30 June 2011

Interesting story about one of the books!

Now to show you the one book which does for me have a story.

When I was in my teens and my gran and I were 'heavily' into tatting we suffered a real dearth of books.  We had the Penelope and Coats books which came out very rarely but that was about all.  

Somehow gran heard about the 'Every Woman's Complete Guide to Tatting Illustrated'.  She asked about it in the local library and about six months later they'd found a copy in a library 'up north'.  Remember that in those days everything was done by letter and/or phone so it took time.

Well we were so excited when we were loaned a copy for a month or so.  BUT that wasn't the end of the story.

A few years later and at the age of 70 my gran took a round the world trip with the main intention of meeting her brother Harold whom she hadn't seen for 40 years.  So she landed up in Australia where this book was published and where Harold lived.  Whilst there she 'advertised' on the radio and television for this rare book and was offered a copy which she obviously bought and brought back home with her.  I now have this book.  I did make a few things from it back then.  

Below is the copy I won from the Ebay lady.  OK, the cover is 'tatty' but the 'innards' are excellent.  I think I'll probably sell this on Ebay later this year.  We'll see.  

Of course we now know that the book was by Norma Benporath and has since been re-printed.  I really wonder how this copy got to dear old England - was it like gran's and travelled back with another tatter when it was new?  If only books could speak.


11 comments:

  1. Yes it would be nice if some of these old things could talk, I often wonder what story my grandfather clock would say.
    Nice to see an old book, even though its a bit tatty at least its all in one piece.
    Margaret

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  2. What a marvelous tale! thank you for sharing. Now I wonder, is this the same Norma Benporath book as the one I have in my tatting reference library? Must go pull it out so I can email you privately.

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  3. Old books are wonderful, especially if there's a personal story to go with them!

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  4. Wonderful story about your Gran. Thanks for telling it. Perhaps it really is her book. I assume you have scoured it foe any telltale markings inside...
    : ) Fox

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  5. p.s. I had a close look at that tablecloth! Imagine!

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  6. My first attempt at a comment didn't work. A very interesting story, I remember Gran leaving, from a port very close to where I now live. Also it must have been rare to be able to purchase a tatting book in colour back then.

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  7. What a great story! It would seem your grandmother at 70 was quite energetic - and embarking on a 'world tour' yet! I love that you learned tatting WITH her instead of FROM her! I can see the two of you going on the 'hunt' for the publication from the Library, and eventually gettng it - but only on loan! Then she continued the search in Australia - and found it! It's almost like finding the Book of Kells, or something!

    I've seen Norah's name mentioned several times in the blogs as Australia's tatting expert, so when I read her name, I said "Of course!".

    But what completely knocked me over was seeing that tablcloth! I always get weak in the knees when I see anything tatted that large. I can't even comprehend it!

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  8. What a charming story!! Oooo..and that tablecloth I will just say OH MY!!!!!

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  9. That tablecloth is certainly a "master piece!" With the threads they had in those days, it really was an accomplishment.

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  10. Thanks for sharing your books. I was given some old Workbasket books on tatting, also. They are treasures.

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  11. Hi Jane! That book's a real treasure, I was very happy to track one down on ebay many years ago.... Strangely, an old boss of mine did something similar in reverse to get me a Mary Konior book about 15 years ago....
    As for the tatting, not bad for someone born with cataracts, eh? =)
    If anyone's interested, there's more on Norma at http://www.powerhousemuseum.com/collection/database/?irn=319288

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