Shawl Style: Take fashion by the dangly bits

Sugared Violets shawl knit in one twisted tree knight bus escape

Sugared Violets shawl knit in one twisted tree knight bus escape


When I think of fall fashion, I think of knitted accessories (as any good knitter should). Cabled fingerless mitts knit in tweedy heathers, ethereal hazy lace knitted berets that catch the glow of the orange fall sun, and drapey lace shawls knit in accents of deep purple that tie your boots and and bag together so well that you feel like you've just stepped out of a magazine shoot. 

The problem that I hear from a lot of people these days is that they knit the shawls, but they don't know how to wear the shawls. Thousands of shawls are knit every year only to be unceremoniously dropped in a basket of knitted accessories never to be worn. You grab the mittens and occasionally a hat, but the shawls slowly start making their way to the bottom of the pile from which there is no return. 

Those of you who listen to knitting podcasts may have heard my co-host, Susie, and I talking about how to style shawls on our last episode (ep. 80) of Prairie Girls Knit and Spin. (For those of you who don't yet listen to knitting podcasts, you can find our free podcast on iTunes, through a podcast app on your phone or tablet, or Listen Here. Come give us a listen.) Consider the styling video below an addendum to our latest episode on styling shawls. 

We focused our talk on three shawl shapes: Long and skinny, triangle, and crescent shawls. While long and skinny shawls, such as the Midge Shawl by Odessa Reichel and Find a Penny by Lindsay Tabsh are quick and easy knits, they may not have the same impact as a larger shawl, but they are easy to wear. I just throw them over my shoulder as I would a scarf.  

Triangle shawls like the Tan House Brook Shawl by Jennifer Lassonde or The Age of Brass and Steam Kerchief by Orange Flower Yarn give you not only more options on how to wear them but are usually a quick and simple knit with great impact.

Crescent shawls encompass all the shawl shapes that swoop gracefully from one corner to the other. Sugared Violets by Rose Beck and Pebble Beach Shawl by Helen Stewart are typical swoopy shapes.

Here's where I could ramble on and on (you know I have it in me) about how to wear each shape but we talked about it on our podcast. No, here is where I show you how I style my knitted shawls. Because it's all well and good for someone to tell you how to do it, but once you see how easy it is, you will want to rescue your shawls from the bottom of the basket!