I am a novice knitter who wants to make a prayer shawl for a friend whose husband is battling pancreatic cancer. The directions say knit 3, purl three…is this the same as ribbing…do I have move the working yarn around every time i change from k to p and likewise?
I am really anxious to get started but when I do the k and p, it does not look right at all. I would really appreciate any help.
Thanks SisterSusie :


Yes, K3P3 is a rib. You have to move the yarn to the front of the work to do the purls and to the back of the work to do the knits. If you don’t move the yarn, you’ll add a LOT of stitches. :wink: Check out Amy’s Video for K2P2 ribbing and just adjust it to your K3P3. Ribbing tends to look odd at the beginning stages b/c there isn’t enough length for the ribbing to develope. After about 3" or so, you’ll start to see the pattern form. If it still looks odd to you, perhaps your tension is inconsistant? :?? Also, if you are using a “novelty” yarn (Homespun comes to mind), the texture of the yarn might not be the best for showing off the ribbing.

Hope that helps a little

Thank you so much for the help with the K3P3…I will watch the video and work a longer piece of the pattern before I decide it is not right.
Appreciate your help.

I too am making a prayer shawl. So I just registered so I could reply to your question.

The K3P3 does indeed sound like a ribbing pattern. However the directions I have indicate that you should cast on an “odd” multiple of three stitches. Also every row will be K3, P3, ending K3. So it ends up being sort of a modified seed stitch.

According to the above directions, you would knit in every purl stitch and purl in every knit stitch. For example suppose you cast on 57 stitches. 57/3 is 19, and 19 is odd. This makes 57 an odd multiple of three. When you knit/purl each row, the pattern is indeed K3, P3 across ending K3.

OTOH if you cast on 60 stitches, an even multiple of 3, (60/3=20), then every row would be K3, P3 and the row would end P3. This would make the ribbing pattern which is not what you want for an entire shawl or anything that I know of.

Hope this makes sense and helps.

I just finished a prayer shawl for a friend who is having cancer surgery. The number of stitches should be uneven. I think I used 57 and you should use a 3 stitch seed stitch (it’s symbolic). K3, P3. As I remember (old age, short memory, I’m working on something else now), every row started with a Knit stitch. There’s no ribbing involved. You might check for a pattern; also for more info. The only thing was, I used 4 skeins of Lion Jiffy and it could have been longer, even tho’ it measured 60 inches. It seemed short when I gave it to her. I used a 10-1/2 circular needle and it worked up in no time.

I really appreciate all of the help on the prayer shawl. This is something that I feel is really important to do. I have only done one scarf but will practice on a swatch before starting the shawl.
Thank you again.