Newsletter 780

by Meg Strong

A Few Words about Mama Jo

Well. We hate to start this way, but there's no way around it. Our beloved Mama Jo - our in-Haus designer and Meg's actual real-life mother - left us this week after a nine-month battle with cancer. It was an up and down fight for her the whole time, and weeks would go by without any good signs at all. The bad news started piling up in earnest a couple of months ago and she opted to decline any further treatment. The upside of that was that the further she got from the chemo and radiation, the better she felt, so she was a reasonably good copy of pre-cancer Mom for a pretty incredible month.

For the last several weeks of her life, she worked on knitting a mosaic lap blanket and when that befloozled her, she'd pick up a washcloth and work on that instead. She was befloozled a lot towards the end, so there are a lot of washcloths. This is the one she was working on the night before she left us, right up to the end, as if nothing at all awaited her the next morning. She polished off her Captain D's two-piece fish dinner and a bowl of ice cream (hey, we said it was an incredible month), picked up her needles and started another "Grandmas Favorite" dishcloth until it was bedtime. We imagine it'll stay unfinished for a while, a little remnant of her last activity, a bit of proof of a life. We know that what her hands began, Meg's (and her brother DG's) hands will finish.

She was an amazing pattern designer - we have the samples in the shop to prove it. We're thinking about the best way to honor her in some official way here at Haus, but we haven't quite gotten our thoughts together about that just yet. In the meantime, grab your needles and cast on your own favorite washcloth in Mama Jo's honor. And the next time you see us, ask us about what an astonishing person she was. We'll be happy to tell you all about her.

Sea Isle

It's been two whole years since we last knit up an Easy Folded Poncho, but it's no secret we adore this pattern because we've hardly shut up about it since. We mean: there are moments in life when the mindfulness of knitting nothing but stockinette fabric is a treasure, and this thing is a treasure trove of it.

This time around, we've used Sea Isle from Plymouth Yarn, a worsted weight blend of 50% organic pima cotton and 50% merino wool. Its chainette ply creates a fabric that works up with loft and bounce. The Easy Folded Poncho is easy to knit (it's just one long stockinette rectangle), easy to finish, and easy to throw on!

Shop Sea Isle HEREYou'll need three skeins (two of your main color and one contrast color) to complete your poncho!

Want it exactly like ours? It's the Robin and Soft White combo. Follow the Easy Folded pattern as written while working the color changes modified as follows: 24 rows with MC, 48 rows with CC, 162 rows with MC, 48 rows with CC and then 24 rows of MC.

Soxy Six & Fuzzy Thinking

We chatted last week about Meg's big trip to the yarnapalooza in Chicago and one booth that stopped her in her tracks was Purl Talk! It took her a whooping thirty seconds to spy a zinnia-inspired bundle and a few minutes later, an order was written. In other words:they saw her coming.

Laura from Purl Talk handpicked these combinations of her Soxy Six bundles and Fuzzy Thinking yarns to create this 
Chevronica cowl! Mohair/silk yarn is held with a fingering weight wool blend to create that extra bit of cozy, velvety fuzz. Color change sequence options for the mini-skein fingering bundle are even included in the pattern so there's no guesswork!

Pictured combo breakdowns:

  • The Soxy Six in Rose Colored Glasses + Fuzzy Thinking in Bordeaux
  • The Soxy Six Shiny Bright Holiday + Fuzzy Thinking Cloud White
  • The Soxy Six Zinnias + Fuzzy Thinking Damask Rose

But there's even more! We had to have the whole rainbow of Fuzzy Thinking in the picture below too!  It's a whopping 1,260 yards (140 each) of nine curated Fuzzy Thinking mohair/silk laceweight colors.

Shop all things Purl Talk HERE

FO photos: ©Laura S. Gavins