Reptile Skin by Paola Albergamo

Reptile Skin

May 2018
Light Fingering ?
23 stitches and 38 rows = 4 inches
in garter stitch
US 3 - 3.25 mm
800 - 950 yards (732 - 869 m)
One size
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Reptile Skin is an elongated shawl worked sideways featuring a simple two-color brioche pattern worked on a garter stitch background… fun and three-dimensional as only brioche stitch can be. With the plus benefit of being reversible!

Two-color brioche stitch worked flat is a little complex to handle at first, but has the big pro of having 3 rest rows every “pattern” row.

The main design element of this shawl are the brioche “scales” in different sizes that run along the piece, formed by double increases and decreases, forcing the fabric in three-dimensional shapes, in a play of texture with two different “garter” stitches, that reminds me of a Reptile skin.
The garter stitch background between the “scales” is worked following the brioche stitch color changes, knitted on a “brk” row and purled on a “brp” row. In this way, the garter stitch shows an unusual “marled” effect.

At the top of the shawl, after the “scales” and before the upper border, there is another garter section which is worked with the same color sequence, but using only the knit stitch, and the garter stitch looks completely different, adding texture and interest to the shawl.
Each one of the textures and stitches used gives a perfectly reversible result, so the shawl looks awesome on both sides.

This pattern is made by two separated files: one for written instructions and one for charts. Please make sure to download everything you need.

Finished size: 18” / 45 cm width and 72” / 180 cm length.
Size is customizable, using different yarn weight and needle sizes.

23 sts and 38 rows = 10 cm 4” in garter stitch.
Note: Gauge is not critical for this project.


Fingering weight wool (or wool mix) yarn in two colors, approx 440 yards/400 m each.
The sample in the pictures is made with Malabrigo Sock (100% Superwash Merino; 440 yards 402 meters/100 gr) col. 133 Reflecting Pool for MC, col. 037 Lettuce for CC, approx 420 yds (384 m) each.
3.25 mm /US 3 * circular needles.
* or size needed to obtain gauge.
8 markers; tapestry needle.
Optional: 4 round glass or murano beads for the “eyes”.