Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Remembering Grandma: Post 3

A conversation with one of my friends from yarn group reminded me that it has been a while since I dipped into the box my grandmother left for me just before she passed away. I decided that tonight would be a good night. The items I have selected tonight are moreso items to show how organized my grandmother is... which might explain my mother's passion for lists.... and my own.

Laying on top of the items in the box was a small spiral pad of index cards. The cards themselves are yellowed with age and the cover (shown in the image) was dusty. The only marks in the dust were my fingerprints from picking it up. Only about 10 of the index cards had any writing on them - but all were the same: lists.

Each list was an item and a price. My grandma would do craft shows occasionally and this had to be one of the ways she kept track of the items she made and the cost of materials for each item. In it are lists for "Big Ducks," Indian dolls, crosses with hands, and blue bird girl. I remember each of these dolls... in fact, I remember all of the items in the book by title.

Her big ducks were just that - fabric ducks that wore clothes. They were about a foot to 18 inches tall. She created them in pairs and they got to set on little benches together. I thought I had a set somewhere, but I can't find them. I am hoping they are in the garage but I'm not 100% sure - which truly bothers me. They are something I would love to have now and kick myself for not knowing what I have done with them. The Indian doll was an American Indian looking doll she would get from the craft store - the kind you buy naked and then make clothing for them. She would use plastic canvas to make these elaborate outfits for them - beads included. She would do amazing bead work on the headbands and the deco on the canvas outfits was outstanding.

Besides her meticulous lists tracking cost of materials, inside the notebook were 3 slips of paper. One was a folded yellow receipt, much like you get from a restaurant - only yellow. I don't know what she bought abbreviated CC, but I know she bought 2 pair of eyes.... my guess those would have been for the ducks. The second slip, a tiny little slip of paper,  says "L 4, W 3.5 Slide 1.5 Clown" - my guess they were measurements in inches for a clown that I can never remember seeing. The last slip has everyone's name on it with check marks next to them. I can only guess this was her Christmas check off list for whatever year she slid this bit of paper into her pad of index cards. Everyone but my cousin Sam has a check next to their name.... I assure you there wasn't a year she didn't get a Christmas present. On the back of the same paper is all the names listed again. That, dear reader - I have no explanation. Grandma did things Grandma's way. *laughs*

The second item I pulled out, just underneath the pad of index cards, was a tin. I shook it and it rattled - so of course I was a bit curious.

I will have to put some time into this tin but here are some of the key marks if you are interested or want to look yourself:
- Assorted Toffee
- Dovedale
- Edward Sharp & Sons Ltd of Maidstone, Kent
- The appointment suppliers of glucose confectionery to the late King George VI

Cool - huh?

Even cooler is what is on the inside.

My daughter asked if she could stay up a little longer to get a peek at what was inside - and this is it:

The first item is a crocheted baby bib. It is made of size 10 thread. The main piece is white with a light pink trim. There is no button so I don't know if she made it but didn't finish or if someone else made it and she was using it as a guide. I don't know - I can say it looks kinda small for a full size baby bib but... who knows what she was making it for. It is yellowed and could use a good wash but I'll admit, I'm a little leary of washing it.

There was also an unused sleeve of elastic (that has very little snap left in it), a pair of blunt nose scissors, a plastic tapestry needle, and a yellow 6 inch ruler. There was also a hand pattern. I am not sure what it was for, but she used it a few times because it had pin marks in it from where she would pin it down to cut the cloth. I don't know if she were making hands for dolls or if it was a pattern for gloves. Who knows - its still cool.

There was also a paper in the tin with a list (yes, another list.... definitely a genetic trait in that side of my family). The list is nicely labeled "Crochet Hooks" and it is a list of hooks and sizes like H 8. I don't know if it was a reference sheet or not - but the tin was full of hooks. I don't know if the list was referencing the hooks in the tin which were used as general references... I wish she were still alive to ask. Perhaps its some organizing tactic that I should be doing too.

The hooks are pretty standard but there are a couple in there that I want to research the same as the tin. One is a Susan Bates hook size 0. It is silver in color but the two traits about this hook that make it interesting is that it has a tiny plastic blue tip on the back side of it (you can see it pictured in the tin image above - it is ust under the fat blue hook that goes under the ruler and pinky of the hand pattern. If you look just below it, you will see a silver hook and on the end, there is a light blue cap on the end. Its not the hook end - its the back side of the hook. It reminds me of a little light bulb at the end of the hook but I'm pretty sure that's not what it is *laughs* The second trait about this hook is that the hook side, from the flattened middle with the brand name to the hook itself the hook looks shined. Like it has gone through some sort of a buffing tool to make it look different than the rest of the hook.

All just interesting.

So what did I learn from this post remembering my grandmother? She was a very organized woman. She love lists, as does my mother and myself (although I hate to admit that hehehe). The bib, provided she made it, is amazing - more proof to her being an amazingly creative person and talented in what she did.

And that, my friends is my third "remembering Grandma" post... and I did it without crying this time.

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If you are not familiar with this series, please start with the introductory post located here.


florencefrazier2002 said...

What lovely items to remember your Grandmother by.  Thanks for taking us down the path with you.  My own Grandmother has been gone several years and I have things to remember her by as well.  

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