Dive into Lace Knitting

Does lace knitting make you nervous? I hear you! Try one of these tutorials and free patterns to clear this knitting hurdle

Is there anything more beautiful than lace knitting? Handmade lace is truly a sight to behold. Not only is it beautiful on its own, but there’s something about it that just sings of love, care, dedication, devotion. No matter how simple a lace project is, it looks so ethereal and complex that it appears as though hours of tireless concentration went into its creation.

That might explain why I have long been intimidated by lace knitting. It’s kind of my last frontier, in a way. I’ve finally overcome my fear of colorwork thanks to a Star Wars hat that was far easier than I thought it would be. I wouldn’t say I’m afraid of lace knitting, exactly, but it definitely unnerves me. I had a bad experience with a lace shawl pattern that was way too complex for someone who’d never knit a lace shawl before, and since then I’ve been none too eager to try again.

Maybe you’re like me and aren’t keen on lace knitting, and maybe you’re also like me in that it drives you nuts that there’s a particular type of knitting you’ve never completed. If so, this post is for you!

Let’s Get into Lace Knitting

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So first, I have to direct you to one of the best free lace knitting tutorials I’ve seen online. It comes courtesy of Eunny Jang, and it’s called “Majoring in Lace.” It comes in four parts, listed below.

An Introduction

Yarn Choices, Needle Choices, Gauge, Chart Reading 101

The Structure of Lace, Role of the YO, Role of the Decrease, Movements in Lace Knitting

Provisional and Invisible Cast Ons, Hard Cast Ons, Circular Beginnings

As great as this tutorial is, it doesn’t get into things like lifelines and blocking. This handy page from Craftsy does, and it offers many more tips as well.

If you’d like a video tutorial, check out this clip, courtesy of Knitting Daily TV, from Eunny Jang. Watch it if only for her brilliant demonstration of purling multiple stitches together!

Need help reading a lace chart? Watch this helpful video from Craft Daily.

Knit Picks also has a tremendous 12-part video tutorial. If you want to take a lace knitting class absolutely free, dive into these videos! 

Finally, although it isn’t free, here’s one more pearl. Eunny Jang’s Lace Knitting: Basics & Beyond is a complete and thorough lace knitting class. If you’ve checked out the above tutorials and still feel like you could use some more hand-holding, let Eunny Jang lead you through this Craftsy online class.

Free Knitting Patterns for Lace – Starting Out

Sometimes, the best way to learn a new technique is to — in the words of the famous Nike ad campaign —
“just do it!” To that end, the following are several free lace knitting patterns that are perfect for beginners.

Lace Bookmark Pattern: Here is a perfect beginning lace project. It’s tiny and quick!

Kelp Scarf: A lovely scarf pattern constructed mostly of garter stitch with a fishnet lace design at each end.

Lacy Stripes Shawl: Ready for a shawl? A real, full-out shawl? Here’s your pattern. It consists of just two rows repeated throughout. Couldn’t be easier, but the result is glorious!

Reyna: This is a triangular shawl that’s designed to show off a lovely variegated yarn. Perfect for a skein of multicolored sock yarn you don’t quite know what to do with.

Easy Lace Shawl 2: This rectangular shawl features one of the easiest of all lace stitch patterns, the feather-and-fan stitch, and the results are stunning.

Easy Peasy Shawl: This is a slightly different kind of lace shawl, with the lace spiraling out of the center. A breathtaking circular shawl pattern with several different variations. Knit one or knit them all!

You can find a few more free knitting patterns for lace shawls in this older Knitting for Charity post. (Most of these are lace shawls, although one is a non-lace shawl.)

I hope this post has inspired you and made you ready to take the plunge into lace knitting!

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