The Totally Marley Faded Brioche Shawl

The Totally Marley Faded Brioche Shawl

May 13, 2018

In a recent blog I mentioned that speckled yarn is the IT yarn to get on your needles right now, so take the IT yarn and the IT techniques and we have us a party on our needles!!

And a party on my needles is what I have found ladies and gents! When I seen Andrea Mowry's Mix and Mingle shawl I almost hit the roof LOL 

We are taking speckled yarn, marling it; fading it and adding in some.....wait for it......BRIOCHE!! This is definitely what I would call a party, not only on my needles, but a party in general! If you're looking for a really exciting knit sprinkled with a little challenge then this is your next project.

I have the perfect yarn and a beautiful combination of colors for my shawl. The pattern calls for lace weight but I chose to go with fingering weight for the added warmth we're still needing here in Newfoundland! I'm using Biscotte Bis-sock in Cozy Speckled, Julirose, Aqua and Turquoise. It's no secret that I love this yarn. It has just the right amount of squishy softness! Cake anyone?!

crescent speckled shawl

I guess you might be wondering what makes this shawl so marley?? The answer and technique of creating a marled effect is very simple, my friends! Hold 2 strands of different colored yarn together and knit them as one. In this case, we will hold 2 strands of the same color yarn together. Because it’s speckled yarn the 2 strands will look different and the result is stunning.


First off, this pattern uses a garter tab cast on. This cast on is perfect for crescent shawls simply because it’s seamless and provides a beautiful garter ridge around the edge of the shawl. It starts out with only a couple of stitches and after a few rows you simply start knitting down the side into the purl bumps. 

crescent speckled shawl

The first picture shows the garter tab. In the second picture, don’t turn your work, knit into the purl bump shown by the purple needle. After knitting into the required amount of purl bumps, knit into the cast on edge as many times as the number of stitches cast on, as shown in the third picture. That part is a little trickier as you can’t see exact stitches to knit into. Just knit as close to the edge the best you can. And voila! As you can see in picture four, we have a perfect little crescent and from here we are going to create a beautiful shawl that will definitely be an eye catcher! 

crescent speckled shawl

Our tiny little crescent shawl has grown so quickly! This is the Cozy Speckled portion and all I could think the entire time is how beautiful the color is. There's so many color options that you could use to fade with this one. I'm not even finished this shawl and I'm already thinking of the next LOL and the vicious cycle begins.....

faded speckled shawl

Ok, hard to believe but I'm finding it very difficult to put into words how I'm feeling right now. Julirose, you have not let me down! This has been the single most gratifying knit to date! Have I said that before? Maybe....that's beside the point. It's like knitting and painting at the same time. The gradual transition from one color to the next makes for a color that could be mistaken for this being from the one skein of yarn! I clearly have another addiction to add to the list....fading. I want to fade everything. I was always a little nervous of color. I would scour Ravelry to get ideas from other knitters not trusting myself to make the right choice. But this has opened up a can of worms that I may not be able to close. I'm feeling pretty confident that I'll be making an excessive amount of purchases from Biscotte’s STUNNING collection of yarns to fade with!

brioche shawl with speckled yarn

On to the Brioche applied border. This shawl is knit using 3 different techniques, however I feel like the Brioche portion could use a blog all on its own. First off I will tell you that this is my very first attempt at knitting Brioche which proves how well written and easy to understand Andrea Mowry's Mix & Mingle pattern is.

I was a little intimidated at first but in saying that I've always loved a challenge and to learn new techniques. Now, I was thinking it was probably going to be more complicated than it actually is. If you can knit, purl, slip a stitch and yarn over; you already have all the tools you need to Brioche. However, for the first time I'm not going to recommend bingeing that favorite show LOL It's a combination of easy stitches, yes, but there's a lot going on. I'm sure if you're experienced at Brioche knitting perhaps you're able to do it with your eyes closed!

