Skip to main content

Ripples of Tradition

At his mother's wake, Tom was telling my friend Debbie that his mother was half-way through the ripple pattern afghan slated for the last grandchild to receive one of Grandma's coveted creations. Tom went on to say that he would love to find someone to finish said afghan as a wedding presentfor his niece, Beckee, because this granddaughter was engaged to be married in October. Serendipity took over and Deb told him she knows just the person, Crochetqueen, who might take on the job of finishing the afghan. The rest is "history."
Beckee's Ripple Afghan: 120 rows, 40 hours I haven't done the ripple pattern in years and crocheting afghans is not my thing, but the sweetness of the tradition intrigued me. Sixteen grandchildren had already received blankets and the bride-to-be was anticipating her afghan. Only 240 rows left to be completed were preventing the circle of love from being closed. No one in the family apparently has crochet skills, so I agreed to take on the job. It is a heartfelt story, and the finished afghan will be treasured for years to come. I gained a new appreciation for the ripple pattern as row by row, hour by hour, I worked on finishing the blanket on time. As the stitch count cemented in my head and the rhythm of my took took over, I wondered what else I could make besides afghans or scarves in this pattern? The experienced crocheter whose afghan I finished had a plan, and it was all laid out in a simple spiral-bound notebook.
Spiral-bound notebook A treasure itself, this notebook is a window into that grandma's life and her thoughts as she crocheted, including notations on a hearing aid and a casino!
Grandma's plan and notes inside As the afghan grew, I saw the plan as a very graphic and symmetric design. Strikingly beautiful, the interplay of the colors used in the afghan challenged me to come up with a color combination that suits my color palette as well as a design for something unique in the ripple pattern.
Pew Pals: little animals tucked into a pouch for entertainment during church When I delivered the finished afghan two weeks before the wedding, Tom and his wife were thrilled! Tom is a kind and gentle soul who, I believe, genuinely appreciated his mother's handiwork and knows the value of tradition in his family. He happily paid me more than I asked for, but it wasn't just about the money for me. To see a family value the creative hands of their beloved mother and to want to see that each and every one of her grandchildren had a lasting memento of her is a beautiful thing. I am glad that I have the skills that make me an important part of seeing this through to fruition!.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Part 1 ~ Irregular Expressions: a Mother/Daughter Team

Incredibly amazed when I discovered Irrregular Expressions and the work of Turkish artist, Sebahat, I wanted to know more. Following is the interview I conducted online with her and her daughter, Aysegul.
Crochetkween: Is Bolu, where you live, near any larger Turkish city that we would recognize?
Aysegul: Bolu is a small city midway between Istanbul and Ankara, we are surrounded with snowy mountains, dense forests and small lakes. 

CGOA Celebrates 20 Years ~ Part 3: Juried Crochet Art Exhibits

Saturday, March 29, 2014



In August 1994, I hosted 90 avid crocheters for a weekend conference at De Paul University in Chicago that included classes taught by Bill Elmore, Joan Davis, Arlene Mintzer and more;  a Keynote Address by Sylvia Landman (Crafting for Dollars); a lecture by Annie Potter; marketplace, meals together, door prizes a plenty. An optional tour of Lake Michigan on the Spirit of Chicago was offered along with an optional post conference workshop with Pauline Turner. The most ambitious of all during the weekend was the Juried Exhibit of Crochet Art.
At the time, I firmly believed that crochet art was an amazing way to educate people about the vast possibilities of crochet. It is amazing to see what can be achieved with just a hook and flexible lines from many, many materials. Today I still hold the same belief: crochet is as varied as the crocheter who does it. Crochet art, however, moves and amazes even the most seasoned professionals when they see how artists apply t…

Book Review: HAPPY-GURUMI by Vanessa Chan

“Cute” is the only word to describe the twenty patterns found within this book by animator, Vanessa Chan. As she points out, “There are endless possibilities to create whatever you want with just a few stitches.” You’ll learn how with these patterns ranging from easy to complex.