Inheriting Works in Progess

A few weeks ago I was blessed with a heapin’ mess of yarn from my Aunt Kate. She is, as far as I’m concerned, the authority on pillaging estate sales for craft supplies. Although she tried knitting a couple of years ago, it didn’t stick (much like my close call with paper embossing) so she is more than happy to unload all these fiddly knitting gadgets.

Holy Cannoli!

It's all mine! Well, I suppose I can share.

Vintage DPNs, old school Boyle circulars, and some hot pink lace weight

Non-Inflammable? Today's marketing would call it "Heat Sensitive".

Usually I craft by the credo, “When in doubt, rip it out!” But I’m a big softy when it comes to works-in-progress. Like many of you, I tend to feel a little guilty undoing someone else’s work-in-progress (WIP), especially when all the notions and materials to finish it are at hand. I know it’s not very productive, but it’s a feeling that many of us crafters get when we’re bequeathed a box granny squares that “only need the ends weaved in” or other large-scale projects so close to the finish line.

Take for example, this awesome zig-zag crochet project.

very zippy!

Normally I have no problem taking this out and turning it into something different. But the yarn is already balled and ready , plus, I love how the colors blend together. The only thing I’m not hot on are the dimensions; the pictured piece is not quite a lap blanket, not quite a table runner, not quite a beach bag . . . you get the idea. I think these colors would make a lovely beach bag or table cloth. I think I’ll put this one on the back burner for summer time.

Most of the yarn pictured in the pile is actually crewel yarn from my great grandma’s craft collection. There are dozens and dozens of colors organized on paper towel rolls. When I knew her, she had moved on from embroidering swirling panels of flowers and fruit to crocheting afghans for her grandchildren. She showed us how to crochet into the back loop and the back-loop-below – stacking crocheted rows like shingles –  to create a washable, durable, dense fabric perfect for potholders and other household cozies. (One of these days, I’ll put up a little photo tutorial for Great Grandma Mooney’s crochet method. ) 

Although currently hanging out in craft limbo, great grandma’s crewel yarn just needs the right project. The only problem: the yarn is cut into sections about two feet long. Working with sections poses a bit of challenge for knitting or crochet, since you would be continually adding strands of pre-cut yarn to complete your project. Perfect length for embroidery, or maybe even weaving. (I’m sure I’ll find a use for it . . .  but I am definitely open to suggestions!)

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4 thoughts on “Inheriting Works in Progess

  1. Wow that photo of the needles was so close I could see your finger prints. That’s pretty close! Thanks for reminding me of how you learned from the expert. You are so blessed to have Grandmas and Great Grandmas that were/are into fiber arts. So much to learn from these people! Keep it going!

    • Aww, thanks! I’m usually too impatient to set up photos in a well-lit area, so I was really pleased with how that picture turned out. I think it’s wonderful how different stitches or patterns can be shared across generations, making crafting methods family heirlooms in their own right.

  2. Pingback: Blogger Awards: Installment #1 « morganhausen

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