So what do most people call this????

mrs lustig (2)


This 36 inch square tablecloth is one of the Vivian treasures.   I grew up with several dresser scarves crocheted in the identical pattern. I know that needlework magazines from the 1920’s used to give directions for the same pattern in a variety of sizes.mrs lustig

My grandmother’s friend, Mrs. Lustig made the dresser scarves and gave them to my grandmother. When my grandmother moved in with us, Mrs. Lustig’s hand work came too. We called them, Mrs. Lustig schmattas. Clearly this is not what this sort of work was called in the needlework magazines.



When my mother was here Thanksgiving she asked to see the Vivian treasures. I told her that I had a Mrs. Lustig  table cloth. My mother was really impressed.


I have made some repairs on the cloth and the sharp eyed among you will see that I have a bit more repair work to do.

mrs lustig (1)


I know that I will never find out Mrs. Lustig’s first name, or if she even had a first name. ( My grandmother and Mrs. Lustig only referred to one another as Mrs. Levy and Mrs. Lustig) But I hope that one of you will be able to tell me what this sort of crochet work is called.


  1. Hello Sarah,

    I believe that this is what is called "Darned Lace," and is worked with a needle and linen thread over a linen mesh fabric. Again, not a crochet pattern. I look forward to seeing more of your treasures.

  2. Hi Sarah,

    I also do not believe that this is crochet -- even though there is a similar-looking crochet technique that I know as "Filet-Haekelei" (I'm German originally). Looking forward to other treasures and other answers.

  3. my great grandmother called it "tatting" but for her the old country was Illinois, not eastern Europe, so customs and terms may vary.

  4. No, that is not crochet or tatting. Darned lace or drawn work maybe. I have a sizable collection of needlework magazines from the teens thru 1940 so will look thru them to see if I can find a similar item. May take a few days, what with the holiday and all. Beautiful piece!

  5. I just did a Google translate on Filet-Haekelei and it comes out as filet crochet. I did a Google image search of tatting and what seemed to appear most often was bobbin lace. I know that often these terms are flexible and vary by geographic location. From the input here and from Google searches it seems like filet lace and darned lace and Filet-Haekelei all refer to the same sort of work. According to Wikipedia tatting is this But I would not be surprised if tatting was a more generalized term for thread made hand work.

    marolosh - This work is sometimes made over existing netting, here the netting is made by the same woman who did the additional embellishments. A friend of my mother's did a very low version of this sort of work using nylon netting. Even as a little kid it looked to me like a fak-o craft rater than the real thing. I can see that using a fine linen mesh you can have elegant refined and beautiful work.

  6. The idea of making the netting on which the embroidery was to be done is just overwhelming. It looks simple enough, just a pattern of knots at regular intervals, but so time consuming that I'm not surprised that it isn't done more often.

    I have made a couple of filet crochet tablecloths and doilies, and they require paying strict attention to a pattern and reading alternate rows left to right and right to left. It's not the sort of work you can pick up and put down casually.


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