view basket

Variation on a Theme

  • 3683 Loading
  • 2
  • »

parasol shawlette


Variations are surely one of the most entertaining & educational artistic practices of all time. When you’re familiar with your piece, and have already done the hard graft of choosing your theme, you’re free to play & tinker, and indulge. My attempts are humble, but here is what a master composer can do with a simple tune (perhaps the simplest tune?). Listen while you read on…

Have you noticed that shallow shawls* seem to be all the rage in the knitting world recently? I simply couldn’t resist. The Parasol Shawlette is a variation of the Parasol Stole: narrower, and with a single border for the ribbing section. The central section, instead of being straight, makes a gentle curve, with the ribbing flowing easily in & out of the decrease “bells”. I have to admit, there are several aspects of this variation that I find particularly satisfying:

  • The asymmetry is a natural result of the repetition. What I mean is, though the exact same lace pattern is repeated at either end, it looks asymmetrical, but not unattractively so.
  • I find the shawl shaping method particularly elegant (though I do say so myself). As the decreases grow, the shawl narrows. In fact, this is the only tweak you need to make to shape the shawl. The decrease method (which I showed you in this video), remains exactly the same.
  • It’s a nice balance of mindless knitting & lace.
  • It knits up in a weekend. Who is above the lure of instant gratification? Not me!

parasol shawlette

The lace sections at either end look pretty when you use the shawlette as a scarf, but they also function as ties if you’d rather wear it around your shoulders.

spring steal

Knitting Pattern Ebook

I would like to say that spring has stolen up on me, but I can’t remember a more dull, drizzly or dreary April! These slightly blurry shots were the best I could get, and it’s chilly enough right now that I’m wearing the shawlette around my neck as I type. Still, I’m all excitement for my first pattern bundle! Buying the Stole & Shawlette together will save you £1, which you can will spend on yarn. :)

let’s do it!

parasol shawlette

“Spend the afternoon. You can’t take it with you.” – Annie Dillard

That might be the tagline of my spring collection. I know some people think sitting & knitting as far from “living” as you can get (that Edvard Munch quotation comes to mind), but where spending days are concerned – and spend them we must – knitting in the afternoon, quietly, contentedly, must come close to bliss. I would be honoured if you were to spend your afternoon with me & my patterns. Which is why…

Stole & Shawlette KAL

Please invite your friends/readers also! Here’s the code to place on your blog:

<a href=""><img src=""/></a>

(You can also link directly to the Ravelry Laylock Designs Group, if you’d prefer.)

Are you also participating in 11 shawls in 2011? I am! You will be glad to know that both the Parasol Stole & Shawlette qualify (in terms of yardage & style) for the challenge. So that puts my current count at 5 and a half.

parasol shawlette

I hope it’s sunny where you are, lovely knitters & that your yarns are colourful enough to put the spring blossoms to shame. Have a gorgeous weekend! xx

parasol shawlette

* Every time I say “shallow shawls”, I get that Cole Porter song stuck in my head: “In shallow shoals English soles do it / Goldfish in the privacy of bowls do it / Let’s do it, let’s fall in love”.

Some pattern specs…

‣ Knit flat in one piece,
‣ in DK or lace-weight yarn,
‣ with lace at either end,
‣ and a central section of
‣ bordered by lace edging.
‣ 2 balls Nako Nakolen
[100gr; 50/50 wool/acrylic;
210m / 230yds; 5090 Lilac
or approx. 400m /
437yds of DK-weight
‣ OR approx.
350m / 383yds of lace-
weight yarn.
‣ Gauge isn’t critical, but It’s
important that the fabric
isn’t too tight, so that the
lace looks open and clear
when blocked.
DK-weight stole:
‣ 12sts / 20 rows
‣ over 10cm / 4in
‣ in blocked ribbing.
1 lace repeat is 17cm x
9.5cm / 6.7in x 3.7in at
widest points after
Lace-weight stole:
‣ 20sts / 23 rows
‣ over 10cm / 4in
‣ in blocked ribbing.
1 lace repeat is 13cm x
6.5cm / 5.1in x 2.6in at
widest points after blocking.
‣ 4.5mm (US 7) straight needles for both versions,
‣ or size suitable to yarn.
‣ Finished size will depend
on blocking.
‣ The DK
sample was approx:
28cm x 180cm / 11in x
‣The lace-weight
sample was approx: 25cm x
136cm / 10in x 54in.


  1. Katie says:

    This is gorgeous! I’m in the process of knitting it in fingering weight yarn and am really enjoying how it’s turning out.

    I looked ahead in the pattern and realized that the end lace is reversed at the end of the shawlette. Do you know if it would work to knit backwards from row 14 to row 1 of the lace pattern, so the ends are identical?

  2. […] I was so excited that I cast on for a Ruskin right away, using some leftover yarn from my first Parasol Shawlette. There’s a very special baby girl who is to make her début in September, and hopefully […]

Your Favourites ❤

  • Your favorites will be here.