Monday, July 21, 2008

when I was a girl...

I loved my childhood bedroom...

Bear in mind, we are going back to the mid seventies here...

I can still picture it now... The walls are decorated with purple and white vertical striped wallpaper... There is a dresser which is painted white... and the drawers are purple... On top of the dresser is my purple alarm clock... On the polished floorboards lies a purple shaggy rug... And my bed is covered by the most magnificent knitted patchwork blanket.

I was so delighted with that blanket. Mum made it for me. I thought she was so clever. It must have taken her years to complete. Hundreds and hundreds of 'autumn leaf' motifs... individually knit and then stitched together.

Well, actually... it wasn't completed. She didn't quite get around to doing the edging.

aututmn leaves afghan - mum's

See the zig-zag look to the edge? Mum had made a bunch of half motifs which were to be sewn along the sides to fill in those gaps and give a straight edge to the blanket. But they were never sewed on... and I can't say I blame her... after all the sewing she had already put into the afghan, the thought of doing any more would have been a nightmare!

Unfortunately, the years have taken their toll on the blanket. Quite a number of the motifs have become damaged and are needing replaced. So this is my winter goal. To replace the damaged motifs, and add an edging to the blanket. It's the perfect project for this time of year. The evenings here are getting so cold now. It will be nice to sit with that blanket on top of me, while I make the repairs.

aututmn leaves afghan - mum's

I still have the original pattern.

aututmn leaves afghan pattern

It was published in the Australian Women's Weekly... August 2, 1972.

aututmn leaves afghan pattern

I was so inspired by mum's efforts that when I had my first child, I decided to make an 'autumn leaf' afghan for his room. I wasn't quite as committed as mum though, and I ended up with a much smaller sized throw.

aututmn leaves afghan - mine

Every now and then, I fancy making another one. I've been thinking that it would be quite fun to make about ten 'autumn leaves' from each jumper that I recycle... and then when I have gathered enough... join them all together into a spectacular rug. It would look magnificent, and have so much character!


Nathalie Brault said...

Wooo your mom sur was a patient one but that must have put a toll on her. Cna't say I blame her for having stopped. Good for you for picking it up after her. And I wish you luck and keep me posted cause I'd like to see your progress if possible. I really love that motif but I do admit you gotta be crazy to start one with no offense intended.

Lucky-1 said...

Well I'll be!!!

I have a pattern like this and I have bought the wool in green tones with cream colour to break the greens up.

Its going to be knitted up in the warmer weather and then put together just before winter.

laughing purple goldfish said...

the leaves knit up so quickly and use such little yarn each... it would actually be a good 'summer' project, because it isn't heavy work... it's the seaming that's the killer, but the result is worth it... have fun lucky!

Islagringo said...

Funny how what was old is new. This pattern was hot a few years ago and touted as something new on the scene. It was called domino knitting and everybody was doing it.

laughing purple goldfish said...

islagringo - I love the way trends keep cycling around... brings a sense of nostalgia and familiarity

Cheryl N said...

Love the shape of the afghan components. Where might I find the patterns or at least get a general idea of how to make them as the book is no longer available. I am a new knitter and would love to attempt this afghan - where might I find the pattern? Thank you so much - I have enjoyed reading your blog!!!