When I was a little girl I used to visit my Grandma M with my grandfather, every week. Even though we all called her Grandma, she was actually my great-grandmother. And in so many photos of my childhood, on the back of the various sofas we’ve had, there was usually one or two of my Grandma M’s blankets. She was a prolific quilter (as I’ve blogged about before), but she was also an excellent crocheter. This is the one afghan of hers that I have – Grandma’s afghan.
I sometimes daydream about all the wonderful chats we would have and the crochet times we could have spent together if she were still alive. I wonder the tricks and tips she could have taught me, and I would have loved to have seen her vintage pattern collection. I still remember the smell of her house… the cozy setup in her living room… the cookies she would bake for all the great-grandkids.
It doesn’t seem like that long ago, but she passed away when I was just a little girl, which means that this afghan of hers must have been made at least 40 years ago. That boggles my mind, because it’s in almost pristine condition! Besides some lint and discoloration on the yarn over the years, there’s not one loose strand or gap in the assembly.
So this is my Grandma M’s afghan. It’s the only one I have, and besides the quilt, that’s all I have of her at all (besides memories and photographs). But it’s a precious heirloom that I love dearly.
I don’t know what pattern this is, although I have seen similar ones here and there (and if you happen to come across a similar one, do let me know!). It doesn’t look too complicated, but the craftsmanship is astounding. We don’t treat this – or the quilt – like heirlooms around here. My kids use it when they make their blanket forts, the quilt is cuddled under on chilly nights, and both blankets make their way from one bedroom to another on nightly rotations.
I think she would have liked it that way. I don’t think that putting these up on display, away from little pawing fingers and away from winter snuggles would be what she wanted. After five children, 20 grandchildren and dozens of great-grandchildren, something in me thinks that she knew that a soft, sweet afghan like this would attract children. I think she knew that her creations would have to be durable enough to wrap several generations up in warmth… even decades after she had gone.
Thank you, Grandma M, for this wonderful treasure!