A Travel-Inspired Shawl

I enjoy traveling and often pick up the work of local artisans. After doing a fair amount of lace knitting earlier in the year, I wanted to knit a scarf/shawl/wrap based on a painted cloth I found in South Africa several years ago.
African print to use in chart patternTribal Traces African Sampler Scarf/Shawl was my first design incorporating eyelet lace stitches, and has so far been the most popular.

TrTr2 TrTr1-1

I have knitted the pattern in both laceweight (2-ply) and fingering weight (4-ply) wool. The scarf pictured was done with 2-ply yarn on 3.25mm needles and measures 25x160cm (10×63 inches).
TT 1This one, which I think is a better representation of the actual painted cloth, was knit with 4-ply wool on 3.5mm needles, and measures 35x230cm (14×90 inches).

I used 1 80-gram skein of 2-ply superwash wool for the lace-weight wrap, with a fair amount left over. For the fingering weight shawl I used 2 100-gram skeins, with just a bit left over.

Two identical panels are knit and then grafted together using the Kitchener stitch. There are 6 sections to each panel.

I’d enjoy seeing your results if you decide to knit Tribal Traces, perhaps with a different type of yarn.


Free Guest Towel Pattern – and its Mate

Free Seed Chevron Towel Pattern

Guests coming for the holidays? Want to add a fresh new touch to the guest bath? Here’s a free pattern for my Seed Stitch Chevron Reversible Guest Towel.

I decided that I wanted to knit a guest towel and wanted it to be reversible but couldn’t find a pattern I liked, so I designed this one.

This reversible knit towel measures 28x43cm (11x17in) and is soft with a nice nubby texture from the seed or moss stitch. The chevron pattern looks great on both sides.

I knit this on US 5 (3.75mm) needles using a DK weight yarn – King Cole Cottonsoft in Coral. It used around 2/3 of the 100g skein. (I’ve also seen this knit in a worsted-weight yarn, which I liked as well, as the heavier yarn gave the towel additional body and increased the size.)

There’s a mate to this pattern: Seed Stitch Chevron Cotton Knit Towel – Reversible.
Eyelet Seed Chevron Towel Pattern
(Note that this pattern is available for USD 0.99)

This one has some lace eyelet features in the edging and internal borders and is the perfect mate for the free pattern.

This reversible knit towel measures 28x43cm (11x17in) and is soft with a nice nubby texture from the seed or moss stitch. The chevron pattern looks great on both sides.

I knit this on US 5 (3.75mm) needles using a DK weight yarn – King Cole Cottonsoft in Coral. It used around 2/3 of the 100g skein.


Free Pattern – Eyelet ZigZag Garter Stitch Knit Scarf in Mohair (reversible)

If you’re looking for an easy pattern for a scarf as a Christmas gift, look no further!

I had 100 grams of Colinette Hand Dyed Mohair sitting around for a while and decided I’d make a simple scarf, so I did a reversible garter zigzag design and thought I’d post the 2-row pattern for the scarf:

What you’ll need:
100 grams (193 yards/175 meters) Colinette Hand Dyed Mohair (78% mohair, 13% wool, 9% nylon)
Weight: Aran
Color: Tapis (this colorway has been discontinued by the supplier, but it’s often available at online stores and eBay)
6mm (US size 10)

Note: You can use any yarn you like, but your final dimensions may differ from my result.

CO 33 stitches
Row 1: (K4, YO, K1, YO, K4, SK2P) twice; K4, YO, K1, YO, K4 (35 stitches on needle)
Row 2: K2togTBL, K31, K2tog (33 stitches on needle)

Repeat Rows 1 and 2 until you’ve nearly run out of yarn.
BO loosely
If you’d prefer a pattern that you can download, it’s available for free in my Ravelry shop.

CO (cast on)
K (knit)
K2tog (knit 2 stitches together from the left needle – to decrease 1 stitch)
SK2P (slip 1 stitch as if to knit, knit the next 2 stitches together, and pass the slipped stitch over the 2 stitches that were knit together – to decrease 2 stitches)
K2togTBL (TBL means through the back loop, so when you knit these 2 stitches together, instead of going in from the front side to knit 2 together, you go in from the back of the needle (through the back loop of both at the same time) and then knit – to decrease 1 stitch)
YO (yarn over – to increase 1 stitch)
BO (bind off)
The finished size is around 7-1/2×60 inches (19×153 cm). I’m sure you could add several more inches with blocking.

If you like the scarf and don’t have time to knit, you can buy it from my Etsy shop.

Happy knitting,
Mike H

Christmas Trees and Snowflakes

Welcome back!

Knit yourself a special accessory for the holidays.CTandS3

Also perfect as a gift for someone with the holiday spirit, this bright red lace knit scarf is lightweight yet warm, knit in a 4-ply wool that’s machine washable.

The scarf is made in 2 panels, joined with the easy Kitchener garter graft (link to video instructions included).

Christmas trees and snowflakes are featured in the lace design, which is enhanced by a single translucent glass bead topping each of the trees.

You’ll find the written instructions easy to follow for this 7.5 x 66 in/19 x 167 cm Christmas Trees and Snowflakes Lace Knit Scarf!

Also, let’s not forget our furry friends during the holiday season. They might enjoy some knitted lace as much as their humans do.

There are 2 patterns in 1 here:

  1. Snowflakes – designed for a small dog, with a measurement between button to buttonhole of about 11.5 inches (29.2 cm). There is a note in the pattern about increasing or decreasing this measurement if necessary.
  2. Christmas trees – designed for a medium-sized dog, with the distance between button and buttonhole being 13 inches (33 cm).

They knit up quickly, and as you can see in the photo, the Snowflakes scarf looks really nice on my pal Charlie.

If your schedule is keeping you too busy to knit, both the human and doggie versions are available as finished hand knit products in my Etsy store – with free worldwide shipping by air until December 4.

See you next week. Happy knitting and shopping!


Welcome to This Man Knits.  I’m a knitwear designer based in Bangkok, Thailand and travel extensively looking for inspiration for  my new and original designs for hand knit accessories – for women, men, and their pets!

From week to week you can expect to see photos of my work, hints and tips about knitting, links to patterns, and links to sites where you can purchase my luxury hand knit items.

If you’d like to see the patterns I have available, visit my Ravelry page.

My scarves, shawls, and other accessories can be viewed and purchased in my Etsy store.

In the meantime if you’d like to learn a bit more about me, I was recently interviewed for the Around the World in 80 Skeins blog.

I’d love to hear from you about what you’d like to see on this site, your feedback on my patterns and accessories, and anything else related to knitting!

See you next week,


Knitting tips, patterns, tutorials, photos and more.