My Fad of the Moment: Shrugs

I’ve transitioned from my recent shawl binge to a shrug binge. Do you knit like that? I find myself captivated by a particular shape or construction method, and then work variation upon variation on it until I feel as if I’ve made it “mine.”

Several years ago, when I was a much newer knitter and just starting to work in the round, I went through this process with hats: lace hats, cabled hats, hats with ribs in Fibonacci sequences, pointy hats, slouchy hats, hats with all sorts of designs worked into them in K/P combinations.

Now it’s shrugs.
The purply shrug
This is my version of Lacey from Knitty. I used malabrigo instead of mohair (no surprise there).

My modifications to the pattern:
• knit on dpns, then a circular, rather than using magic loop method
• shortened the cuffs (to 4.5″)
• worked wrist-to-wrist based on my measurements (this took three skeins—one for each sleeve and one for the body)
• worked the body-opening ribbing using my remaining skein of yarn and just kept going until it was done

The purply shrug by the sea
What I love about this pattern is that it involves no seaming at all: just round and round for the sleeves, back and forth for the body, pick up the ribbing, bind off and—voilá—you’re done.

Next came the Interweave Knits Sugarplum Shrug.

Their version:
The original shrug

Mine (knit in Ella Rae Angora Extra that I got on sale from—where else?—Little Knits):
The second shrug
My modifications:
• K wrong-side rows so that lace pattern has a garter stitch base, rather than stockinette
• rather than knitting lace border separately and attaching it, I sewed the side seams, then picked up stitches at the wrists and body opening and knitted a ruffle in modified feather-and-fan

As you can see, I am so pleased with the results that I am starting to go all Berroco…
The second shrug, in a baroque pose

Now I’m working away on an Aran Cabled Shrug for my sister in Lamb’s Pride Bulky (on sale at Discontinued Brand Name Yarn).
The sleeve of shrugs to come
The pattern is a bit frustrating, as the two cables are knit over different repeats, so I did a lot of cut and pasting of print-outs until I had them both centered satisfactorily. My gauge is also bigger than theirs, so I’m using the pattern, but knitting to my sister’s measurements, rather than following the recommended number of repeats.

Coming up next?

I’m thinking about Nashua’s Unstructured Shrug in Noro Transitions.
unstructured shrug

Or perhaps this somewhat frivolous little number from Drops.
drops shrug
I’m sure to have enough malabrigo…

6 Replies to “My Fad of the Moment: Shrugs”

  1. Those are all lovely and shrugs are a big favorite for me, too. Malibrigo is the perfect yarn for making one, too. You can wear one in a chair or sitting up in bed and the back of it doesn’t catch under you and immobilize. Hate that about sweaters.

  2. Wow your shrugs look great. I’ve often shied away from shrugs because I always thought they looked teeny bopper-like. But yours are substantial and look like they can actually keep someone warm. I have to rethink my shrug ban.

  3. Hi, I see you’ve also taken on the Aran Cabled Shrug. Did you have problems with the pattern’s accuracy? Specifically, 1) the 2/2 seed stitch is problematic and 2) the instructions for WS stitches are confusing! This is my first attempt following a pattern, and I’m not sure if it’s just my inexperience, or if there is an actual problem with the pattern! Thanks for any help. (i see you omitted the bobbles…:-)

  4. I tried to make the Kaya aran cabled shrug and found that the pattern is very difficult and confusing. i quit and made something else. I’m not a beginner knitter, i have knitted for over 20 years and made many cabled and pattern sweaters but this one the pattern just didn’t make sence to me at all. How did you do it?

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