Sunday, June 17, 2012

Channeling Magdalena

I cannot believe that I just spent 45 minutes writing my blog and with a click of the wrong arrow just lost it all.  There must have been 8 or 10 pictures which I had to locate in different files and poof.... all gone.  I almost decided to walk away from the computer and quit but it has already been 5 days since my last post.  What is worse is that I was done with my post and was checking to see if the link attached was working and then clicked to exit rather than the arrow to go back to where I was.  Oh well, that taught me to click SAVE sporadically when I'm doing my blog.  (like now)

This small rug or mat evolved because my friend Evelyn Lawrence gave me a challenge.  It all started when I was hooking the fox mat for Barb before leaving for Woolly Fox.  Evelyn asked the size which was 9 x 15 and she said that would be the perfect dimensions for her to hook up quickly.  She asked if I would draw one up and send it to her..... well of course, anything for my dear friend.  Evelyn is considering teaching a Magdalena Style class and thought it might be nice for students to see how a design can be done in Magdalena style and how each one might come out differently.  We didn't know how each other was going to hook our rugs but I just knew they would be different....and so they were. SAVE! (not going to lose this again)

While the hooking is done it has not yet been bound but was excited to share it with you.  This   piece measures 12 x 17 as room was needed for the corner swags and circle flowers.
This is what it looked like before sending a picture of it to Evelyn and when I saw the bright outline of the fox knew it had to be pulled out and rehooked with a more subtle value.  As you can see I also fiddled with the circle flower on the top left too.
And this is the style in which Evelyn hooked hers, more of a hit and miss.  Carrying her challenge to the limits, Evelyn said that some of the colors in her corner swags were mostly wool strips adopted from left overs discarded by hookers at a camp she attended.  After all, Magdalena used what she had and Evelyn was following in her footsteps and utilizing what was available.  Besides, it makes for an interesting conversation and example of using what we have available, when teaching the students.
For my rug I chose the design of Magdalena's Dog.  Obviously this rug did have color at one time but with age, sun, wear and perhaps even natural dyeing it has lost some of it's color.  But for me it was using larger areas of same color that attracted me to this design; that plus it would have color in the swags and circles.
For those of you who may be new to the Magdalena style or a little timid, an even more simplistic approach would be to follow the basic design with a center motif and corner swags with a solid background like the Magdalena rug below.
There are various styles to Magdalena's hooking, the one I did was only one.  There is also the hit and miss style in Magdalena's Eagle rug where she filled in blocks with color and using different values just as we are taught by teachers today.
It appears Magdalena preferred or perhaps it was out of necessity, that she used a hit and miss style most often.  oops, I see this next picture is laying on it's side but you get the idea of the point I was trying to express.
It is quite easy to take any motif or several motifs and make your own Magdalena style rug.  All one has to do is peruse the book researched by Evelyn Lawrence and co-authored with Kathy Wright, and look at all the ways in which she made her rugs.  Then you just pick out the style that speaks out to you.

Just remember to date your rug and put a tag on it with your name as the hooker, the date and the wording "Inspired by a design of Magdalena Briner".  
If you do not own a copy of this magnificent read with many pictures, treat yourself and order it today.  Here is a link where you can purchase it: .   I hope you have enjoyed this post and I fear that I've left something out that was lost with a click of my finger.  


  1. I did enjoy your post I have not hooked one of those rugs yet.
    I is so frustrating when you do something silly that wipes out your post been there done it.
    I am guilty of not signing or putting a tag on my rug.


  2. Saundra ~
    Oh, how I'd love to take a Magdalena course!!! Your little mat came out just perfect!
    Hugs :)


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