Tejer y Poder

Stephanie Barragan

Interview with Elvia Leon by Rosa Leon

 I’m interviewing Elvia León, my mother, about her history in crocheting. She was very young when she learned how to crochet and it was something very traditional for her to learn. She appreciates that she learned something of use that became a part of her very day life.

Q: Do you know how to knit and/or crochet?

A: “Yes, I know how to crochet but not knit.”

Q: Who taught you how to crochet?

A: “My third grade teacher taught me. She approached me during recess and told me that all girls had to know how to crochet. And so she taught all the girls in class to crochet. They were able to produce a lot of different pieces that were displayed in their school and people came to see them and photographed their work. We were very proud.”

Q: How old were you when you started crocheting?

A: “I was about 11 years old. I’m 49 now and I still crochet now and then, so I’ve been doing this for a very long time….38 years.”

Q: What does crocheting mean to you?

A: “For me it means a lot.  I feel very proud as a woman to be able to accomplish many things. I felt very happy because that very same year that I learned to crochet I completed two blankets own my own.”

Q: What was your favorite thing to crochet?

A: “Blankets, ponchos, rebozos, baby clothes, baby blankets, shoes, dresses, and lots and lots of doilies.”

Q:  What was your favorite color to crochet with?

A: “My favorite color was brown and a melon/peachy color.”

Q: Did anyone else within your family know how to knit and/or crochet?

A: “I only had one aunt that knew how to knit. She made sweaters, a lot of sweaters. People requested sweaters and she would sell them. And my mom knew how to crochet. She bordered cloth diapers and sheets, but she’s not the one who taught me.”

Q: Have you kept any of your beginner work?

A: “No, when I got married my mother kept them all, except for a table cover. And so I brought it along with me.”

Q: Do you think it’s important to pass down this knowledge to your daughters?

A: “I would like it very much if one of my daughters or all three would learn this kind of art and who knows; maybe they could make a business out of it and sell their products.”

By: Rosa León