February 11, 2007
My paternal grandmother Quill -- the grandmother we used to sip coffee and puff on cigarettes with -- was a signature knitter. She wasn't one to try all the latest patterns, but preferred to stick to her tried and true. Grandmother could knit one heck of a beanie and could crochet a granny square blanket -- always variegated -- like nobody's business. She made beanies for everyone and blankets for everyone's babies. Just thinking about her beanies conjures up images of my dad with his striped beanie perched on top of his head raking leaves or playing touch football with us girls.
4 Needles No 6? $5.75. 1 Skein Sweater Wool (2 oz or a touch more)? $8.50. Grandmother's handwritten beanie pattern? Priceless.
Care to knit Quill's Beanie for yourself? Read on...
Quill Fisher knit many, many beanies. Here is the transcription of her handwritten pattern.
Knitting Directions for Beanie
4 Needles No 6
1 Skein Sweater Wool (2 oz or a touch more)
Cast on 96 stitches, 32 on each 3 needles
Knit 2, Purl 2, for 35 rows (or 5 inches)
Knit for 22 rows (or 3 inches)
Then decrease every row at each end of needle until 4 stitches remain on each needle. In decreasing, Knit 1, slip 1, knit 1, pass slipped stitch over knit stitch. Knit to within 3 stitches and knit 2 together. Knit 1
Continue this with every needle until there are 4 stitches remaining on each needle.
Break the yarn off, thread onto a large needle, draw through all stitches, draw stitches together smoothly and sew firmly in place.
French Relief "Beanie" for World War 2
Having her handwritten pattern is like having a bit of herself, isn't it? I have my Mom's old recipes. Love them.
Posted by: Gina | Feb 12, 2007 4:08:58 AM
Posted by: yuvee | Feb 12, 2007 4:30:51 AM
My grandmother made a fab birthday cake.
She baked one shaped as my doll's skirt, and
for my brother she modified a bunny mold to
bake a cake that looked like a cat. She
even laboriously covered a ping pong ball
with piped icing to look like a yarn ball the
cat was playing with. When I inherited her
hand-written recipie, I had it framed to
preserve it. It hangs on my kitchen wall.
The beanie pattern deserves a similar
Posted by: Barbara-Kay | Feb 12, 2007 6:09:13 AM
Thank you for sharing :) My grandmother crochets (still at 90!) and she is definitely a signature crocheter--she has made thousands of snowflakes, untold beanies and towel toppers, and the occasional water bottle holders when the mood strikes. I have her handwritten snowflake instructions and I agree--priceless.
Posted by: Kelly | Feb 12, 2007 6:40:32 AM
Lovely subject for a post. And I love Quill's penmanship! I agree with Barbara-Kay it would be nice to frame it.
Posted by: Nan | Feb 12, 2007 6:42:06 AM
Thank you so much for sharing that pattern.
I love Quill's handwritten directions. The
best patterns are the most treasured ones.
Posted by: Susan | Feb 12, 2007 7:50:10 AM
Thanks so much for sharing this with us. Quill's handwritten pattern is just too precious and I second the framing ;o)
Posted by: Maryann | Feb 12, 2007 8:24:35 AM
Her handwriting is so beautiful and elegant. Thanks for sharing the pattern.
Posted by: brooke | Feb 12, 2007 9:13:03 AM
Thanks for the pattern! My 96 yr-old Grandma Frances still knits: mittens for charity. She knits them on straight needles with a seam up the outside edge. She claims she has never knit on dpns, but my mom claims to have learned how to knit needles on dpns from my grandmother. Hmm... I'm staying out of that one! I do have her pattern for the straight-knit mittens though.
Your grandmother's penmanship is beautiful; it would be nice to frame the pattern.
Posted by: Brenda | Feb 12, 2007 9:22:04 AM
Could you check the pattern and verify the stitch count... says to decrease at end of each row until 4 sts/ndl, and then to decrease again until 4 sts/ndl! Thanks!
Posted by: Miranda | Feb 12, 2007 11:29:03 AM
oops... figured it out! Sorry!
Posted by: Miranda | Feb 12, 2007 11:30:04 AM
My Grandmere, a WWI war bride brought to the U.S. by my grandfather after their marriage in France in 1919, (he was a dashing soldier who swept her off her feet, apparently), was a knitting fiend, and knit tons of stuff for British troups prior to the U.S. involvement in WWII. They even gave her a medal for her war relief efforts. My dad has a wonderful 8x10 picture of her knitting. Funny thing is, I never knew this about her until last year -- seems as though she stopped knitting after the war was over, because we grandkids were not recipients of her handknits. My maternal grandma was a crocheting fool, though, and we all got stuff from her.... It's nice to have that legacy, isn't it?
Posted by: Mary | Feb 12, 2007 2:31:18 PM
Oh, how I wish I came from a line of knitters! My grandmother didn't knit and wasn't much of a cook, but she taught me how to play cards. Poker, whist, spades. You name it, she taught us. She should have worked in Vegas the way she could shuffle the cards!
Posted by: Brenda | Feb 12, 2007 5:07:37 PM
Nona, you brought back memories not only of you girls playing touch football but also of Quill, the gracious southern lady who could knit a mean beanie. I still wear the striped beanie as well as one with a tassel that Quill knit for me in high school.
Posted by: Nona Dad | Feb 13, 2007 10:15:51 AM
I also find myself filled with memories...baby blankets loved by both of my girls...Dad in his striped beanie (I think I wore it on occasion too)...cigarettes and coffee and Grandmother's distinctive script...How did you get so lucky to have that pattern?
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