Drape-Front Lace Cardigan
Julie's First Cardigan!

Elegant Shawl Pins - A new product review!

Romi_PinsThese distinctive and delicate shawl pins are from Designs by Romi Rosemary ("Romi") sent me a few of her beautifully handmade pins to try out and here is my official review!

I'll be honest.  I haven't worn a shawl in years, so the idea of shawl pins has never really caught my attention.  As a busy mom of 3 little ones, shawls are just not practical for my day to day.  And date night, what's that?

However, I've been thinking about designing a pattern with lovely draped fronts.  You know, the kind you see all over the place called "wrap cardigans" or cardigans with attached scarves or shawl fronts.  They are all the rage.Bird_Pin_on_Green_Cardi  

I finally had the time to knit and design my own version!  I liked how it looked with the fronts open and left to drape, but wanted a way to close the front sometimes for warmth and variety.

I wasn't keen on using buttons - even light ones would affect the drape of the cardigan. And where would I place the buttons and NOT limit how the cardigan could be worn?

Well, it turns out that shawl pins are the ideal solution!

And how are the ones from Rosemary?  Are they versatile enough to use on my drape-front sweater?  Read on for my thoughts!

Pictured here are 3 different designs from Romi: a Bluebird, Swirl, and Heart pin.

As you can see from the photo, all are delicate and eye-catching.  And as a knitter, I can certainly appreciate the handmade quality of these pins just by seeing them!  Up close, you can tell they are hand formed (in a good way!) and are really little pieces of art that you can use to embellish your knitwear.

The edges are all smooth and there are no weird corners that can catch and snag your knitwear (unlike your basic safety pin).  You can tell from seeing all of her designs that this was a very deliberate consideration! All of her pins have gently curved corners so they will work well with delicate open lace scarves/sweaters (though you still have to be gentle in securing the pin).

It does take a little bit of practice to attach them, and each one works differently.  The Bluebird design has a separate stick that you weave in and out of the bird to secure.  The other two designs have attached sticks that slide around to lock.

All of them feel quite secure once you get them in correctly. 

They worked nicely to hold the front pieces of my draped cardigan in place (see all the different ways I used it!). AND I tried them on a bulky yarn cowl to see how it worked. It was secure, although the delicate design is a bit more of a contrast when wearing the chunkier styles, so you would want to consider that.

And what do you do with the pin when you leave your sweater open? Stash it in your purse OR just attach it somewhere like an accent pin. No problem!

So, overall, I think these shawl pins are great and would be an awesome gift! I definitely have expensive tastes (Ask my husband) - and these pins are not at all "cheap" looking. They are well suited to your fine knitwear.

And yes, any kind of decorative broach could generally be used to close a sweater, but these are specifically designed to do that better with the smooth edges and ability to "grab" more or your fabric, so they can be used for heavier-weight knits or for some creative closures.

Here's an example of closing the drape-front sweater by gathering at the waist. Drape_Front_Cardi_Waist_500This would not be easy to do with a broach that has the usual small pin, but it was a cinch (ha ha) to do with the larger Bluebird pin.

See all of Rosemary's MANY shawl pin designs at www.DesignsbyRomi.com (her sheep ones are my favorite!).  Tell her SweaterBabe.com sent you!

DO YOU HAVE A PRODUCT FOR SWEATERBABE TO REVIEW?  If you do, please email me at: reviews@sweaterbabe.com.  Read the submission details.

I will be giving away the heart-shaped shawl/sweater pin to one lucky commenter. 

Just leave a comment about these shawl pins on this blog post by 9pm PST, September 30, 2009, to enter the drawing.  One commenter will be chosen randomly as the winner!  One comment per person, please.



Quite pretty. And perfect for the fall scarves and shawls.


Love these shawl pins, and I have been really into knitting shawls lately! I would love to win one of Romi's designs.

Lisa Joy

The pins are beautiful! I wish I was a more experienced knitter so that I could make my own shawls to go with them!


Love the shawl pins. What a fabulous idea! I would love to use them on a shawl!


I have been admiring Romi's designs for awhile. Nice of you to have a giveaway!


Swirl is pretty; didn't realize bird was bird; like heart best!!!


That bottom pin in the top picture reminds me of a treble clef! These are really cute, and unique. If I could, I'd make them myself! :)


i love shawl pins and have been eyeing Romi's for awhile. Thanks for the review!

Mimi Clark

beautiful pins. I just joined this website and I think it has very interesting ideas. It makes knitting and crochet so much more modern!


Those shawl pins are so eye-catching! Plus, they come in handy, haha!

v bryant

Lovely , elegant pins would make any girl feel good.

Deborah Masterson

These pins are beautiful! I love hand-crafted items, and it would go so well with a hand knitted or crocheted item. They are just made for each other. I definitely will be investing in these pins. Thanks for sharing!


Shawl pins make a lovely decoration on a pretty shawl.

Mary Helgesen

I love those shawl pins and will have to try them out.


Just finished a shawl and a pin would be a great way to set it off.


