Eye of the Storm Shawl and other goodies!
You can find Holly's blog post on the crescent shawl here: Crescent Shawl Geometry
I've used this general information to construct a number of shawls over the past few years in various weights of yarn, and it works without fail. I just adjust my needle size to suit the weight of yarn chosen, and keep knitting until I like the overall length.
This particular shawl I called "The Eye of the Storm" largely due to the prevailing weather and the color of laceweight yarns used. One was a BFL yarn dyed by Smashknits in the colorway "Brooding". The other was Sugar Bush Drizzle (mohair and silk) in colorway "Thunderstorm" purchased from Darn Yarn several years back. The BFL gave the shawl body that mohair and silk alone could not. I knit the shawl on 4 mm needles.
Holly's instructions for starting a crescent shawl are simple:
CO 13 stitches (4 border stitches, 8 sections, 1 spine stitch)
Row 1: k2, (place marker, yo, k1) four times; place marker, k1 (place marker, k1, yo) 4 times, place marker , k2
Row 2: k2, purl to last two stitches, K2.
Row 3: k2, (slip marker, yo, k to marker) four times; slip marker, k1, (slip marker, k to marker, yo) four times.
Row 4: k2, purl to last two stitches, k2.
Repeat rows three and four until desired length is reached and bind off loosely.
Other times, I want an unfussy shawl, so I'll alternate between bands of stocking stitch and garter stitch. This can produce a striking product on its own.
Take for example, the men's shawl I made for a Christmas gift one year. This shawl was made in a Patons Chunky yarn on a 6mm needle. The stitches were larger and the banding effect was quite striking. The recipient loved it and has made good use of his "caplet", as he calls it.
I used a similar approach in my Eye of the Storm Shawl, alternating between bands of stocking stitch and garter stitch, ending with a wide band of garter stitch. The wide bottom band helps weight the edge so there is no curling to worry about.
Of course, if you wish to experiment with different stitch techniques, a shawl can be a great project for this. I made a shawl in Istex Einband (Icelandic laceweight) where I played around with a bamboo stitch and got a nice effect. Because of the increases on every right side row, the bamboo stitches were staggered and this created a nice lacy effect.