Tuesday, May 31, 2011

I just Love Days like this one

I sure do love special days like this.  It isn't my birthday, it isn't Christmas ~ I know that for a fact because it is as hot as Hades outside with record breaking temps.  But it was like both days rolled into one because I had packages to open. 

Today as I'm walking the mile to and fro my mailbox in the heat and humidity (but on the shady side of the street) I see the UPS man pull into my driveway......YAAAAYYY, my BeeCreek floor frame had arrived.    Let me tell you that I think I've owned probably every brand of frame and stand there is and that includes lap frames, different sit-upons and floor frames.  Some I still have and others I've sold.  But you know how it is ~ you see something new and you just must have it. 

Well at Barb's rug camp two of my gal pals had their Snapdragons on a BeeCreek floor frame and when I saw theirs was adjustable AND sturdy, I just had to place my order for one upon coming home.  So it is now assembled and will take it for a test drive later as I've got to pull some loops on my Sincerely Jane challenge rug since new pictures need to be posted tomorrow on Rughookers Yahoo.  So here is that new toy...er, equipment.

The other package was a special treat and gift from none other than Lauren and was blown away by her very generous nature as I'd coveted it when I saw that Courtney had been a recipient of one a few weeks ago. Matter of fact was even willing to buy one or to buy the equipment to make one for myself, but that seemed a little silly as it would require numerous tools I'm sure, not to mention I've no clue how to do them anyway. 

Thank you Lauren. I will be wearing this to all the rug camps I attend but will also wear it this Thursday when I have lunch with a bunch of my classmates from the class of '59. They tease me about being a hooker so will advertise my passion by wearing this that day. 

Guess I'd better get my salad made so I can sit and hook on my new toy.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Memorial Day

Hey, how 'bout that..... I got my followers back.  Let's see if everything else works.

Yesterday I sat up a booth at the local Heritage Day Celebration.  When I looked at the weather report in the morning it said 10% chance of rain until noon and then it spiked to 45% between noon and 2 p.m.  I do have a canopy but since most of my hooked rugs that I offer for sale were on display at the library I only planned to take a few hooked pieces and mostly my Americana items and few primitive dolls.  Besides, if thunderstorms were fast approaching I didn't want to be attached to metal framing of a canopy and be a lightening rod attraction ~ I wanted to get out of Dodge fast.  However I did take a couple plastic tarps to cover things if I needed.

I took two tables; this is one table with my lattice work around it for hanging some items.
This other table was to my left so that I could sit in the shade between the two and demonstrate how to hook, should someone have an interest.  And as you can see I had a front row seat to the music.  Luckily the band was very good and not extremely loud and kept my feet tappin' to the rock n roll I remember so well.

In the foreground is a lady who is caning a chair and just beyond her is a basket weaver.  

There was also a soap maker, blacksmith and of course one of my favorite animals.... horses.  There were two horse drawn carriages and it only cost $4 per ride around the mansion property; can you imagine what the cost would be for a similar ride in Cape May, NJ or New York?

When I was a teen I had my own horse, which  my father sold just before my 16th birthday without my knowledge.  I came home from school one day and there was Richie tethered to a wooden slat of a truck.  He neighed and I cried but no matter how much I begged my father to not sell him back then a kid just didn't challenge the parent.  He said I'd be wanting a car not a horse and tho I tried to convince him that I didn't need my own car my words went on deaf ears.  I used to love lifting up his mane and smelling that sweet horse smell which was captured and contained under the confines of his mane.  Mmmmmmm, fond memories.

Now, listen to this..... this was in 1958 and you know what kind of car I got for my horse?  A 1948 Plymouth.  Yeah, that's right.  All my other friends had the fan tail Chevy's and Fords and mine was 10 years older, no signals, smelled like oil, had the knob to prime it for starting (dang, forget the name of it now).  But of course now I wish I had that old 1948 vehicle.

So then yesterday I had a glorious day petting and sniffing every horse on the premises.  The ponies below were, with the exception of the two taller horses, had all been rescued as told to me by the owner.  He explained how emaciated they once were and were going to be sold for dog food; but just look at them now.  Perhaps they all knew how fortunate they were to have been found and cared for in a loving way as they were the sweetest little show offs.  One, would even stop and smile when it saw someone getting ready to take it's picture.  I didn't believe it but was confirmed by an attendant there as well.

