Splashed out on a Netgear hub and a couple of ethernet CAT5 cables from PC World. Removed the Netgear ethernet card from crimson and installed in chrome (the Windows 95 box). Assigned the following non-routable addresses:

Connected the two boxes via the hub, and could telnet into crimson from chrome.

My work laptop was set up as a DHCP client, so in order to allow me to easily connect it to my home network, I followed the HOW-TO instructions to setup a DHCP server on crimson. Worked first time - this stuff is easy!