There are many free shawl knitting patterns on the Internet. Here are a few featuring less girly designs using simple knit stitches and open mesh lace.
Knitted shawls are popular because they are so versatile. To borrow a phrase from a famous knitter, “how can a shawl not fit?“.
But I find many of them too feminine and too much like grandmother’s fashion. Intricate lace, multi-colored. I prefer simple patterns in solid colors that can be worn in the office and look professional.
Here is a compilation of 5 hand knitted shawls that I think fit my criteria.
Compilation of Free Shawl Knitting Patterns
1. Westknits Boneyard by Stephen West
I find this understated triangular shawl knitting pattern intriguing, given that Stephen West is infamous for much more intricate designs.
I think it is a great pattern for a beloved variegated yarn. The design is quite simple and will let the colour changes shine.
It is a classic triangular shape with increases in the middle and edges. Increases are created using the M1L-and-M1R technique rather than the Yarn-Over technique. You can clearly see why. Yarn overs would have created 2 rows of eyelets along the spine and edge of the shawl which would have given it a different look.
The finished object doesn’t look very big. I thought it is more like a shawlette or rectangular scarf. Stephen, the designer, subsequently created a variation with an elongated wingspan.
2. Bolton Pass by Lisa Di Fruscia
Bolton Pass shawl combines 2 simple knit stitch textures: twisted rib and stockinette stitch. It is a full-sized triangular shawl. The triangle is created by casting 237 stitches and decreasing 1 stitch every 2 rows. That’s a lot of stitches to cast on. Not for the faint-hearted.
According to the designer, Lisa, it is inspired by the majestic pass that cuts through the valley of the Sutton Mountains in Quebec.
3. Afetos Shawl Knitting Pattern by Vera Augusto
I really like this pattern even with the multi-colors. It is an asymmetrical shawl featuring alternate rows of lace knitting and garter stitch ridges. It was lovely to knit and it knitted up surprisingly quick.
4. Reyna Open Mesh by Noora Laivola
Reyna is an asymmetrical shawl with alternate open mesh lace and garter stitch ridges. In a sense, it is similar to Afetos.
Originally worked in a variegated yarn, however, it would look stunning using a gradient colour yarn. Yarn weight and needle sizes are given in the pattern but not the gauge. I guess Noora didn’t think gauge was all that important for this pattern.
Hmm, Stephanie Pearl McPhee also said that same thing in the snowdrop shawl pattern.
5. Terrace Wrap by Purl Soho
An airy knitted wrap using the Dutch knitting stitch produces a garden trellis look. I also thought it looked like the back of a woven bistro chair.
The trellis pattern consists of a six-row repeat. I didn’t know what a Dutch knitting pattern is. Fortunately, the designer included a video of it in the pattern.
Purl Soho has many knitting patterns that are simple and classic. Do check them out.
6. SUGAR Mohair Shawl
The shape of Sugar Mohair shawl resembles a curvy Isosceles triangle. It starts at one of the corners, and the project grows diagonally by placing increases and decreases along the sides. Knitters who hate casting on too many stitches will find this project attractive.
It is knitted in one of my favourite stitch…garter. 🙂
The designer recommends using your leftover yarns. You can also use variegated yarns.