The horse in the background is Toby and the rest are his harem.  Toby was also a wonderful horse.  Felt so good to feel the powerful muscles and rub their velvety muzzle, and enjoy the sweet aroma of horseflesh and leather.  Ahhhh,

So then yesterday was not a total wash out, even tho about 1:45 I had to scramble and yank everything hanging and cover it with my tarps while it poured for about 5 minutes.  Luckily the music and food tent was close by which is where I retreated during the cloud burst.

Happy Memorial Day to everyone and God Bless those of you who are now serving or have served in the military to keep our country free.  And God Bless those who made the ultimate sacrifice of giving up their life in defense of our United States of America.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Sincerely Jane Update

Well I'm not sure this will be a successful post since Blogger has had a melt down of sorts over the last two weeks but here we go.  Since it is near June and I'm supposed to post a current picture of my accomplishments on Rughookers Yahoo thought I'd better pull a couple loops. 

Now, really folks, I'm yearning to hook on my E.S. Frost Sheep rug but still other responsibilities are close at hand.... for instance, tomorrow I have to set up at 8 a.m. for the Heritage Day festivities where there will be civil war reenactors, mansion tours, horse drawn carriages, olden timey crafts like broom makers, soap makers, basket weavers, to n ame a few and............ uhhhhh, rug hookers.  So my van is packed and I'm taking something completely different to hook while there so it will give others an opportunity to pull loops on a rug.  Well, I certainly don't want any newbies pulling loops on my sheep so will take a generic piece for them and me.

So, here is what the Sincerely Jane piece looks like now.
And as you can see, I've completely changed my 2" border to a 3" border.  The reason for that is because the hooked squares are 4.5" wide and the 2" wide border was not pleasing to the eye.  I hooked some places and ripped it out.

On the other hand, I couldn't have a wide border as with Jane Stickle's quilt because my rug is too small to take such a commanding wide border.  But it did require at least a 3" border and as wide as the 4.5" squares to make it pleasing to the eye.    The other issue is that I cannot choose any of Jane's border designs because my rectangles are too small to accommodate that~ ~ ~  so I'm having to design my own simplistic designs.

Hopefully Blogger will geth their 'slip' together so we can have full access to this communication.  And I just did the spell check and no yellow popped up.  So then I purposefully mis typed a word and did the spell check again and NOPE!  Didn't recognize the misspelled word.  So don't know what you'll see or what you'll read but I'll attempt to publish the post right now.

Over and out!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

The Woolley Fox Project

Okay, okay, I can't stand holding back any longer.  My intentions were to not post a picture of the project I started at Barb's until I'd had a chance to hook some more in the rug but I'm going thru withdrawals with not hooking on it and thought I'd look at it and dream of me hooking.  But I've been so busy with orders, with yard work, getting ready for a show this weekend at our local Heritage Day, where there will be civil war reenactors, olde timey crafts, antique car show, horse drawn carriage rides, and tour of the Ross Mansion.

So here is what I started.  This is from the antique rug designed by E.S. Frost.  Barb was saying that years ago when scrolls were first done by our foremothers that they used whatever colors they had left over and that the fancy fine hooked scrolls came later with Pearl McGowan.  So the random use of complimentary colors which will repeat themselves around in random order will be the scrolls for this piece.

The background will be a soft black.  Sorry for the blur I've a doctor's appointment this morning and maybe later today I'll replace the picture with a better one.  But for now, since I'm in a hurry this will have to suffice.

Waaaahhhhhh, I want to hook.  At this particular time I don't even feel like I'm a 2 minute hooker, let alone a 10 minute hooker.  And I used to hook at least 2 to 3 hours per day. 

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

More of Woolley Fox camp

Thought I'd post a couple more pictures taken at Barb Carroll's Woolley Fox.  Believe it or not I have not pulled one loop on the rug I started at the mini-camp because I've been so busy since coming home.  And let me tell you I'm not the least bit happy about that because I am dying to put it back on a frame and get a little more hooked so I can share my rug with you.  However, I will share a few more pictures that were taken at Barbs.

