Plumage Shawl knitting pattern

Vorige Item 20 of 20

Plumage Shawl knitting pattern​


Please note: this pattern used to be with 3 skeins of Serena.


A delicate, supple Shawl to be proud of.



This Shawl is knit in a not-too-complicated lace pattern. For this you need to increase and decrease stitches.

You're already familiar with:

  • Casting on;
  • Knitting and purling;
  • Switching to a new ball of yarn;
  • Casting off.

In this tutorial you'll learn how to:

  • Increase with a yarn over;
  • Decrease by knitting 2 together.

This project is suitable for the advanced beginner. The pattern requires some skill in recognizing the stitches. One needs to pay attention, especially during the row of increasing and decreasing. 

You can do all this already? For the pro's with much experience, this is a relaxing pattern with just enough zest not to be boring. Go straight to the Quickstart Pattern.


Required materials:



The finished Shawl measures approx. 160 x 35 cm.


CONTENTS / go straight to:

About this project





About this project

In Dutch this pattern is called the "Peacock stitch". I'm not sure if this translates in English though. But it does remind one somewhat of the layered feathers of a peacock's tail. It's a cheerful yet distinguished pattern. 

It's a fun project to learn increasing and decreasing stitches.


Chapter I 


The number of stitches is a plural of 18 + 6.

  1. Loosely cast on 114 stitches.
  2. First row: knit all stitches.
  3. Second row: knit 3. Then purl all stitches but the last 3. Knit the last 3 stitches. 
  4. Third row: 
    • Knit 3
    • Then 3 x (knit 2 together), 6 x (yarn over, knit 1).
    • Now repeat 6 x (knit 2 together), 6 x (yarn over, knit 1) until there are 9 stitches left on the left hand needle. 
    • Again 3 x (knit 2 together).
    • Knit the last 3 stitches.
  5. Fourth row: knit all stitches.
  6. Repeat these four rows.
  7. Cast off and weave in the loose ends. Block the Shawl and let dry flat.


Chapter II 


This pattern repeats every 4 rows. In the third row of each repeat, you have to increase and decrease stitches. This results in the undulating, lace-like pattern. 

There are various ways to increase and decrease. For this Shawl, you increase by making a “yarn over, knit 1” stitch. This makes a decorative hole or “eyelet” in your knitting. You decrease by knitting 2 stitches together. 

Here you’ll find how to increase and decrease. In Chapter III, all comes together in knitting the Shawl. 



In the third row of each 4-row repeat you have to knit 2 together. 

The knit 2 together stitch basically works in the same way as knitting just 1 stitch. Only you insert the needle in 2 stitches instead of 1. 


  • Insert the right hand needle through two stitches at the same time, instead of one.
  • Wrap the yarn around and pull through both stitches as if they were one stitch:


  • The 2 stitches on the left hand needle are now knit into 1 stitch on the right hand needle. 



In the third row of each 4-row repeat you also have to increase stitches. For this you wrap the yarn around the knitting needle and then knit a stitch “normally”.

A “yarn over” literally means taking the yarn over the needle. During the “yarn over” you immediately knit 1.


  • Bring the yarn to the front.
  • Insert the left hand needle into the next stitch, as you would when normally knitting 1.
  • Take the yarn over the right hand needle to the back and wrap it around the right hand needle:

omslag breien


  • Knit the stitch.

So the term (yarn over, knit 1) means that you first wrap the yarn over your right hand needle and then knit the next stitch. 


Practise makes perfect

To practise these stitches, you can for example cast on 18 stitches.

Knit the first row and purl the second row. 

Third row: 

  • Knit 2 together. Knit 2 together again. Knit 2 together again. Now you have knit times (knit 2 together) in total. 
  • Now knit 6 times a (yarn over, knit 1). 
  • Again 3 times (knit 2 together).

Have you knit all the stitches on your left hand needle?

Remember: to increase six times with a “yarn over”, you need 6 stitches. To decrease six times with a “knit 2 together”, you need 12 stitches.​

To really be able to see the effect of your practice patch, knit all stitches on the fourth row and repeat these four rows. 

You can just pull out the patch once you’re done, and use the wool for the real thing. 

This undulating, lace-like pattern is also known as the “peacock stitch”. Somehow it does remind one of the layered structure of a peacock’s tail.


Chapter III 


OK, you ready for the real thing? 

Especially in the beginning, you will probably have to do a lot of counting during the third row. This may not be the most fun way to spend your time, but it’s really worth it. For if you mistake even only one stitch, your whole pattern is ruined.

If you prefer, you can use stitch markers to help point out where you should start decreasing and increasing.

Breathe in, breathe out… and nail it!


Knitting the Plumage Shawl 

  1. Loosely cast on 78 stitches.
  2. First row: knit all stitches.
  3. Second row: is made up of purled stitches with 3 knit stitches on both sides. This creates a decorative edge and prevents the Shawl from curling too much. Knit 3 stitches. Then purl all stitches until you reach the last 3 stitches. Knit the last 3 stitches. 
  4. Third row: 
    • Knit 3 stitches in the normal way (for the decorative edge).
    • Knit 2 stitches together. Knit 2 stitches together again. One more time, knit 2 stitches together. 
    • Now you’ll increase 6 stitches: wrap the yarn over and knit 1 as described earlier. Do this 5 more times. You have totalled 6 x (yarn over, knit 1).
    • Now repeat 6 x (knit 2 together), 6 x (yarn over, knit 1) until there are 9 stitches left on the left hand needle. Keep counting! 
    • Again, as at the start of this row, another 3 x (knit 2 together).
    • Knit the last 3 stitches.
  5. Fourth row: knit all stitches.
  6. Repeat these four rows.

It’s the pretties if you end your Shawl with a full repeat of the 4 rows. So don’t wait too long with your very last repeat, when you’re reaching the end of your third ball of yarn.

Cast off and weave in the loose ends at the start, finish and halfway your Shawl. Use the wool needle for this. 

Neatly arrange the Shawl into shape on a moist towel. (If you’re stuck for space, fold it in two lengthwise.) I used clean towels fresh from the laundry, but undried, so moist but not soaking wet. 

Stretch the Shawl a bit where necessary, to get it into its neat rectangular shape. Carefully put another moist towel over it and let this whole construction dry flat. 


CONGRATULATIONS! Your Plumage Shawl is finished and ready to use!


Did you enjoy this? I sure hope you did! 

Working on this project, you have practiced important knitting skills. 

I am very interested to hear your opinion regarding this project, the yarn and the tutorial. Your feedback helps us to improve.

Therefore I would very much appreciate it if you would share your experience in our online guestbook.

Of course you can also share your thoughts via hallo @ yarnz . nl  

I’d love to hear from you!






Michèle Tewes.

Yarnz. Start Crafting.

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