I have one piece of advice that in my mind is absolutely essential. And that is, use a lifeline!! Actually, use two! If you look at the above picture you'll see my scrap piece of yarn. Also I have to say that my handy dandy Needle Keeper kept my stitches from coming off my needle while working the other end! So, after knitting a couple of rows I'd move up my scarp yarn because I found it extremely difficult to tink back if I made a mistake or dropped a stitch. Don't ask me how, but I even messed up once when moving my scrap yarn so after that I used two! It's not so bad losing a little work back to the scrap yarn but when you end up losing it all, sometimes tears are involved! I knit the garter portion in about 2 days and the Brioche in a week and a half. For the ladies that are familiar with the abbreviations BRK and BRP, that's a lot of barking and burping in my head LOL Very time consuming but boy oh boy is it ever worth it in the end!!

crescent speckled shawl

Here she is on the blocking board! Get at look at those colors!! She's so pretty I feel like she needs a name LOL I'm pretty proud of this one. And she was all ready for a little photo shoot that was taken on Mother's Day by my 7 year old daughter Sophie!! A little photographer on my hands perhaps? That could be very beneficial to me ;)

faded speckled shawl

crescent speckled shawl

brioche speckled shawl


Win Fowler said:

I’m a big fan of Andrea Mowry as well! I love the colors you chose for your shawl. I haven’t tried this particular pattern of hers but I’m thinking I may have to try it now! Thanks:)

Donna said:

I love your blog and your pictures are great! Your little girl did a wonderful job!

Sam said:

That pattern is gorgeous! I really would like to make it with a combination of orange speckled and a cream color. Is there any colors that you’ve tried from the Bis-sock that would be suit what I’m looking for?

Andrea said:

Hi Sam
I love Bonfire and Orange Sanguine! If you used one of those with vanilla in the semi solid color, I think it would be beautiful. You’d still get a speckled look through the vanilla because you are using both colors of the yarn for the majority of the garter portion. It would fade into just the vanilla at the end or you could also choose to keep a strand of the your orange till the end of the garter portion. That’s what’s so fun about fading! You get to play with color!! Hope this helps! Good luck with It😊

Andrea said:

Hi Donna!
Thank you, she’s very proud that her pictures are posted!

Helen said:

Hi Andrea
Your work is beautiful! I giggle a little when I read your postings. I love the humour you add to the art of knitting Makes for a really great read. I always struggle this time of year as to knitting more summer pieces vs cold weather knits. I hope to see some coming up soon to give me some ideas! Thanks for sharing your work!

Melissa said:

Andrea! This looks incredible. I’ve seen pictures of brioche before and it looks so beautiful. I’d love to try but I’m really intimidated because I’m still a novice knitter. Would you recommend this particular piece to try brioche? Or is there something else that you would suggest for a first try? I’d love to try it in shades of grey.
Is there a way to do this shawl without the brioche if that is maybe too complicated for me?
Thanks in advance for your suggestions!

Andrea said:

Hi Melissa!
This is a really beautiful pattern! You could certainly look up how to knit Brioche on YouTube just to learn the basic stitches and get a little practice first. But you’d be surprised because most knitter already have all the tools they need to knit Brioche. This was my very first time knitting Brioche. In saying that, the wonderful thing about this shawl is that if you get to the border and decide against it, you could do the border however you like because it’s done after the garter portion and knit as you cast off stitches. You could make a one of a kind shawl! Speaking of greys, Gris-Gris is absolutely stunning and would be a great starting point when picking out your colors😊 hope this helps a little and happy knitting!!

Ellen said:

What a beautiful shawl! I’d love to try this but it looks a little scary to me. I used to knit a lots years ago but life got in the way. I’m retired now so I may start again. I’ll certainly keep reading your blog so I can benefit from all your helpful hints! Thanks!

Murielle said:

This pattern is really gorgeous. I would like to knit a shawl using brioche stitch. The border makes this shawl pretty unique. You used double strands of Julirose to knit the shawl and then you did your brioche in aqua and turquoise. At least, that’s how I understand it. Can you tell me where I can get the pattern?

Andrea said:

Hi Murielle
This is a very beautiful pattern! I used Bis-sock in Cozy Speckled and Julirose for the garter portion and then Aqua and Turquoise for the border. Very happy with the turn out! Here’s the link to the pattern:—mingle-2
Happy knitting!!

Sheilahjohnson said:

I love your enthusiasm and planning. Keep up the good work. I knit left handed so most everything is challenging for me. I haven’t tried Brioche in awhile. I just may try again. Thanks!

Rachel Walters said:

That applied edge is just to die for!

Madeline Vinitsky said:

Thanks for the post. What a beautiful shawl. I also have not tried brioche but, this is so inspiring Love the border. Your little one is a photographerin the making.

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