If you've mastered basic rectangular, unshaped knitting projects like scarves and dishcloths, it's time to add some basic shaping to your repertoire. This basic triangular wrap can be shaped using any knit-stitch increase or decrease of your choice. It's also a great project for experimenting with how yarn and needle choices affect the drape and feel of your knitted fabric.
Knitted Wrap Pattern
You can download your own copy of this pattern by clicking on the image. The pattern will open as a PDF file, which you can then save or print out.
- Two to four skeins of your favorite yarn
- Knitting needles of the appropriate size to use with that yarn
- Single ring-style marker, large enough to fit around your knitting needles
- Yarn needle
This wrap is knit starting from one side corner, then gradually increasing into a roughly triangular shape. You then perform a series of decreases to taper the knit back down to the opposite side corner. You can use any increase or decrease technique you like. The sample wrap was created using the bar increase, sometimes called "knit 1 front and back" and abbreviated as kfb or k1fb. The decrease in the sample was k2tog or "knit two together."
You can refer to the diagram below to get a better idea of how the wrap will come together.
Cast on three stitches.
Row 1: Knit
Row 2: Purl
Row 3: Knit 1, increase 1, knit until the final two stitches. Increase 1, knit 1.
Row 4: Purl
Rows 5 - 18: Repeat rows 3 and 4.
Row 19: Knit 1, slip the ring marker onto your right needle, increase 1, knit the remaining stitches.
Row 20: Purl
Repeat rows 19 and 20 (slipping the marker onto your right needle every time you reach it), until the wrap is as tall as desired. Keep in mind that you're knitting the wrap starting from one side corner and working across to the other side corner, so its "height" is the distance from your first stitch to your last stitch.
Continue knitting even (without increases), trying the wrap on over your shoulders periodically to gauge its width. You get to decide when you're ready to start tapering the wrap to the other side corner with decrease rows. Every time you reach the marker, just slip it onto your right needle and keep knitting or purling as usual.
Decrease Row 1: Knit 1, k2tog, knit remaining stitches.
Decrease Row 2: Purl
Continue decrease rows 1 and 2 until your next knit row begins one stitch before the marker.
Continue Decrease 1: Knit 1, remove marker, k2tog, knit until 3 stitches remain. K2tog, knit final stitch.
Continue Decrease 2: Purl
Finishing: Repeat the two continue decrease rows until only three stitches are left. Then purl one row.
Bind off knitwise and use the yarn needle to weave the loose ends into your wrap for at least several inches. Then cut any extra yarn so it won't stick out between the stitches.
A Word about the Materials
The example wrap in the pictures was knit using two strands held together: Lion Brand Vanna's Glamour (the metallic silver yarn) and Lion Brand Pound of Love (the white acrylic). It required about 350 yards of each and fits a small adult woman. However, the exact amount of yarn required depends on your choice of needles and fabric. For more coverage or a larger shawl, you could end up using 700 yards or more of yarn. (You don't have to combine yarns if you don't want to, as it's just fine to knit this wrap with a single strand.)
Your choice of needles and yarn also affects how the finished product feels. Sometimes it takes a little experimentation to find your favorite feel -- that's part of the fun and adventure of knitting your own wraps. This yarn combination felt too stiff when knitted on size 10 needles, but yields the perfect combination of sturdiness, flexibility and drape when knitted on size 13 needles. The larger your needles, the less likely the edges of your stockinette stitch will curl in and require blocking.
Wearing Your Wrap
If the edges of your finished wrap curl inward, you can straighten them out by blocking your finished wrap. Once it's blocked, wearing it is as simple as wrapping it around your shoulders. If you've made a short wrap and need some help holding it in place, you can use a stick pin or brooch to secure it. Or sew a button onto one side of the wrap and attach a loop of extra yarn to the other side to serve as a buttonhole.
A Wrap for All Skill Levels
If you're a beginning knitter, the idea of shaping -- working increases and decreases -- might make this wrap seem imposing at first. But go ahead and give it a try! You might just be pleasantly surprised. Remember that you can use any increase or decrease you like, and this is a great opportunity to practice both techniques in a simple, repetitive pattern. By the time you're done with the wrap, you should feel confident enough to tackle a project with slightly more complicated shaping.