I love this shawl.

I mean LOVE IT. I needed a simple pattern to test the new sari silk yarn I will be carrying in the shop. I remember the first sari silk skein I ever saw in the yarn Shop in the French Quarter in New Orleans. I had to have it. It was pricey and I did not care. It sat in my stash for months before I decided to make a simple drop stitch scarf with my 2 skeins. I have always been drawn ti this stuff. I even get the remnant sari silk fiber to card into my batts for yarn. I will be carrying this fiber as well. A glitch in shipping from my supplier lead me to a new supplier and access to some incredible yarns.

This pattern is base on Elizabeth Zimmerman’s Pi Theory Shawl which was published in Knitter’s Almanac. And this is really not so much a pattern as it is a theory. You can work it with any weight yarn and because of the large sections without increases, you can insert any stitch pattern or sets of stitch patterns. A very easy formula to design with. I however am not a big fan of full circle shawls, but i do love half circle shawls. They seem to stay on your shoulders better. This pattern actually knits up to be a little fuller than a half circle, so it actually hugs your neck and shoulders. For the sari silk shawl I worked the pattern rows in garter stitch. The yarn is very textural and colorful, so i did not feel any pattern would be necessary. I wanted the yarn to be the feature.

Half Circle Shawl

Cast on 5 stitches
row 1: knit all stitches.
row 2: Work increase rows as follows: *K1, yo* repeat to the last st, k1.
row 3: knit
row 4: work another increase row
row 5&6: knit
row 7: work increase row

From here, work an increase row after knitting double the number of pattern rows between the last 2 increase rows.
Since between increase rows 4 and 7 there are 2 pattern rows, we will knit double the number of pattern rows–4 pattern rows before we knit another increase row. Then knit 8 pattern rows before increasing; 16 pattern rows, an increase row; 32 pattern rows, an increase row; 64 pattern rows… continue until the shawl is as big as you’d like. BO, weave in ends

A word about sari silk…

I have seen a lot of mixed reviews about this yarn. And true it is fussy, unpredictible, and both delicate and hard at the same time. There are always knots, breaks and maybe even vegetable matter. No two skeins are alike and chances are you are never really sure of the yardage you actually have. This yarn is deceptively bulky. You may be tempted to use a smaller needle that you should. It is best knit with a bigger needle to give your fabric drape and the stitched room to showcase the texture of the yarn. Normally I am a stickler for weaving in ends, but in this case I think this yarn works better when knotted. Trust me I never would say it for any other yarn. Just go with it. It is a rustic yarn and the dangling ends will be fine with your finished fabric and probably hold better than trying to weave them in. Finally the big key to this yarn…serious steam blocking. I was floored how the fabric transformed from a stiff, ropey texture, to silky soft and drapey with steam. Take the time to steam it …absolutely necessary and SOOOO worth it.

I love my shawl. It is light enough to wear this spring, and goes with everything in my closet. I get so many compliments on this thing.

I am also working on a Clapotis made out of my new banana silk yarn. It works up very much in the same way as the Sari Silk Yarn, but shinier and less hairy.

Both of these yarns will be available at urbangypz.com and the etsy shop May 9th.