My Grandmother was an avid crafter. You name it, she did it.
Her real talent though lay in her beautiful needlework.
My Mum has recently moved house, and has gradually been unpacking long forgotten treasures. Mum lived for several years on Kangaroo Island, South Australia where she and her partner owned and managed a General store. During this time they lived in a tiny cottage above the store, that had magnificent sea views, but very little space. So a lot of what they owned, and what my Grandmother left when she died, went into storage.
When the store was sold and they moved interstate to be closer, most of this went into storage again. Now that they have bought a weekender, and they have ample room, we are able to go through all the needlework that was packed away.
It's sad that while she was alive I had very little interest in craft. Now I would love nothing better than being able to sit with her and be taught to crochet, knit or embroider. My skills seem so limited compared to what she was able to achieve. The reality is that I don't really have the same patience or attention to detail that she had.
We have boxes and boxes of doilies, laces, tablecloths and napkins. Some was done by her, some by my Great Grandmother. Not all of it is to my taste, and I think you would be hard pushed to find anyone these days interested in an afghan rug in the brown and orange shades of the 1970's. I won't even mention the nylon knitted coathangers and pattern books for toilet roll dolls.
After visiting my Mum over the weekend, I managed to come home with a bag of treasures again. Some lovely doilies, handmade lace, an enormous assortment of old DMC silks (but I did see mum whisk away an even more beautiful selection when she thought I wasn't looking) and the makings of a puppet theatre, whose materials had been bought long ago and put aside.
I originally had thoughts of repurposing them somehow, but the more I look at them, the more loath I am to take the scissors to such beautiful work. Hours of work. Perhaps some of the laces might find a more contemporary use, maybe embellishing a t-shirt or on a bit of bunting.
For now though, I am content just to admire them and miss my Grandmother just that little bit more. Oh, and be grateful that Mum got the needlework, and not the paintings......