“Can you fix this?” Eldest son handed over his cherished childhood blanket crocheted by his Grandmother more than forty years ago.
It is with trepidation I eye the repair needed in one of the blanket squares. The decades old wool has frayed at one point and the thread has unravelled.
My mother-in-law was much admired for her woollen handcrafts. She knitted delicate baby garments on fine needles, soft toys, patterned children’s jerseys. Much of her work was created without a printed pattern. Her knitting needles were always in use. Her nimble fingers were never idle, her mind ever sharp as she checked tension and mentally calculated size and counted stitches and rows. She also sewed, did embroidery and crochet work.
The blanket in question I remember being created from scraps of wool accumulated over the years. I remember seeing how a strand of wool, looping over the fingers of her left hand, was pulled in nimble, quick repeated movements as she plied the crochet hook with the fingers of her right hand. I even did a bit of the crochet work as we chatted though handwork is not really my thing.
Both my now adult sons have kept their blankets and their special soft toys created for them by their much loved Grandma. Her legacy lies in scraps of wool transformed into squares and stitched together with love by her hands. M-i-L knitted well into her eighties. Her fingers and hands did slow up in her last years but she got the item finished.
I sorted through M-i-L’s old knitting needles and crochet hooks. I have been practising and training my hands to do basic crochet work. The repair will happen. I do not pretend to be deft and quick as my M-i-L when doing crochet handwork. My fingers are not as agile.