Thursday, September 21, 2006

Why I crochet

My Grandmother (who we all called Dabby, for reasons not quite known to me but accepted as the rule) was a gun crocheter. She would sit and crochet tablecloths for hours, never used a pattern (as far as I could tell, anyway) and each cloth would turn out exactly the same. She made one for each of her granddaughters - there would have been about 10 or 15 of us (and about 25 grandsons - the male gene runs strong in my family - my dad had 5 brothers, my mum had 7 brothers and I have 4 brothers). I should have taken a pic to post (of the cloth, not the male gene!), will do that on the weekend.

Dabby died when I was 12 - my last living grandparent (and the only grandparent I had known, the rest passing away before I was born). I have always envied people with grandparents - but that's another story.

So when I was a teenager I decided I'd like to learn to crochet, kind of in memory of Dabby. So I went to an evening course at the local TAFE (techical college) once a week for a year or so, in a class comprised mostly of women more than twice my age. I really enjoyed it. I was pretty quiet (was always a shy child and am an introvert by nature) but I'm really glad I did it, and it made my mum so proud, and I think my dad too (Dabby was my dad's mother).

I was going through Dabby's old craft bag the other day (unfortunately, the craft bag has died too and so I was cleaning it out) and found a linen doily with crochet edge - one of my projects from my crochet class. It was finished except for the end being sewn in, and being blocked and pressed. I know it is old-fashioned but since I made it I figured I should at least show it off. So here are the before and after blocking photos. My tension was a bit tight so the pattern isn't as lacy as it should optimally be, but I'm not overly bothered by it. I have another linen circle to make a pair, but I don't think I ever will - it would never match right up anyway. Am having trouble with my photos so can't upload the close up of the post-blocked pattern (full size below), but trust me, it's a bit better than the pre-blocked!

I don't do so much of the lacy doily type crochet any more, but there are some really nice crochet patterns for bags and some baby things (bootees especially) so am getting back into it. I do have a lot of crochet edge handkerchiefs (another old-fashioned item) which I like to think are a bit more classy than a tissue. My mother-in-law has requested one for Christmas so will have to dig those patterns out. It's actually quite a good summer craft activity because you use a mainly cotton. You just have to make sure your hands aren't sweaty!

And on that note, I'll end this quite long post!

1 comment:

Bells said...

beautiful work. Just lovely. I have never done that sort of work - putting edges on things. I'm going to pick your brains.