A prayer shawl is a knitted or crocheted rectangle* about 18 inches wide and 5 or 6 feet long.
- Use a soft acrylic yarn that is machine washable and dryable.
- The patterns given are written for worsted (4) weight yarn. Other yarn weights can be used, just make sure the dimensions of the finished shawl match the requirements.
- To get a soft drape, go up two or three needle sizes from that listed on the yarn label. I assume the same would be true of hook sizes.
- To follow the original prayer shawl pattern**, use worsted weight yarn to cast on 63 stitches. Knit three, purl three. That’s it. The pattern is the same for both sides. To use other weights of yarn, cast on an odd multiple of three stitches (63, but not 60 or 66; 57, but not 60 or 54; 69, but not 66 or 72).
- Otherwise, anything goes !! Have a favorite shawl pattern? Use it! Want to try a new stitch pattern? Go for it! Not enough of one color yarn? Make stripes! Fringe or tassels or neither? Your choice.
- You can order yarn and needles or hooks from Amazon (delivered) or Michaels or Joann’s (pickup in store/curbside or have delivered to home).
- For free or purchased patterns, go to ravelry.com. This is an online community of knitters and crocheters around the world. It is free to join. Go to Patterns and type “shawls free” in the search box.
- We usually ask God to accept our work as prayer. Also, the Prayer Book has prayers for the sick or suffering.
*Triangle shawls are perfectly acceptable!
** Crocheters, you can make a rectangle of the same dimensions in any stitch pattern you like.
Any hat pattern can be used for a chemo cap. The main thing is the yarn: it must be very soft and smooth. Yarn that can be machine washed and dried is best. Caron Simply Soft is an excellent choice, as are Red Heart Soft Touch, Super Soft, or Comfort. Any smooth baby yarn would work as well.
- Worsted (4) weight is probably the heaviest weight to use, unless the cap is meant to be worn outdoors in cold weather. Sport (3) weight may be used as well.
- Cancer patients report that knots or pins on the inside of the hat make it very uncomfortable, so even if it takes longer, yarn ends should be woven in.
- In warm weather, people may prefer scarfs or wraps, but may still want caps to sleep in.
- Buttons or crocheted or knitted flowers added to the hat make a nice touch but are not required. They can be sewn on; just make sure not to put a knot or pin on the inside.
Free patterns can be found online, and materials can be ordered. See above for details.
Mask Mates / Ear Savers and Masks
Now that we’re supposed to wear cloth masks when we go out, people are finding that elastic loops behind the ears are uncomfortable. The solution: attach the elastic to buttons! With 10 minutes of work, a little yarn, and a couple of buttons you can solve the problem for yourself and others.
Free patterns are available on Ravelry.com. Go to the green navigation bar at the top and click on “patterns”. Under “designers on ravelry!” choose “free patterns”, then enter mask in the search box. You will find many patterns for various types of ear savers.
While there are many patterns for making masks, here is one that at least one St. Luker has used: https://media. charlotteobserver.com/static/ public/MaskPattern.pdf.