Old crafts seem to be disappearing nowadays

After my aunt died earlier this year, my brother, his wife, and I went through her belongings and keepsakes. It was quite revealing about my aunt.
She liked fine clothing. She enjoyed jewellery. She read a great deal. And she had fine taste in painting.
She also had collected many needlepoint pictures—some dating back to the turn of the last century.
In her drawers, she had many handmade tablecloths. Some were made by my Grandmother Cumming. She also had a collection of doilies, which had been tatted by my other grandmother.
She also had quite a collection of needlepoint. One of her prized possessions had been produced in a B.C. prison and the needlepoint appeared to have been done with single threads of silk.
The tatted doilies, as I have since learned, make for a fine durable lace. My Grandmother Kleven used a tatting shuttle to make her pieces. I have a fine piece of her craft framed and hanging on my wall.
Tatting goes back more than 200 years and the pieces of lace often were made by sailors, who brought them home to their wives.
Aunt Georgina had several crocheted table cloths. I remember my Grandmother Cumming would always have one on her table. It was ivory coloured.
It, too, got its start some 200 years ago—and gained preference as a less costly way of producing lace.
Both crocheting and tatting gained great favour in the 1920s. It was a skill learned by my grandmothers and is seldom passed on to later generations.
It is a craft that seems to be disappearing, yet was very important in decorating homes.
Another craft that seems to be disappearing is both needlepoint and petite point. My aunt had several pieces in her possession, with perhaps the biggest being a work of art of poppies sitting on a table.
There was the “Pink Lady” and the “Blue Boy” needlepoint of my grandmother. An even much older piece was a deer that had been stitched by my great-grandmother.
Many of those needlepoints really were copies of real paintings that hung in galleries that women, and occasionally men, reproduced using thread. Often they hung in prominent locations in homes, and were treasured gifts given at weddings and special occasions.
Today, in our hurried up lives, the art of needlepoint, cross-stitching, tatting, and crocheting seems to be disappearing. One can find many similar items in stores, imported from China, India, and the Far East.
They are much less expensive, and can be thrown out should they become damaged.
The needlepoint picture is seldom seen today in homes. Those craft works have been replaced by copies of real paintings that often are hard to tell from the original.
Having those pieces of craft has connected several generations together. Each piece is unique.

Posted in Uncategorized