balls of string, darning, great-grandmother, Irish immigrants, mother during Depression, parachute slipcover, potatoes, repairing wool blanket, Saint Patrick's Day, wool blanket
Gram’s Blanket. Baking potatoes for our Saint Patrick’s Day party on Saturday reminded me of sitting in my Irish Great-Grandmother’s kitchen. She was a child of immigrants and a mother of three during the Depression. She saved every scrap that could be of potential use. I remember her balls of twine – meticulously pulled, knotted and wound from the strings on teabags. She had two pale pinkish slipcovers that she pieced together from silk WW2 parachutes. She showed up at family gatherings with paper bags full of costume jewelry and vintage toys for us kids, (which made her by far our favorite visitor). I loved her house and her strange and beautiful collections.
Gram darned little holes in this wool blanket thousands and thousands of times using different color threads. She was fixing moth holes, but the effect is the look of stars, or the ocean, or handwriting. I love the humble repetition yielding such beauty. She would like that the blanket has been saved and used by my children as she used it for her own.