Heirlooms Crocheted by Women in my Family

This is the corner of a tablecloth crocheted by my Norwegian greatgrandmother, Berthine. While its normal place is on an antique table in the front room, I hang it safely out of reach when my grandchildren – Berthine’s great-great-great-grandchildren – visit!

Here is a closeup of a fillet crocheted bedspread made by another Norwegian greatgrandmother, Ida. My grandmother told me that her mother-in-law Ida made two as wedding gifts, which would date them in the early 1930s. I remember it covering my dyne (down comforter), in my room in my grandmother’s house in Norway when I was a little girl. Today it rests on my dyne, though I fold it and take it off the bed when we sleep (and, of course, when the grandchildren are visiting!).

My grandmother crocheted this pillow cover for me in the early 1980s. It is precious to me and generally rests on the back of the couch. The grandchildren learned early that this is NOT a pillow they may throw!

One weekend as I looked at the beautiful pieces crocheted by my artistic foremothers, I realized that I rarely crocheted. Though my grandmother taught me when I was a little girl, as an adult knitting and weaving had pushed crocheting aside. Determined to contribute to the family crochet honor, I picked up some crochet thread and started making lace doilies. During the next year after several of my friends asked why I was giving them homemade crocheted doilies, my frenzied doily making came to an end. I still make them from time to time – just to ensure I haven’t forgotten how. And now that my hair is silver, nobody looks surprised when I give them lace doilies. 🙂


About sweatyknitter

Fiber art devotee, author, and amateur artisan bread baker.
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4 Responses to Heirlooms Crocheted by Women in my Family

  1. Berthine simply isn’t a name one hears much nowadays! I wonder if “Berthine” was anglized to “Bettina?” I’ve heard “Bettina” in the U.S., though not often. Thanks for visiting my post … come again any time. 🙂


  2. Dorothy says:

    OOPs, sorry….great grandmother! Have” aunt” on the brain, I guess. Just to excitted to see the name!


  3. dorothy says:

    Hello Karen,

    I saw your name and just had to find you! You are the very first person I have ever found with the name, “Berthine”!!!!!! I was going to ask how you got names Berthine, and as I read your blog I see you had a Norwegian aunt by that name.

    We have an Aunt Berthine in common…my only aunt on my dad’s side was his sister Berthine…and Nana (my grandma (my dad & Berthine’s mother)) said she named her Berthine for her two sisters, Bertha & Caroline. My aunt was born back about 1906(never was exactly sure) and died in 1968. Nana’s parents were from Germany. (daddy’s other sister, Dorothy, died in her 20s.)

    Anyway, when following a link to beehappydesigns, I saw your post there, and here I am!


  4. Pingback: West Coast Wardrobe Crocheted Lace Knit Duster | Ladies Shop

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