As you work this next row, remove markers.

Next row [WS]: Sl 1, k2, sm, yo, pbf; purl to 1 st before next marker, pbf, purl to next marker, pbf, purl to last 4 sts, pbf, yo, k3. 6 sts increased; 317 sts total.

Shawl Border
Note: garter edge has ended, and chart is worked all the way across the row.

Row 1 [RS]: Work Chart 2, working repeat A 7 times, repeat B 10 times, and repeat C 7 times.

Row 2 [WS]: Work Chart 2 across as set.

Continue in pattern until chart is complete. 319 sts.

Bind off using a crochet hook in the following manner: Slip the first 2 st off the left needle purlwise onto the crochet hook; draw a loop up on the hook and pull it through those sts; chain 5.
*Sl next 3 sts to crochet hook, draw a loop up on the hook and pull it through those sts; chain 5; slip 1 st to hook, and pull a loop through; chain 5. Repeat from * until 2 st remain on left needle. Slip those 2 sts to the crochet hook and pull a loop through. Pull a loop through the last stitch and cut yarn.


Weave in ends.
Steam or wet block, carefully shaping the crescent. making sure to pin out the loops of the border.


Lindsey Freeman is a science teacher and color enthusiast. She knits primarily in merino but reports that cashmere still holds an irresistible sway.

Find her on Ravelry.