The Happy Hooker

milk jug doily

Crocheted Milk Jug Doily made by Abby

Crocheting is my indulgent passion. The repetitive actions focus and still my mind. Crocheting is meditation for me. Making time to simply sit and crochet for a few hours is my bliss. Time ceases to exist. At the end of a session I feel a deep sense of peace and satisfaction knowing that I am creating a work of art, a thing of practical beauty, that will last for many generational years; like my milk jug doily.

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Crocheted Doily made my my Grandma Viven

To this day I still use and admire my grandmother’s crocheted and embroidered linen. Intricate lace doilies  and exquisite embroidered tablecloths. I never met Grandma Viven but I feel a deep connection with her through her works of practical beauty. They have adorned all my homes since I was born; bravely fulfilling their primary job of protecting generations of virgin tabletops from unwanted scratches and those permanent unsightly marks from hot coffee cups whilst still remaining beautiful at all times. A constant reminder of my lineage. They were passed onto me when my Mum died. They will be passed onto my daughter, who thankfully loves all things ‘vintage’.

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Embroidered & Crochet Lace-edged Table Runner made by Grandma Viven

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Close up of Grandma Viven’s embroidery from a tablecloth

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Close up of Grandma Viven’s embroidery from a tablecloth

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Close up of Grandma Viven’s embroidery from a tablecloth

My Mum was a keen and constant knitter; never crocheted or embroidered. I remember asking Mum about crocheting and how could I learn? I was about 10ish. Mum could not teach me. There was no internet or YouTube training then but there was an old wisened lady who lived in the house in front of us; Mrs Bennet. She was REALLY REALLY old. We had never had anything to do with her. But somehow Mum knew she was a crocheter. She gave me a great life lesson on that day. She said “Go and knock on Mrs Bennett’s door, introduce yourself and tell her that you want to learn to crochet and ask her if she would teach you.” I was 10 years old. That was a HUGE ask to do all on my own. But my curiosity to learn how to crochet fanned my courage and I did it. The outcome? Mrs Bennett taught me how to crochet. She was delighted to be asked. All these years later I actually have no memory of what we spoke about, what Mrs Bennett looked like up close, what the inside of her house looked like (except it was dark, I remember that), where we sat, nothing. All I remember are the hands (hers and mine), the yarn, the hook, the stitches. I was hooked.

I was given two gifts that memorable day. Firstly, don’t be afraid to ask someone for what you want; it may actually make their day as much as yours. Thank you Mum xo. Secondly, I found my life bliss, crocheting. Thank you Mrs Bennett xo.

Now that I am becoming REALLY REALLY old, my vision is that I connect with my Great-Great-Great-Grandchildren; who I will never meet; through the legacy of my beautiful and practical crochet projects. Just like Grandma Vivien has connected with me and now her Great-Grand-Daughter as we gratefully use and decorate our homes with the love of our ancestors. Thank you Grandma Viven xo

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