We all have friends in need.
Sometimes the friend just needs a hug or an encouraging chat over a cup of coffee. Most of us benefit from a reprieve from the daily grind and having a friend to laugh with can go a long way.
But sometimes a friend needs more – when that friend is walking through a dark, sad, or scary time; what many of us call “the valley.”
Obviously, the person experiencing a trial is the one with the difficulty – but sometimes knowing how to be a good friend can be hard too. We don’t always know what to say. We don’t want to be trite, or too serious. We want to be there, but not over-bearing. Some of us also have a tendency to shirk away from very emotional situations.
A tangible gift has a powerful impact and offering something personal can help with healing.
I love giving a prayer shawl that represents everything I wish, hope, and pray for that individual in the midst of trouble.
And not merely a shawl you would find in a store or in a pattern book, but a personalized crocheted fabric that wraps a friend in symbolism.
The symbols you choose will depend on your beliefs and the beliefs of the person receiving the shawl. The purpose isn’t religious proselytizing; it’s blessing someone going through a hard time.
For this specific prayer shawl, I will share with you the symbols used and their significance. You can use this exact pattern or use it as an idea to start your own to bless someone in your life. Just like our Chemo Cap free pattern, please only use this pattern to bless someone else and not for personal gain.
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Prayer Shawl Symbols
Trinity stitch and single crochet.
The Trinity stitch serves as a reminder that God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit are with us.
Single crochet reminds us to have “singleness of mind” in two different ways:
- To encourage our friend to only think about good and true things and to not despair:
“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” Philippians 4:8
- To remind our friend that we will be with them in mind and spirit – we will be near to them as Christ commands:
“So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind.” Philippians 2:1-2
Number of stitches in each row:
Each single crochet row has 50 stitches. Every 50 years in Israel they celebrated the Year of Jubilee in which every slave was set free. This reminds us to celebrate our freedom in Christ.
Each Trinity stitch row as 24 stitches reminding us that God is with us each and every hour; and we need him every hour.
I Need Thee Every Hour (Hymn by Annie S. Hawks 1835 – 1918)
I need thee every hour, most gracious Lord; no tender voice like thine can peace afford.
Refrain: I need thee, O I need thee; every hour I need thee; O bless me now, my Savior, I come to thee.
I need thee every hour; stay thou nearby; temptations lose their power when thou art nigh. (Refrain)
I need thee every hour, in joy or pain; come quickly and abide, or life is vain. (Refrain)
I need thee every hour; teach me thy will and thy rich promises in me fulfill. (Refrain)
I need thee every hour, most Holy One; O make me thine indeed, thou blessed Son. (Refrain)
Alternating panels of color:
The number 7 is used to alternate the colors. Starting with 7 Trinity stitch rows of each color (AAAAAAABBBBBBB) and decreasing one row of color on each panel until there is one row of each color (see pictures). One row of each color is then alternated 7 times (ABABABA). Seven reminds us to rest in Christ as God rested on the 7th day – the Sabbath.
Colors Green & Blue:
Blue for peace –
“Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4: 4-7
Green for life –
“I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” John 10:10
The Jews wore/wear tassels on the corners of their undershirts. They are also referred to as “wings.” A woman touched Jesus’ tassel and was healed of her bleeding (Luke 8: 42 – 48). Tassels remind us that Jesus is our healer.
Crocheted on the Bias:
Life may be crooked, but it still can be beautiful!
Yarn Pictured: Malabrigo Rios in 27 Bobby Blue (CA) and 416 Indiecita (CB)
Yardage / Grams: 840 yards, 400 g (420 yds CA, 420 yds CB)
Yarn Weight: 4 medium worsted
Hook: Size (I-9) 5.5 mm (Shop my favorite hooks here.)
Gauge: 12 rows and 16 sc = 4” as pattern repeats
Completed Dimensions: 14 x 47”
Pattern Size: One size fits most
Skill level: 2 Easy (some crochet experience necessary)
Necessary Skills: basic stitches, repetitive stitch patterns, simple color changes
[ ] . . . . . . . work instructions within brackets as many times as directed
( ) . . . . . . . work instructions within parentheses as many times as directed
* . . . . . . . . repeat the instructions following the single asterisk as directed
sc— single crochet
dc— double crochet
Special Stitch: Trinity Stitch (T-st) Sc3tog by inserting hook into same st as last st made, draw up loop, [insert hook into next st, draw up loop] 2 xs, yoh, draw yoh through four loops on hook, ch 1. (one T-st made)
Notes – Stitches worked on the bias (as you work the piece will slant making a rhombus shape instead of a rectangle). To make piece wider you need to add chains (multiple of 2), to make the piece longer you can repeat the color pattern a second time (or a 1234567654321 row repeat with the 7 rows of T-st in the middle).
IMPORTANT: The “ch-1” at the beginning of a sc row does NOT count as a stitch (initial chains do count as stitches with taller stitches: a ch-2 counts as one hdc, ch-3 counts as one dc, etc. when a pattern indicates) Ch 1 at the beg of the row and work your first sc in the same st as the ch. If you do not do this, your shawl will not be worked on the bias.
With CA, ch 51.
Row 1: Sc in 2nd ch from hook and in ea ch across. (50 sc)
Row 2: Ch 1, turn, sc in 1st st, 24 T-st across row, sc in last st. (2 sc, 24 T-st total)
Row 3: Ch 1, turn, sc in 1st st, [sk ch from T-st, 2 sc in next st] across, sc in last st. (50 sc)
Row 4: Ch 1, turn, sc in 1st st, 24 T-st across row, sc in last st. (2 sc, 24 T-st total)
Rows 5 – 14: Rep rows 3 – 4.
Rows 15 – 28: With CB, rep rows 3 – 4.
Rows 29 – 40: With CA, rep rows 3 – 4.
Rows 41 – 52: With CB, rep rows 3 – 4.
Rows 53 – 62: With CA, rep rows 3 – 4.
Rows 63 – 72: With CB, rep rows 3 – 4.
Rows 73 – 80: With CA, rep rows 3 – 4.
Rows 81 – 88: With CB, rep rows 3 – 4.
Rows 89 – 94: With CA, rep rows 3 – 4.
Rows 95 – 100: With CB, rep rows 3 – 4.
Rows 101 – 104: With CA, rep rows 3 – 4.
Rows 105 – 108: With CB, rep rows 3 – 4.
Rows 109 – 110: With CA, rep rows 3 – 4.
Rows 111 – 112: With CB, rep rows 3 – 4.
Rows 113 – 114: With CA, rep rows 3 – 4.
Rows 115 – 116: With CB, rep rows 3 – 4.
Rows 117 – 118: With CA, rep rows 3 – 4.
Rows 119 – 120: With CB, rep rows 3 – 4.
Rows 121 – 122: With CA, rep rows 3 – 4. (Do not finish off)
Edging: Begin where you ended row 122. Work around entire piece in unworked stitches, chains and in the ends of rows.
Row 1: *[5 dc in T-st, sk ch, sc in next T-st] rep to corner, [5 dc in end of T-st row, sc in the end of next T-st row] rep to corner, rep from * once more, finish off.
Row 2: With CB, [5 dc in next sc from row 1, sc at the top of next 5-dc shell] rep around piece, sl st in final shell.
Finish off, weave in ends.
Cut 12” strands of yarn (28 in CA and 28 in CB (54 strands total). Attach 7 strands in CA and 7 strands in CB to each corner of the shawl.
Hope you liked the pattern! Comment below with any questions. I added some YouTube videos from my channel below. Enjoy!
Crochet often. Create always!