This one below you are probably familiar with.....Sante Fe Crossing.  It is at the top of the stairs on the second floor and makes a great showing as it takes you to the various other rooms filled with antiques and wonderful hooked rugs.

Barb loves and collects all things related to critters (bears, rabbits, pigs, horses) and also loves and collects things relating to the Ark.  This is a hooked piece which is over the door which leads from the living room to the dining area (left to the bookshelf) where we have lunch each day with Barb.
And I did find another picture I took of her wool room and where she does the color planning for a rug.  Barb's station and work area for color planning is to the left behind the antique bird cage.  Those two rooms in the back are all filled to the gills with various colors of wool, and there is more behind me which I don't think I did get a picture of.  It might look a little ramshackle here but believe me when I say that she can decide what piece of wool she wants and can walk straight to it.  So it is very organized and by color. 

I am already looking forward to another class with her next May.  Hope you have enjoyed the tour.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Home from Camp

Oh my goodness but it was great being at Woolley Fox again and Barb did her magic with each of our rugs.  You realize, of course, that I didn't get the rug done yet since it was only a 3 day mini-session.  So you will have to wait to see pictures until I get a little more hooked.  But I do have a few pictures to share with you today. 

Unfortunately I forgot to take pictures in Barb's studio this year but here is a picture of two of us who attended this year, Deb to the left, Char and Bonnie and this picture was taken 2008.  The rug you see to the right is where I was sitting and hooking on the Kinderhook Basket design.  All to the left the right and behind me is covered with wool, wool, wool in every imaginable color and texture you can imagine.

Below is a picture of me hooking on that rug in 2008.

 Barb is very generous in taking us on a tour of her magnificent home and we are allowed to take pictures of anything and everything. 3 of us gals had been to Barb's several times but 2 of the gals were enjoying their maiden voyage. So since they were lingering behind us I could hear ooohs and ahhhs as well as gasps of breath as they enjoyed the hooked rugs throughout their tour. 

And, of course this picture is of the original antique which inspired Barb's Ligonier Duo design; it is awe inspiring to be able see up close and touch those antique rugs.

Here are 3 of the gals and I apologize to my friends for a poor and blurry picture but I tried to hurry and snap it before anyone could object.  The result of course is a poor picture.  But from left to right is my friend Shari, Deb, Char and then the Queen herself, Barb Carroll.

Over the bed is a hooked horse which is an antique but Barb seems to think that it isn't an E.S. Frost but in that era by another pattern maker of the time.

Three of us stayed in her Woolley Cottage and this is remarkable reminder of where we were as it was in our living room to enjoy each time we went to the bathroom or bedrooms.

I've many more photos of rugs but don't want to post them all here.  So savour these and if you ever have an opportunity to take a class with Barb Carroll, please do yourself a favor and sign up.  I know she is teaching at ATHA in Lancaster this October but those classes filled quickly.  But if you do, Barb will only work with textures; she does not consider mottled wool a texture.  It can be over dyed wool but must be over dyed over a texture.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Border changes of Sincerely Jane

I started pulling some loops on the border as I had it initially drawn and it just didn't look right.  So instead of having it a 2" border with closer zig zags I made the border 3" deep and decided to do what Jane did on her quilt and made them the same width as the blocks.  I think it looks a little more orderly, symmetrical and more pleasing to my eye.

It will take a little creativity to find something to do with the lighter sections as I'll soon run out of ideas for a small design to fit in the small cone shapes.  But guess I can just repeat myself with all ideas have been exhausted.

This will be my last post to my blog for about the next 5 or 6 days as I'm leaving this morning for a magnificent rug camp with the Queen of hooking...... Barb Carroll.  Hopefully I'll take some pictures of us gals and Barb and will share some with you when I return, wind down and catch up with things around the house.  It is always fun to pack for a camp but not so much fun unloading the van. 

So all you hookers and quilters out there, I'll be checking in on my blog within the next hour but will read all your comments when I return.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Lavender Tea Cozy

Here is an in-progress picture of Lavender Tea Cozy, a design by Karen Kahle.  Since I haven't decided it I'm going to make it into a tea cozy or mat, I drew the straight lines just in case I lean toward the mat.  But as I look at it now I can tell there is a little more space allowed at top than is really needed.

