Lady's Circular Cape in Shell Pattern by Jane Sowerby

Lady's Circular Cape in Shell Pattern

November 2006
Lace ?
18 stitches and 26 rows = 4 inches
in Stockinette stitch
US 6 - 4.0 mm
US 7 - 4.5 mm
1100 yards (1006 m)
Radius 23" (58.4 cm)
Flag of English English
Errata available:

Original lace pattern from Weldon’s Practical Knitter, Volume 1, 1st Series, 1886.

Pattern Description from Victorian Lace Today: “This has to be one of the prettiest and most romantic shawls I have ever knitted. The original pattern, comprised of ten panels of shell pattern with a separately knitted border, suggested ‘…4 oz of best soft white merino wool and two bone knitting needles No.10 (3.25mm)….’ I worked twelve panels, in a mohair/silk blend with larger needles, but the size could be adjusted easily with different needles, yarn, or by reducing or increasing the number of panels knitted. Since every other row is purled, it grows quickly.”

Difficulty: Intermediate Lace

Measurements: Radius 23”

Yarn Weight/Yardage: #2 Fine Weight / 1100 yds

Yarn & Colorway: ROWAN Kidsilk Haze 5 balls in 590 Pearl


  • 4.5mm/US 7 circular needles, or size to obtain gauge, 80cm (32”) or longer
  • Two 4mm/US 6 double-pointed needles


  • Stitch markers
  • Blunt needle
  • Small amount smooth yarn for cast-on

Pages: 114-115

Volunteer Editor’s note: Many knitters have reported running short of yarn on VLT patterns--check gauge carefully (and purchase extra yardage, just to be safe!)