14 August 2011

Torn table runner

This is from my grandma, given to me by my sister who ended up with it even though she had no idea what to do with it.  It's an old table runner, and not in the best of shape (large pic alert):
Grandma's old table runner
Here's the mystery: This grandmother was not the packrat - that's the other side of the family.  Along with the table runner were cloth napkins, and a couple are "orphans" without matches, so she didn't keep things just because.  So why did she hold onto this damaged, torn, and fraying table runner?  Was it made especially for her?  Was it a special occasion gift?  Did someone special give it to her?  I need to email my aunt and ask ...

So why am I so thrilled to have a torn and unraveling table runner?  At one point in time, this was a very beautiful thing!  It has cutwork embroidery all through the cloth section and is bound by what I now recognize as crocheted lace.  I'm not sure if it's linen or not (duh, have NOT done a burn test) but it feels possible.  I'm not sure if the cutwork embroidery is done by machine or by hand, but here is a closeup of it:
Cutwork embroidery closeup
If this was done by hand, the work was very meticulous.  The back side looks very similar to the front, although I can tell a difference between the two.  Now, for a closeup of the damage:
Damage to fabric and lace
I don't think I can repair the damage to this ... but I am wanting to make a replica of it!  I'll need to get a lot better with surface embroidery, practice cutwork satin stitches ... and figure out how to crochet lace.  Here's the funny part - last night I was watching YouTube videos for beginners how-to-crochet, and can't help but feel I have done several of the demonstrated stitches.  I know my mom crocheted, as well as knitted ... in fact there aren't too many textile crafts that Mom hasn't at least learned how to do.  While all the crochet tutorials feel familiar, I cannot for my life remember any object I crocheted.  I do know it was never lace ... I might have kept at it if I had learned to do lace.

So I have a long-term goal of learning enough to make a replica of this table runner.  This should make for an interesting adventure!


Rosy said...

OMG! How beautiful! This is a little gem! I am very excited about the idea that you reproduce this .... what is an ambitious project, but I am sure that with your skills, this will be easy for you. Looking ahead ...

glorm said...

It would be nice to know what she saved this. Maybe it was made by her mother.

I'll bet if someone did a Blogger search for "Torn table runner", only yours would come up. LOL

dfr2010 said...

TY, ladies ... this must have been truly beautiful when it was new. Rosy - I'm not sure about the easy part LOL but it does give me a goal to work for. The lace crocheting has begun here.