The Yarnologue

Casting On: Metalouse Shawl

Beautiful useful2William Morris said that during a speech to the Birmingham Society of Arts and School of Design in 1880. As he was a textile designer and artist, he probably won’t mind me applying it to yarn.

Because, as we all know, yarn is both!

Shawls are also both beautiful and useful. They are fun to knit and crochet, as well. And when you make them in Noro yarn they reach a whole new level of beauty. At least, I think so.

Kirara swiftI’m generally late to the party when a shawl pattern becomes popular. For some reason it takes me a while of seeing the pattern in various color combinations before I finally break down and make one.

The Metalouse Shawl by Stephen West is my current catch up shawl. The pattern is in the Winter 2012 issue of Knitty. I’m just a year behind! (I’ve been busy.)

The original shawl was knit using Noro Shiraito for the main yarn and a solid, contrasting yarn.

I’ve selected Noro Kirara in color #22 (blues, greens, and purple) for my main yarn and Ella Rae Lace Merino in a vibrant orange for my contrasting yarn. Basically, the yarns in the picture at the top of the blog post.

It’s a crazy color combination compared to what I normally use, but for some reason it works.

metalouse startI worked my garter tab cast on in the quiet of my own home where I could concentrate.

Then I plunged into the pattern at knitting group tonight at my local yarn store. It feels like I’m making good progress already.

metalouse crescent

I’ve seen people online say the Metalouse Shawl is a fun and fast knit. I imagine that will be the case for me since the color changes make a Noro project even harder to put down than normal. I want to see what the next color will be and how it will look with the colors that came before!

The Metalouse Shawl pattern has yarn overs that fall between knit and purl stitches. There is a special way to work them for better results. You can read about it, and see pictures, in my blog post about the Louisa Harding Madelena Scarf. There is a teaser image below.

Have you knit the Metalouse Shawl? Share any tips in the comments!


  1. I love the Metalouse shawl. Where can I get the pattern? I would live to try it myself.

  2. I meant I would love to make one. I live to knit.

  3. Hi Alice.
    The Metalouse Shawl is a free pattern on Knitty

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