This is to be my hooking project the night of arrival at Barb's and what I'll work on until she gets to color planning my rug.  But it has been such fun working on this piece that it could easily be finished before getting to Barb's.  Therefore, I've decided to put it aside for now so that I'll still have something to work on at Barb's. 

Guess I'll pull out the Sinerely Jane challenge piece and pull some loops on my border as my home project for now since I'm saving this one for Ligonier, PA.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Home Tweet Home finished

Home Tweet Home (designed by Karen Kahle) is now finished.  Early on I'd decided to use a piece of jute to hold the birdhouse on the tree limb rather than hooking it in.  I just thought it might add a little interest to the piece.

Again I prewashed my cotton rug binding and it bled profusely so I used that dye to over dye a little more wool; turned out nice and had the same eggplant color as what I experimented with in an earlier post.

So now I'll go pull a few more loops on another Karen Kahle design..... Lavender Tea Cozy.  Keep checking back to see an 'in progress' report of that one ~ maybe tomorrow.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Update on the Jane Challenge rug

I just completed two more blocks on my Sincerely Jane challenge rug and when I put it on my frame next I think I'll hook a couple points on my border so I can get an idea of what I'm dealing with and which direction I want to go.  There are a few ideas bouncing around in my cranium so it will soon be time to execute some thoughts.

Was half-tempted to reverse hook the X square since the color is more vivid than all the rest in the rug as well as being really close in proximity to the other lighter and similar color.  But for now it will stay put.  I've had that piece of wool for a year or so and had never used it and was determined to see how it hooked up.

So today I'll start hooking on Karen Kahle's Lavender Tea Cozy as I will need something to work on the first night at Woolley Fox and then on the first day of class which will be May 16th.  Since that is a smallish pattern I just may put it down and hook some on the border of the SJ challenge rug before I leave for Ligonier.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Border thoughts on my Sinerely Jane

This morning I woke up rethinking my Sincerely Jane border.  So with felt tip pen in hand I went out another inch to make the border wider, thus making the points longer and more in keeping with Jane Stickle's quilt.  And, I really could extend the points a little longer.

As you can see on the cover of the book, the ice cream cone border is much more pointy than I originally drew my pattern.  Now, I won't do the scallops but think that because of the shape of the points that the edge will naturally get a wave effect anyway.  I can imagine it being a nightmare trying to bind the edge of a hooked rug with the ice cream cone scoop.
So, all you hookers and quilters out there, what is your opinion.... should I extend my present border 1", make it a little deeper even, or keep the  border as I had it?  Would love your input.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Sincerely Jane Update

Since my design and size of the Sincerely Jane rug is suitable to me I'm way ahead of schedule as far as finishing.  Seems to me it is only 3 months into the challenge so I can slide a little. 

That said, it just might be that I decide to slack off and get way behind when I start my rug camp With Barb Carroll in two weeks.  I'm sure I'll come home gung ho to work on that rug (which is a BIG secret) but will tell you it is an adaptation of a very famous antique design....  AH HA!  Do I have your attention now????  You will just have to wait.  TEE HEE..... I just love the tension in the room with hookers sitting on the edge of their seat anticipating the next breath or next picture of a rug or the smell of wet dyed wool. 

But for now here is my SJ challenge rug. 

I'm having problems deciding on colors or textures to make it interesting but still trying to stay true to the theme that Jane Stickle had with her quilt.  I want the muted look but have tried using textures to give the look of calico or homespun cotton.

Initially my thought was to use a dark background because that makes everything pop and look exciting.  But then got into the the whole Jane Stickle thing and decided to do a lighter and more mellow color for the sashing and background.  Something to be said about our foremothers for sure.  She made a beautiful piece of history.

 Still uncertain about the border and truly feel comfortable in waiting until the rest is hooked before deciding. Besides, IF I want to make longer cone shapes I can always sew a piece a fabric along the outer edge so that I can hook further out into the linen. But since I don't know what I want or what the piece needs I'll just wait. However..... if any of you gals have thoughts and opinions I'd love to hear your ideas.