Simple Knit Shrug

Hello everyone!

It’s been a while since I last put up a pattern. As most of you know, I had broken my ankle in January and have been in recovery for several weeks now. Since the accident, I’ve been in a splint, two hard casts, and hopefully a boot by this upcoming Tuesday.

In previous posts, I’ve chronicled my journey down this recovery period and those of you who’ve kept in touch on Instagram know what I’ve been going through. It’s been a tough ride, with pain, isolation and extreme “cabin fever.” With that said, there has been a tremendous outpour of support and words of kindness. I can’t explain to you how comforting it is to have others share their similar experiences with me. Thank you all for your love and advice through this difficult period of my life!

Before I had my accident, I started knitting a shrug. It was supposed to be a Christmas gift to myself but I never finished it in time. A few months later, I am finally finished!

The Simple Knit Shrug is a pattern that was based off of Lion Brand’s Speckled Shrug. I absolutely love the simplicity of the pattern.

simple knit shrug front

For the edgings I used the Loop Stitch while the rest of the shrug was knitted in Stockinette Stitch. The design is simple where it is knitted in a one-piece rectangular shape and is later sewn together to form the shrug. After using the mattress stitch to sew the sides together, I picked up stitches around the armhole and added the Loop Stitch edging to match the edging around the body.

simple knit shrug

After being blocked, this shrug measures about 37″ by 40″

Here is the pattern:


4 skeins of Madelinetosh Tosh DK in Cove (used 3.5 skeins)

  • 225 yds / 206 m per skein
  • 100% superwash merino wool

US 8-24″ circular needles

Knit Picks Rainbow Interchangeable Needles
Recommended: Knit Picks Rainbow Interchangeable Needles

Optional: US 8 DPNs (I used the 24″ circular needles and used magic loop)
Yarn/tapestry needle


5 sts=1″ in Loop Stitch


CO 150 sts. If you need to make it wider, just increase the number of CO sts by a multiple of 2 sts.


Note: slip all sts purlwise.

ROW 1 (RS): knit.
ROW 2: *k1, sl 1; rep from * to last 2 sts, k2.
ROW 3: knit.
ROW 4: k2, *sl 1, k1, rep from * to end.

Repeat these 4 rows until you have a total of 16 rows.


Work in Stockinette Stitch until you reach the desired length. I knitted a total of 100 rows (approximately 38 inches).

Finish the shrug off by repeating the Edging instructions. Bind off and weave in loose ends.

Assembling the Shrug

Before you begin to assemble the shrug, it is recommended that you block the work. I added about 7 inches to the width of the shrug by wet blocking. Note: the size of your shrug will depend on how aggressively you block.

Use the diagram below.

Simple Knit Shrug Diagram

Fancy edging = Loop Stitch edging

Fold the piece in half and use the mattress stitch to sew the seams together leaving a 7 inch opening for the armholes.

shrug mattress stitch

Here’s a video from Purl Soho which shows how to knit the mattress stitch.

Edging Around the Armholes

The last step is to add the edging around the armholes. Pick up 60 sts. Begin knitting in the round by using the pattern below (take note of where the beginning of the round is):

Rd 1: knit.
Rd 2: *p1, sl 1 wyif; rep from * to the end of round.
Rd 3: knit.
Rd 4: sl 1 wyif, p1; rep from * to the end of round.

Repeat Rds 1-4 until you reach a total of 12 rounds. Bind off and weave in loose ends. Repeat for other armhole.

pick up stitches shrug

simple knit shrug back

Now you have a brand new shrug! Enjoy and happy knitting!

simple knit shrug front


  1. Alison

    Your work is BEAUTIFUL! I am going to be making the “casual lace” knitted shawl in Louisa Hardling Noema for a friend’s birthday. That’s a beautiful shawl!
    Best wishes on your continued recovery with your ankle!

  2. linda titus

    sorry to hear about your ankle,but on a lighter note,I have been waiting for this very pattern.You have made me very happy,I will be knitting three of them,two for family members and one for me,thank you very much

  3. Sheryl

    Hope your recovery is going well. I love this Simple Knit Shrug and will be ordering yarn today. What a simple pattern that turns into a very classy piece. Very excited to get started!!! Thanks so much for sharing this pattern. What size would you say the shrug you made is? Anxious to get started.

      1. Ann Boyle

        Oh I hear you!!! I had an accident ) fell off ladder) Feb 26th underwent 7 hour operation to rebuild my knee have multiple breaks lucky to have my knee it was completely shattered. Ankle, tibula and fibula fractures to boot.
        I share your cabin fever, and loss of independence. I wish I could walk but I am still in a wheelchair and have another 6-8 weeks of this. I can’t even get myself outside as I have a couple of steps so need help to just breath the fresh air. My dear Dad would have said ‘it builds strength of character’. At least you have accomplished this pattern well done you. I will try it. Take care from another ‘shut in’.

  4. Susan Rouson

    Thank you SO much for your expertise! I just LOVE this deceptively simple pattern. Will knit one for my daughter in Colorado! I’m laid up w severe arthritis in both shoulders and a double permanent back injury. The isolation and cabin fever I could write a novel about, but the book might make people too lonesome, . I strongly recommend a combined therapy of prayer, dogs, smartphone communications, Audible, and KNITTING!

    Thank you again, so much.

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