01 June 2015

Re-released pattern: Thistle Leaf Shawl

In all the excitement of the Trunk Show, I forgot to (re)share the Thistle Leaf Shawl with you. It's a lovely pattern (and project) that warranted new photographs and a layout tweak, when I realized that it was a member of the Unicorn Tapestries, vol. one*.

Thistle Leaf Shawl $7 on Ravelry (no account necessary)

Don't you love this kind of project? One skein of a lovely fingering weight yarn and one lace chart that has enough going on to keep your attention. Thistle Leaf Shawl is a top-down shawl, which means you begin by making a little garter-stitch tab (it tops the center line of yarnover increases so that there is a lovely straight line of 2-stitch garter stitch along the entire top edge of the shawl). While this little tab may feel a tiny bit fiddly when you begin, it's over in a snap and makes the shawl a bit more perfect. I thoroughly explain the wee tab, and then you're off to the races!

There are plenty of rows of "mindless" stockinette stitch to begin, while you're still head-over-heels in love with your yarn (Julie Asselin's Milis in the Confiture colorway shown here). Then, just when you might consider straying to another project, the fun of the lace begins! Clearly, I am quite fond of this lace (Thistle Leaf Pullover, anyone?), and you should be, too :) Thistle Leaf is a Victorian variant on your basic leaf lace, but with more ... frills. Isn't it pretty? And don't worry - I've provided the lace pattern in both charted and written formats, so anyone can create their own Thistle Leaf Shawl.

Because this is an extra-wide triangle, you will increase four times on the front (knit) rows - left, right, and twice at the center line - and twice more on the back (purl) - left and right again. This produces what some call a "heart-shaped" shawl, and I will have to find the proper time/place to lay this shawl out for you to see that effect. The ends, with all those increases on the left and right sides tend to curl back in on themselves (just a little) as you come to the end of the Thistle Leaf edging. I love those extra-long ends when I wear this shawl bandit-style (triangle point in front, ends wrapped around the neck to come back to the front).

Size/Finished Measurements 
Width: 52 inches/132.08cm
Depth: 19 inches/48.26cm

Julie Asselin Milis {100% Merino; 475 yds/434m per 115 gram skein}; color: Confiture; 1 skein
US6/4.0mm 29-inch circular needle
Stitch markers
Tapestry needle

20 stitches x 32 rows = 4 inches/10cm in Stockinette Stitch

Skills Needed 
Casting on
Binding off
Reading charts (written instructions also provided)

Test knitting: knittygal, sallen2849, sanita60, knitterloreen, seshetsuten, Katinka
Technical editing: choochooknits

Pattern is professionally formatted (by me!) with charts and written-out versions of the lace pattern to ensure you have everything you need to create your own beautiful Thistle Leaf Shawl. Those of you lovely knitters who purchased this pattern when it was originally released should have received a message from Ravelry that the updated version of the pattern is now in your library.

This pattern is part of a bundle of four inspired by The Unicorn Tapestries* at The Cloisters in New York City. Thistle Leaf Shawl was inspired by the magnificent tapestry known as The Unicorn in Captivity, where the Unicorn lounges amidst mille-fleurs, including a single white thistle just in front of the right side of his fence.

I hope you enjoy this pattern! I have worn mine a lot, usually bandit-style, to keep my neck warm, add a bit of color to my outfit, and spice up my black v-neck winter coat. Now that Spring/Summer is upon us, I plan to wear it more as a shawl when nights are cooler - it fits easily into my purse.

Thanks for stopping by, and happy knitting!

*Use code unicornone to purchase all four patterns in the Unicorn Tapestries, vol. one bundle for the price of three!

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