Shawl pins are not just for shawls anymore, lol!

These are really pretty pins, very "artsy" looking (is that a word? lol) I made 4 shawls last winter, too bad I hadn't seen something like this before I bought some boring wooden ones. :-(

Patricia Haller

I love those pins are so pretty and I have the perfect sweater to wear one on. Please pick me.


Pat Cowan

Great creation! Love that they won't ruin my shawls.


The pins are beautiful. Love the designs. The heart shaped pin looks to be a fantastic size for me. Great blog post!

Joanne Timm

The shawl pins are beautiful. They are also easier to use and work with than putting in buttons. I try to give a shawl pin with every shawl I make.


Lovely shawl pin :)


These are beautiful pins. I hope I get to find out how beautiful up close!

Renee Inez

I have been wanting to purchase a shawl pin for quite some time now. Having just finished a shawlette this would be the perfect time. Thanks for telling us about Designs by Romi. Beautiful pins.

Riva Blechman

I liked reading your comments -- you didn't wax poetic about the pins, but seemed fair in your evaluation! I like the pins very much and would think about buying one or two for myself. Thanks for your email posts. I usually learn something new. I've made a few of your free patterns and the instructions are very clear. Thanks for those too!!


The pins are lovely and make an interesting substitute for buttons or other closures. I would be thrilled to wear one!


I love knitting and wearing shawls but have yet to find a shawl pin that looks good with the delicate lace shawls. These are perfect ... elegantly simple and lightweight designs. They are definitely going on my Christmas wish list.


The shawl pins are beautiful and their simple designs lend them to use with shawls, scarves, sweaters, etc. I think I would even use one as a closure for the new bag I knitted this summer! I like the metal better than ones I've seen crafted from wood. I think the metal ones are more versatile and could be dressed up or down. Thanks for the give-away opportunity!



Carole Burkhardt

I love the look of these pins. When I was in South America this summer I saw them used all over as well as wooden pins. But these are quite delightful!

lolly gomez

These are a wonderful idea. I could even see them on a kniited hat or cap.

Karen Gilbank

These pins are lovely. I love their clean lines. Thanks for sharing with us! I shall have to look into obtaining some of these very soon. I really like how they will hold heavier knits!

Marj Winston

The Shawl Pins are a perfect accent to anyone's wrap without being ostentatious. They're beautiful.


Those are cute pins!

Isabel Quinta-Zammit

What lovely and unique pins to dress up or dress out any type outfit.


Both freeform art & function, these pins are great "whimsy" styled pieces...you could use these for a conversational glove back accent as well as a tiny small evening bag closure would be cute!

Kelli Ladwig

I appreciate how subtle the shape of the pins are. It would be a perfect closure for the wrap sweater.

jo madden

Wow, these pins are perfect and what a simple, but effective design! I hope I win one...xoxojo

Bethany C.

Love those shawl pins...they're so simple & beautiful!


I love the treble clef for my daughter, the singer, and the celtic twist for me. They are spectacular!!


Romi's shawl pins are beautiful works of art! I have been on a shawl making kick lately and am always on the look-out for vintage pieces of jewelry or indie designers new, distinct and different designs. Romi's sure do fit the bill; lovely and original.


OH They are lovely pins. Will you post a tutorial on how to make them.


What a beautiful pin! I am in the process of making a cardigan and I think the heart pin would be a gorgeous closure! Thank-you for the giveaway!

brenda caracuzzo

Hi, they remind me of constellations in the sky..such as the big dipper....and yes I do wear shawls

Jodi Huerter

These are lovely pins! I'm quite fond of Rosemary's designs!


Lovely, I also do not wear shawls, but I have plenty of scarves that could use a little sparkle. I will definitely check out Romi's website.

Anne M.

I love the contrasts: delicate and elegant lines make up the pins, yet they are strong enough to hold an adult garment closed; the hard metal material is used to hold soft fiber together. They are unique.


they are beautiful, and would so totally accent the shawl I have just completed.

Brenda Ganues

These look like the perfect solution and answer for many kinds of closure. Each one is beautiful and I would like to have one of each!!


Just beautiful, simple and elegant and if you arent wearing a shawl use it in your hair!


Have a shawl on the needles that would love to give this pin a home. Thanks for the review!

Pam Shelmidine

Just Gorgeous!! I love them! They make me want to drop all of my other projects and make a shawl!

Sue Horowitz

These shawl pins have won my heart. They subtle and sophisticated.

Kathryn Hilton

What could be more perfect than a heart to keep our lovely works of art in place above our hearts! These pins seem absolutely beautiful in their simplicity. They are a little piece of art all on their own! I would love one!


Thanks for the great comments! Entries for this giveaway are now closed. Winner to be announced later this week! Good luck!

ail inodore

Nice shawl and pins. A good matching!

Directory submission

amazing stuff

really appreciated


I'd like to thank you for the efforts you've put in penning this blog. I'm hoping to view the same high-grade content by you later on as well. In truth, your creative writing abilities has inspired me to get my own, personal website now ;)

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