Use these formulas to plug and play your desired stitch patterns into any shawl shape with ease! These are also an awesome jump-off point for budding designers who wish to take the plunge into shawl design. Knowing how to shape it will make it that much easier to achieve your goals!
This Top-Down Half Pi is a variation of the pi shawl, is started at the top and worked down. The increase rows follow the same principle as the full pi shawl: the increase rows double the number of stitches on the needles worked at intervals based on the circle’s mysterious relationship to its radius. The most significant difference with this shawl is that it’s worked flat, not in the round. Because of this, you’ll need to add edge stitches to your shawl.
An applied lace bind-off looks fantastic with this shawl shape and adds additional elegance to a beautifully shaped shawl!
Shawl Shaping rule
As the diameter of the circle doubles, the circumference does too.
- Determine the desired radius of your shawl.
- Measure the row gauge of a blocked gauge swatch.
- Determine how many rows to work: Multiply the desired radius by row gauge.
- Determine the final number of stitches: Keep track of your increase rows—every time you work one, you will be doubling the stitch count, not including your edge stitches. Remember to add those edge stitches back in for your final count.
- I desire a pi-shawl that is 72″ / 183 cm across (36″ / 91.5 cm radius).
- My blocked gauge: 6 stitches and 8 rows in 1″ (2.5 cm).
- Rows to work: 36″ (radius) x 8 (row gauge) = 288 rows.
The pattern for a Top-Down Half Pi
My sample uses a yarn over for the increase, but you may choose to use whichever one stitch increase you prefer for this shawl.
Work a garter tab. (9 stitches on needle)
Increase row: *K1, inc; repeat from * to last stitch, k1. (8 sts inc; 17 total sts)
Work 3 rows, no increases.
Increase row: K3, *inc, k1; repeat from * to last 2 stitches, k2. (12 sts inc; 29 total sts)
Work 7 rows, no increases.
Increase row: K3, *inc, k1; repeat from * to last 2 stitches, k2. (24 sts inc; 53 total sts)
Work 15 rows, no increases.
Increase row: K3, *inc, k1; repeat from * to last 2 stitches, k2. (48 sts inc; 101 total sts)
Work 31 rows, no increases.
Increase row: K3, *inc, k1; repeat from * to last 2 stitches, k2. (96 sts inc; 197 total sts)
Work 63 rows, no increases.
Increase row: K3, *inc, k1; repeat from * to last 2 stitches, k2. (192 sts inc; 389 total sts)
Work until the desired radius has been obtained. Work a stretchy bind-off so you can block any lace into shape.
TIP: If you’re a tight knitter, going up a needle size or two can help a lot with binding off.