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A close family friend passed away last week (Oct 2013). On the wall in my bedroom is a plaque she gave me when I was a little girl. As Mrs. Downs, she was our school nurse and as Aunt Phebe, an honorary part of our family. Besides my blood relatives, she was the single most influential person in my life. Today in my journal, I wrote about her and the plaque on the wall that has kept me company for the last 40 years. It says,

If I can stop one heart from breaking,
I shall not live in vain.
If I can ease one life the aching,
Or cool one pain,
Or help one fainting robin,
Unto his nest again,
I shall not live in vain.
(Emily Dickinson)

Mrs. Downs did not live in vain. I can only hope that, in no small part due to her influence, I won’t either. RIP Phebe Downs.



Size: Approx 28 inches long by 66 inches wide
Gauge: Approx 8 sts = 4″/10cm

Exact gauge is not critical. Make sure the fabric is light and airy.
The shawl should be like a cloud.

Skill Level: Easy
Yarn: 1 skein of Plymouth Yarn’s Outback Mohair (70% Mohair, 26% Wool, 4% Nylon, 218 yds/100g skein)
Needles: Size 15 circular needle, at least 24″ long

CO 7 sts.

Begin Garter Stitch Pattern

Row 1: K2, yo, knit to end of row (8 sts).
Put a safety pin on this row to mark the right side (RS).
Repeat row 1 until you have have used up approx half of the yarn. Piece should measure approx 20 inches long. End after working a WS row.

Begin Eyelet Pattern

Row 1 (RS): K2, yo, k1, (yo, k2tog) to last 3 sts, k3.

If you have an extra plain stitch at the end of the row before the last 3 sts, don’t worry. Just knit it. This pattern is very forgiving and you should not get stressed out over having an extra stitch! I had one a couple of times on my shawl, but I couldn’t find any mistakes after I finished knitting and examined the shawl.

Rows 2, 3, and 4: K2, yo, knit to end of row.
Repeat rows 1 to 4 until you have approx 12 yards of yarn remaining. End after a plain row.

(Design tip: If you prefer, switch back to plain garter stitch in the center after working 5 or 6 eyelet rows. This will create a solid border at the top edge of the shawl.)


BO loosely. Weave in ends.
There is no need to block this shawl. Wash and lay flat to dry, if desired.

Lesson on Knitting Mohair




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Creative Commons License
Free Pattern: Aunt Phebe’s Comfort Shawl by Donna Druchunas is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Based on a work at
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