Wilshire by Dee O'Keefe


January 2012
Lace ?
5 stitches = 1 inch
in stockinette
US 4 - 3.5 mm
800 - 850 yards (732 - 777 m)
One size - 76" x 38"
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This pattern is available for $5.00 USD buy it now

Wilshire is a contemporary lace top-down triangular shawl inspired by the classic Art Deco architecture of Los Angeles, particularly on Wilshire Boulevard, that captivated me when I lived there a few years ago. The bold geometric forms of chevrons, diamonds and zig zags which are characteristic of Art Deco design have been incorporated into the wide border of the shawl, with diamond bands breaking up the stockinette sections of the shawl body.

Wilshire is offered as a chart-only pattern with large, easy-to-read charts and very detailed instructions on how to use them. Even knitters who have not previously used charts should find these user-friendly and simple to comprehend.

Also included are two additional instruction sheets that may be helpful for knitters who are new to lace shawl knitting: “How to Block a Lace Shawl” and “Lace Shawl Knitting Tips.”

Wilshire is available in one generous size of 76” x 38”. The blue shawl pictured used 850 yards of heavy lace weight yarn on US #4 (3.5mm) needles. Test knitters used an average of about 800 yards of regular lace weight yarn and their shawls were a bit smaller at about 72” x 36”.

Wilshire would look lovely knitted in either lace or fingering weight yarn. The yarn used in the pictures was a very heavy weight lace yarn. If a standard or extra fine lace yarn is used, I recommend a smaller needer to maintain an opaqueness in the stockinette section of the design. Use of fingering weight yarn will increase the size of the shawl, so a US 5 needle is recommended unless you are looking to knit a large blanket! If you are a loose knitter, you may wish to adjust the needle sizes accordingly.

A solid, tonal or subtly variegated yarn is recommended to showcase the intricacy of the border design.

Construction Notes: Wilshire starts at the center back of the neck and is knit down to the bottom edge. There is a three-stitch garter border on each side, four yarn-over increases on each right-side row and two center stitches separating each half. Patterning is done on the right side rows only, with all wrong side rows being purled between the garter borders.