Friday, May 6, 2011

2.4 Star Stitch for a Shawl

I am downright baffled by the name of this pattern. Polka Dot Lace, yes. Checkerboard Lace, sure. Even Windowpane Plaid. But Star? I just don't see it.

Unsuitable nomenclature aside, this stockingnet lace design produces a triangular fabric suitable for shawls. (I can also see it used as a kerchief or as an insertion for a neckline, creating a spot of openwork over the upper breastbone.) The simple pattern is easy to memorize and might be a good first project for the lace novice. After casting on three stitches and working two rows to get started, the 4-row repeat begins. Every right side row starts with a yarn over that is not worked off with a corresponding decrease and every other RS row ends similarly, resulting in the growth and shaping of the piece. The "star stitch" decrease, symbolized on the chart by an asterisk, reduces every three stitches to two and does not produce a bias fabric like o, k2tog.

My doll-size sample was knit with fingering weight wool on 3.75mm needles. I worked 60 rows and the piece blocked to 11¾" wide, 6" long.

You can download the full-size chart, verbal instructions and notes here.

Bonus Pattern for Crocheters

On the page opposite "Star Stitch for a Shawl" is "Star Stitch. Croched [sic]." It is the lone crochet pattern in the notebook. I am not much of a crocheter and I have not proofed the pattern, so I present it here verbatim and without illustration. (If any crocheters out there try it out, we would love to see your results. You can share photos of your work on the flickr 1884 Knitted Lace Sample Book group page.)

A chain of 20 stitches. Without putting the thread over first put the needle into the 2nd chain, thread over, and draw through leaving the two loops on the needle. Do the same in the next 3 chains successively drawing the wool up longer. Having 5 loops on the needle put wool over and draw through all, make 1 chain to hold it.
* Put needle into stitch where 5 loops are, draw thread through, put needle into back part of last loop of the star before. Draw through, put needle into the next two chain, just the same, drawing them up longer and thread over, draw through all 5 loops, and make one chain.*
Repeat between stars.

Next time: Knitted Ruching


Mary Keenan said...

I can almost see a stylized loopy four-point star in between each of the holes, but I agree - it's a stretch! Pretty stitch though. Thanks as always for sharing these!

vintagekathleen said...

Yes, I did see that, but it looks more like a dragonfly to me than a star. And it is only noticeable upon extremely close inspection-- it doesn't stand at all. Generally one sees just the holes and lattice. Sheesh.

Shawna said...

Maybe the stars are the round holes, like you would see round stars when you look in the sky, as opposed to pointed polygons?

I recognized the crochet pattern immediately. It is also called Daisy stitch, or Daisy Star stitch, etc. I love to use it to make the edges of baby booties. Here is a youtube video with a quick demo of the stitch:

Anonymous said...

I'm knitting this right now in a living history museum from the original pattern.

The pattern shown here isn't quite right to get the 'star' formation. You do NOT K3 ... it's *YO, slip stitch, K2, PSSO*. That gives a drop effect of the slipped stitch and the star.

(any questions can email me at


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Anonymous said...

it is a variation of a star stitch, which is [K, P into 3 sts/K into same 3 sts/P into same 3 sts]

similar principle

thanks for posting this. a straight (as opposed to biased) lattice like this is something i've been searching for for a while!

Unknown said...

Beautiful shawl. If this were made into a scarf, how would you suggest altering the pattern for straight edges? Thanks for sharing.

Anonymous said...

like Rexanne Baker, i would really like to know how to create this fabric with straight, instead of increasing, sides. ideas?

Veronika said...

Rexanne and Anonymous: Use a cdd instead of the single decrease. Or have one single decrease per yarn over. As long as you balance the increases with decreases, you will be fine.

Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Unknown said...

That's really nice lace information you have given, Lace is the best part of clothes for women it gives unique looks to you.

Mary-Lou said...

The crochet stitch pattern sounds like it's probably Marguerite Stitch ... see for a good explanation with lots of pics