Wednesday, 25 April 2012

My Crochet Heroes - K&C Blogweek 3KCBWDAY3

I was never particularly taken with my mom's crocheted tablecloths.




Too beige (or white).  Too rough.  Too...crocheted.

But then she passed away and these were amongst the things we felt most sentimental about.

And I grew older, and learnt to crochet myself, and for the first time understood the massive work that went into these tablecloths.



My mom bought it as a young warden, from the Kroonstad Women's Prison.  It was made by prisoners as part of the training programmes offered to inmates. The women worked for hours, doing exquisitly fine work, and could never keep wat they produced. 

I am now a very proud owner of one such tablecloth, and truly appreciate the dedication that went into it.



These women are crochet heroes.

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I have heroes in blogland too.  Oh, there are many whose work I admire, and Kristen of Cozy Made Things must surely be my blanket guru.

But.

Last year, this time, as I ventured into my first baby blanket, it was Jacqui of Bunny Mummy who told me, discreetly, that Crochet Has A Back And Front Side.

Whaaaaaaat?

I never knew!

(Okay, I was SUCH a beginner then :-D

I posted a photo where I laid out my squares, trying to figure out how to combine it, when she kindly pointed that out).


Thank you so much, and since then I have learnt such a lot, from you and many others.

Jacqui is my crochet hero.

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I grew up with the memory of a crocheted blanket on the back seat of the car: darkish green and old gold.  My grandmother made it for my dad when he was promoted to officer in the Department of Prison Services, in the colours of DPS.  She also crochet many baby doll blankets for me and my sister, and clothes for our Baby Love dolls - and sadly, we have nothing left of those. 

I do have have a batch of doilies, made by her, my Ouma Vlaggie, and my husband's Ouma Alkie. These will (one day) be stitched around the edge of an old vintage tablecloth that I have:


From my Ouma Nettie I have three of these pot stands, crocheted from cotton twine when she was younger and wool wasn't readily available to her.  I use them every day in my kitchen (and she also still uses similar!).


And from my husband's Ouma Corrie, I received this lovely blanket as a gift when my youngest was born. It is also in daily use on his bed.  Ouma Corrie turns 90 in two weeks time, and I hope to finish a cowl scarve for her. She has stopped crocheting last year, but still knits daily, and can do the most complicated pattern, from memory, while chattering away in company.



All the grannies are my crochet heroes, for the very fine work they did, sometimes with the cheapest and simplest yearn available, which we can treasure today.


13 comments:

Gerlene said...

We salute them all! I also have two of those pot holder ones of Ouma Nettie! Do you remember Ouma Vlaggies Symphony in purple blanket??? Wonder what happened to that?

Stel said...

Goodness no, thankfully not ;-) "Symphony in purple" scares me immediately :-D

Suzanne said...

Gorgeous post! You have some family treasures in your possession. I really adore the granny! Those colour combinations are brilliant.

Ana BC said...

Lovely homage!
Ana BC

PigTails said...

Great posting and woop woop since we are cousins I too have 2 of those doilies from Ouma Nettie.

Hmmm those doilies would make a most beautiful huge lampshade or two. I see they glue it onto balloons to get the shape . . .

Marie/Underground Crafter said...

What a wonderful post. It is amazing how sometimes we have to grow older to appreciate the hard work behind all of these things.

PigTails said...

I wanted to add too that crochet as diversion therapy is hugely successful among prisoners.

Rosangela said...

Stel, que espetáculo de crochê.
Lindo, lindo, lindo.
Parabéns.
Beijo.

Stel said...

Thanks all, obrigado :-)

crochetime said...

Your family is full of heroes. It's such a privilige to have those tanglible memories of loved ones. Lovely post!

Brenda said...

I really, really enjoyed this post!

Preeti said...

The table cloth is great and the doilies are beautiful!:) The colors of blanket are nice!

Weaver Birdie said...

What a wonderful treasure you have! And now you are creating more. We all were beginners and we all learnt and still learning through mistakes. I enjoyed reading your post. Have a nice weekend! :)
Shikha