65. Crochet–Getting Crafty, Granny Style

3 Feb

Photo by Poppy
Flickr Creative Commons

You can’t throw a sugar packet in a Seattle coffee shop without A. Hitting a knitting group or B. Being chastised for mishandling some of our Earth’s precious resources (sugar, paper). Knitting has gotten quite trendy here in the last decade, thanks mostly – I think – to the catchy moniker “Stitch ‘n Bitch.”

Well, y’all, Southern ladies have been stitchin’ ‘n bitchin’ for centuries. Where do you think all your grandmother’s doilies and afghans came from? Walmart? I think not!

Before I get much further, I must confess that I have never knitted, nor crocheted, and I don’t exactly know how to differentiate between the two. As near as I can figure, knitting is for useful items (sweaters, socks, etc.), crocheting is mostly for decorations.

When I was growing up, crocheting was at an all time high. In the 70s, there wasn’t anything that couldn’t be prettied up with a bit of crochet. Is that an extra roll of toilet paper? No! It’s a lovely doll with a crochet “skirt.” Is that your blender? Goodness, no! Apparently an adorable chicken wandered in and took up residence on the counter. Is your broom wearing a skirt? Don’t be silly. That’s Twiggy. You know, the model? She lives here now. In our closet.

I don’t know where the obsession for turning everyday things into art projects came from. Possibly the same handbook that taught folks how to make the ubiquitous Barbie doll bake sale cake. (Don’t tell me you haven’t seen one.)

I, myself, got caught up in the crochet/knitting craze back in the early 00’s when ponchos were all the rage (remember that exhilarating five minutes?). I hooked up with someone on ebay who knitted custom ponchos (and matching hats!), and went a little overboard, buying poncho/hat combos for my mom and sister and three for myself. It was almost like having a grandmother. Though I don’t imagine most grandmothers are compensated through Pay Pal.

During the height of my own crochet frenzy, I sprang for some beautiful (and none too cheap) Alpaca yarn at the Puyallup fair. It’s around here catching dust somewhere, probably still hoping that it will spontaneously become a scarf one day. Alas.

Over the years, I’ve toyed with the idea of picking up needles and learning how to knit one, purl two. And maybe I will one of these days. Just don’t expect to see me showing up to stitch ‘n bitch night anytime soon. However, if the stitchin’ is optional, count me in!

Do you crochet? If so, could you make me one of those fancy TP covers so I can deck my bathroom out in retro style?

18 Responses to “65. Crochet–Getting Crafty, Granny Style”

  1. prayersfromthepeanutgallery February 3, 2011 at 9:27 pm #

    What is it about the crocheting bug that gets the best of us? In my younger years, all of my pot-holders were crocheted; you can’t say no to someone that’s just made you a stack of crocheted pot-holders. Definitely must be a southern thing. I just wrote a post about old southern ladies, you might get a kick out of it.

    • girloutofdixie February 4, 2011 at 2:34 pm #

      That’s funny!

      When I was in first grade (or so) one of my favorite things was a loom, and I made potholders like crazy. I decided to branch out from my lemonade empire and sell potholders, as well. I remember being sorely disappointed that the potholders weren’t selling.

      In retrospect, I am amazed that people actually stopped for lemonade! I try not to ever pass a lemonade stand without buying something…

      • Hippie Cahier February 4, 2011 at 7:44 pm #

        Maybe you could have made the potholders a little smaller and sold them as lemonade coasters.

        • girloutofdixie February 7, 2011 at 3:02 pm #


  2. jenniesisler February 4, 2011 at 4:57 am #

    Oh my lord, this is so true. I remember my grandmother (from North Carolina) had a crocheted poodle of all things in her bathroom. I can’t remember if it was just a doll or if it covered something, but it was a poodle. I’m an avid crocheter and am working on a blanket for my sister. Just don’t ask me about knitting….it totally confounds me.

    • girloutofdixie February 4, 2011 at 2:35 pm #

      Oh, what I wouldn’t give for a pink crocheted poodle to sit atop my toilet!

  3. sarah smith February 7, 2011 at 5:16 am #

    Love your posts….this SO brings back memories of my mother (back home in N.C.) who always crocheted, and knitted. We always had some kind of knitted ‘toilet paper cover’ in the bathroom, and I would cringe when she would occasionally give something like that for a wedding or shower gift!

    • girloutofdixie February 7, 2011 at 3:04 pm #

      I would love to receive one as a wedding or shower gift! Quite the conversation piece…

  4. นิตติ้ง February 17, 2011 at 10:52 pm #

    The first time I saw dolls like the ones the picture was when my aunt crocheted them. But she died before she could teach me t make them. It is nice to see them again.

  5. KitschyCoo January 4, 2012 at 4:28 pm #

    Hello! I think it was all the rage everywhere during that Era. I was born and raised in Chicago and it seems as a kid I can go to anyone’s house and see a Poodle or Doll Toilet Tissue Cover. Also, everyone had Doilies, Doilies and mor Doilie yes even Mom but she did gorgous Embroidery as well. I desperately wanted a Bed Doll that all my friends had and I never got lol. I absolutely LOVE Kitschy Crafts. so if anyone would like to send me some instructions and or patterns PLEASE DO. ConniM1@hotmail.com

    • Kim Holloway March 26, 2012 at 4:12 pm #

      Love your name, KitschyCoo! I’m always amused when I run across kitchy crochet things, but I’m not crafty enough to make them myself. Although I used to make some lovely potholders from a loom kit when I was a kid.

  6. Conni July 17, 2013 at 6:16 am #

    Well I’m not from the South but from up North and I’m here to say that there was TONS of Crochet up this way too. It seems everyone did it along with the novelty items as Bed Dolls, and Kitchen Towels that hung from the Oven door and oh those adorable Bonnets and Poodles that sat on the back of the Toilets {love them} My Grandmother from Greece made such gorgeous intricate table cloths and sewed up a storm including Prom Dresses. Her work was exquisite! So I too love, love, love Crochet and yes it’s an addiction. I’ve taught my one younger sister and now teaching another younger sister.

    • Conni July 17, 2013 at 6:22 am #

      Just wanted to mention I LOVE Southern food. My Mother in law is from North Carolina and I absolutely love her. She is a little loud but that’s the charm in her not to mention her accent. I love it!

      • Kim Holloway September 4, 2013 at 12:42 pm #

        Hi Conni! Being loud is part of many a Southern person’s charm. I should do a post on that one day!

    • Kim Holloway September 4, 2013 at 12:41 pm #

      Hi Conni, I’m thinking maybe it was a 70s thing. Sort of like macrame. Lets hope that doesn’t come back into favor. I believe I made some awesome macrame plant hangers at summer camp once.

  7. The Owl Lady September 9, 2017 at 7:57 am #

    Reblogged this on Viv Drewa – The Owl Lady.

  8. Carmen May 19, 2018 at 7:19 pm #

    Do you have a pattern of dolls toilet
    My email is crcramos066@gmail.com


  1. Granny [Not So] Chic - July 9, 2012

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