Although prayers shawl patterns are easily found on various knitting sites across the web, the so-called original prayer pattern is found at the website of The Prayer Shawl Ministry. On their website, they also provide links to purchase books of shawl patterns they have published.
More than just a knitting project, the Prayer Shawl Ministry explains that these items are traditionally produced as gifts, with the comfort and healing of the recipient in mind as they are worked on. Small, personal details, such as buttons, beads, or feathers, reinforce this personal connection and make them unique gifts.
Knitters who wish for more patterns can find them at a site provided by the Warm Up America Foundation, FriendshipShawls.org. The popular author and knitter Debbie Macomber provides the welcome and introduction for the site, explaining that knitters can not only give the shawls as gifts but can donate them to nursing homes, hospitals and shelters through Warm Up America. Not only are patterns found on the site, but also stories of how the shawls have impacted people's lives.
The type of yarn needed for a prayer shawl varies according to the pattern, but as the Friendship Shawls site explains, certain colors are associated with specific causes or emotions; for example, white for peace or red for heart disease.