Finished at last! The christening shawl is based on a commercial pattern (Patons Heirloom Treasures Number 759) with major changes by Karen and me. Thank you, Karen!
Finished dimensions are a little over 60" on a side, and it weighs just under 500 grams. It took me just about a year to finish. The yarn I used is Wendy's Peter Pan 2-ply, now discontinued, on 4.5mm needles.
The border is a variation on Barbara Walker's Bear's Track pattern; the center section is Walker's Orchid pattern (2:309).
I didn't like the original border corner treatment, nor the fact that the original interior pattern didn't line up with the border motifs. Nor did I want to knit it in pieces and sew it together. My friend Karen redesigned the entire thing so it could be knitted in one piece from the outer perimeter to the center. I will never do it again, for several reasons: 1, casting on 1372 stitches and joining them without a twist is difficult, to say the least (thank you, Joan); 2, knitting down to zero when it's not possible to use either double pointed needles or two circulars caused real problems: the weight of the needles caused severe laddering, so I had to double-knit the final 88 stitches which meant there was no way to tell if I had made a mistake until I finally took it off the needles at the end.
The slightly "whiter" stripe is because half of one skein was slightly thicker yarn than the rest of it. It wasn't visible while I was knitting, and there was no time left to take it out.
Karen's Beautiful Corner. Isn't this better than plain garter stitch?
I pretty much followed the pattern for the gown, with only a few minor changes, like grafting the shoulder seams instead of sewing them.