Friday, May 30, 2008

"Once Upon a Time" rug?

I'm so excited! I just found out that I got into a class taught by Jule Marie Smith this November! I love the expressions in her rugs...borders, colors. Her rugs sing with enthusiasm for life! The class title is "Once Upon a Time". We will create our own design for the class. While many ideas are going through my head, I am drawn to creating a rug about some of my friendships.

Several years ago I lost my dear friend Mo to cancer. We shared so many wonderful trips and glorious memories together...and I miss her dearly. Without her I probably would never have discovered rug hooking. Yet another dear friend passed away just a few days ago. Donna had a wonderful life until MS captured her body, and after a time she ended up in a nursing home where she has lived for 7 years. Complications from gall bladder surgery just took her away. Other friends are alive and well, and I am blessed with their love, laughter and creativity every day. So I think I will make a "Once Upon a Time" rug reflecting some of the happy experiences I have shared with my friends. I wonder where that thought will meander in the next six months!?!

Next project

I recently purchased this pattern from Monika Jones (Folk Art Landing). I love anything patriotic and this pattern called to me. Although I have other patterns I have started, I decided that I would give myself a deadline of completing it by Independence Day in July.'s public so I have to make the effort!

My hooking is rather haphazard as I have a lot to learn, but I'm going to try and make my loops rather even and going in the right direction on this rug. I thought the color plan would be simple (red, white and blue, duh!) but realized nothing is simple. I wanted a light background, but needed contrast with the white of the flag and eagle. So I dyed a beige background that I think will work. I can outline if I need to for more contrast, right? The eagle is a challenge for me, and I don't like the neck feathers but will leave them for now. (Make note to try and take a Trish Becker class or other class teaching how to hook animals) Time to go get some hooking done!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Numerous projects

I am one of many people who tends to have numerous projects going at the same time. I see inspirations and often decide that I will be able to create their likeness with my own hands. Silly me!!! That is how I came upon the craft (art?) of rug hooking. My friend Mo and I had taken off to Vermont for a weekend to visit the Shelburne Museum several years ago. The museum was closed...but there was a sign that said "Hooked Rug Exhibit". Hmmm...I wondered what a hooked rug was? "Lets check it out!"

The amazing rugs and mats that I saw made me want to try hooking a rug, and the friendly vendors made it convenient to purchase my first materials. I purchased this pattern that day from Cherylyn Brubaker, and began a new journey. I spent a long time studying hooked rugs and learning their history before picking up the hook, and purchased several other patterns and learned to dye wool. I am lucky to live in an area of the country where wool is abundant. I began this in January and just last night finished the binding on it. I used Lopi yarn for the binding as I had it left over from making a sweater and it matched perfectly with the border. I have made very few mats but am pleased that I can see some improvement compared to my first mat. I hope to keep improving with every effort.


I have been inspired to begin a journal as there are so many moments that I wish to share with others. I hope to share the strength of my friendships, the challenges of my experiments and the progress of my numerous projects. This is my first attempt at blogging, so please bear with me as I figure it out.

Our critters are an entertaining part of our lives, so my first attempt to insert a photo will be of our cat Tiggy. Tiggy came into my life when I took a donation of pet food to the local shelter on behalf of my sorority Beta Sigma Phi. Little did I know that this tiny cat who purrs like a Harley would become such a part of my life. She is now 21 and still climbs trees like a kitten. She often acts more like a dog than a cat, and understands many commands normally reserved for dogs. Invariably she can be found sleeping anywhere from a bookshelf to my pile of wool to the top of the refrigerator. She is a pleasure.