Sunday, February 20, 2011

Restoring Heirloom Crochet/knit pieces.

Good Morning Everyone,

I'm trying to think Spring even though more snow is forecast for tomorrow, so I thought green print might help. I can actually see green buds on my lilac tree, so maybe it will be soon.

About 2 months ago I received an email from a gentleman, who was looking for someone who would be able to restore two treasured afghans that he had inherited from a beloved aunt. The timing was so bad, I was in the middle of book deadlines and the holidays were looming. I wrote and told him that I would love to see the afghans, but he would have to wait a while.
He sent me photos, and even in the photo you could see that they were badly in need of repair. I eventually saw the pieces in person and they were gorgeous. One was in really bad shape, one much less damaged. I agreed to take on the job. I really was excited about restoring them.

The crocheted one, was made up of 1o4 squares, each square made up of 4 triangles, each one made separately and joined, truly a labor of love. This one was in really bad shape. In addition to many smaller damaged areas, I had to remove several entire squares, re-make them with new yarn and insert them back in place.
The first 2 photos are the crocheted one with a closeup of the triangles/squares.

The second afghan was woven, made up of 198 little woven squares, made on a small loom, then each square edged with crochet. Every single joining had to be reinforced and 6 of the squares had to be repaired. The last 2 photos are the woven afghan and a closeup of the small woven squares.

I love to do this work, even though it is very time consuming, because I really hate to see these cherished old pieces end up in the trash. I'll continue to make time for these special projects as long as I can, and right now I have 2 more thread table cloths waiting for me to work some magic on.

I delivered the restored afghans yesterday, and Mr D was so pleased, it made my day.

Have a great day everyone



Sandie said...

Beautiful! Did you take "before" pics of the damage?

lissabee said...

I did not know that you did this kind of restoration work. I can't imagine the amount of patience it took. Great job!

Melissa Prell

CrochetBlogger said...

Wow - what an amazing project! I've never heard of or thought about restoring old afghans but it makes perfect sense.

Anonymous said...

What impressive pieces. Could you give any details about how you restored them, especially the crocheted one? Did you replicate the original techniques or do you have better methods?

Unknown said...

Dear Margaret,

Words can't express my sincere thanks and admiration for the beautiful work you did to restore my family's antique afghans to their original beauty.

Your skillful craftsmanship was evident from our first meeting. But even more significant was your thoughtfulness and caring for these old treasures, hand crafted over countless hundreds of hours by my great aunt Mary likely more than 70 years ago. Although I never knew her, I know Mary would be even more delighted than I for the new life you've given these beautiful afghans that were sitting in a box o' these many years.

Margaret, my family and I will be forever grateful to you. Thank you, godspeed, and very best wishes,


Faith said...

you have a gift. I am certain the owner of these beauties was ever grateful.Thank you.

Christina Broad said...

Wow! Margaret.. What a job of work done beautifully.. It's so sad to lose such treasures so congratulations on restoring a lovely piece of history.... :))

KinnicChick said...

Margaret, first of all LOVELY work on the restoration! I'm not sure I would have the patience for such a thing. But what a gift to the gentleman. I'm sure he was very pleased!

I'm actually writing to say how thrilled I am with the book The Complete Photo Guide to Crochet which I picked up last week and only just had time to sit down and look through this morning. WOW. What a terrific resource! I've been crocheting for 25 years and have shelves filled with magazines, books, patterns, so many resources but I believe this will be my go-to guide.

Thanks so much for this wonderful reference!