Scratching the Knitting Itch
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Prince William’s Shawl

There have been a few queries coming through lately about Prince William’s shawl, designed, spun and knitted by Margaret as a commission from the High Country Sheep Breeders of New Zealand in 1982, as a presentation gift on the occasion of the prince’s christening.

As it was a private commission the pattern cannot be sold, however Wrapped in Lace does feature a pattern that uses components of the designs.

Last year I wanted to find out where the shawl was held, as we only have average photos of it, and I thought it would be wonderful to see it while I was in the UK. Sadly I didn’t get very far on the hunt, but i’m determined again to track it down.

The information I have from Margaret is that it is in the private collection of the Prince of Wales. It toured Britain in an exhibition of official gifts during the period following Prince William’s birth but she has not heard of it being in an exhibition since then.

The only contact details I can find for Wills is a postal address and phone number, so it looks like i’ll be writing some letters! There is a brain I can pick in the Te Papa textiles department, so at least that is a start…i’ll keep you posted on the hunt!


For an updated blog post on the shawl and the one presented to the Duke & Duchess of Kent on the arrival of Prince George, see here. You can purchase Artisan Gossamer Lace to knit the Filmy Fern shawl with from our online shop.


1 Celeritas2 { 11.19.10 at 1:01 am }

Good luck on the hunt Tash! I’m sure it will still be around.

2 Sonja { 11.19.10 at 2:19 am }

Just as a point of clarification – the pattern was never written down. The Bush Bouquet Christening Coat ( which is in the family collection pictures on Margaret’s website is the prototype. It was made for Tash’s older brother David who is a month older than Prince William. If you look closely you will see that the shawl basically uses repeats of the back and adds an extra border. Several of the key lace patterns (kowhai and rata in particular) have gone through several versions before they ended up being used in Wrapped in Lace so while it might be possible to create something a bit like the original shawl (with permission from the owners) – like a painting – it is an original piece of art.

However while she was visiting me last week, Margaret had found some rough early sketches of the original Rata Shawl – also in the portfolio, from my collection, and one of my favorites. She is working on recreating a charted pattern for that – which (if you all ask very nicely) we are hoping to make available for sale.

3 Tash { 11.19.10 at 2:52 am }

Thanks for the extra info! It’s nice to pull it all together in one place.

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