Thursday, July 31, 2014

Another Book By Polly Minick

Yet another new book by Polly Minick, that woman just never stops.  This one is hard cover with spirals so the book will lay flat when open.  While it is geared for the beginner hooker there are 11 designs that all primitive hookers will enjoy.  Cute designs which are great and quick to hook for a swap or gift to someone.  So more than newbies can benefit and enjoy this book with it's primitive patterns.
The text is written in both English and French but the cool thing is there is a DVD which has both JPEG and PDF pattern templates for Windows and Mac.  My copier will not copy a printed pattern in a book OR magazine unless I rip out the page because if the cover is not totally flat it will not copy.  The DVD allows you to choose a design, print and enlarge to your desired size ~ I use the Paint program to enlarge my designs.
There are 11 designs in the book shown in color with instructions and templates on the DVD, here are a couple of those designs.

So do you want to do a sampler?  There's one of those in there too.
Naturally I didn't show you all the designs as I'd like to leave a little anticipation for when you order your book.  If you would like to inquire about the purchase of the book contact Polly HERE.
I worked my hiney off outside this afternoon pulling thorny vines, separating iris plants to share with a neighbor and thought I'd have a heat stroke  ~ well not really, but got very uncomfortable.  I should have cut grass because it is supposed to rain for the next few days.  Oh well, I'll manage even if it grows another inch.
Have a great evening everyone.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Old Project, Present Project and Newbie Tidbit

Cannot remember if I posted a picture of the antique adaptation of Pot of Flowers or not but here it is if I didn't.  As you can see it still needs binding.  Figured since I was going to do an update for the Mache Jack-O-Lantern pattern I'd post a picture of both at the same time.
Here's what my Mache Jack-O-Lantern design looks like now; one picture with a flash and one without.

It is quite helpful for me to see pictures of the rugs on my monitor even if the colors aren't the same as in person. At least it points out areas of concern for me and things which need changing.

And, for you newbies who may have read my previous blog post about "hooking what is on top first" the photo above shows you how to do that.  Notice that the Jack in the back still has the hooking going in the direction of what WOULD BE it's normal shape.  Therefore the rows of hooking will run INTO the sides of the other Jacks instead of following the shape of the other Jacks.

Have a great evening everyone.  I've thoroughly enjoyed this mild July weather today.  Tomorrow will be my day to do yard work so not sure how much hooking will get done.  Grass needs mowing and thorny vines need pulling, and more rain coming I've got to get control of this acreage before it encroaches on my front and back door step.


Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Mache' Jack-O-Laterns Update

At least that is what I'm naming them now because it was the vintage paper mache Jacks which are at a premium price if they can be found, that I was trying to capture.  There are two down and one to go.
Funny thing is that I was happy as a clam with the first one I hooked (on the far right) but then when I hooked the one on the left thought he looked more like a real vintage paper mache Jack the other.  Still haven't pulled any loops on him yet so will wait to see what the middle Jack looks like after he is hooked.

Many designers have versions of Jacks and I've admired and hooked a few of them.  Although I didn't want to do a fine hooked realistic piece my intentions were to still get the look of a vintage paper mache Jack using a primitive style; I'm using #8.5 strip hooking everything and the dimensions are 14.5 x 25.5 for the piece. 

For you newbies just joining my blog you may wonder why I didn't hook the middle Jack first.  My learned hooking teachers taught me to hook "what's on TOP first". 

Have a great evening and you on the east coast enjoy this low humidity and cooler than July temps.


Monday, July 28, 2014

And the WINNER of the Pattern Giveaway is.........

.....drum roll........

PJ!!!!!  It was your name picked from those who posted an interest in the pattern.  But those who didn't get picked, have no fear as I've two other quilt patterns which will be offered as a giveaway in the very near future.

This is what you will receive PJ; send your snail mail address to me at: and I'll put it in the mail to you. 
So you quilters out there, stay tuned, tell your friends there will be future giveaways from my blog.  I'd rather give them to blogger friends than take them to the thrift shop ~ it is kinda nice to share the bounty with friends.

Have a good evening.


Saturday, July 26, 2014

Time for a Giveaway

Since I'm working on a fall themed project I'm sure many of you are doing the same or will be soon.  And if you are a quilter you are in luck as I've this pattern to giveaway.  It is a pattern by Four Corners and all instructions are there including the uncut pattern sheet.
As you can see from this picture below, I've done some of the work for you and the pieces are even ironed onto light weight fusible web so they are ready to be ironed onto your fabric of choice.
I made the one larger single quilt piece but didn't complete the one with four scarecrow designs.  This picture below is very washed out as the picture was taken in the sunlight a few years ago.  I can't take a new picture since I've given the quilt piece away.  But the colors really were nicer and not dull brown as it appears in this photo.
A name will be chosen on Monday morning.  So here are my rules:

~Must be a FOLLOWER
~USA residents only (sorry my dear Canadian neighbors)
~NO-REPLY Bloggers will automatically be eliminated

So you don't think you have a No Reply blogger issue?  Even if you have an e-mail address you could still be a NO-REPLY blogger.  Even if you have your own blog you may not know you have that dreaded "No-Reply" blogger issue.  To find out if you do and how to fix it click HERE.

Good luck and just leave me a comment saying you are interested in the Giveaway.


Friday, July 25, 2014

Mache' Jack-O-Lanterns Update

Sure wish I  had an almost finished project to show you but don't...sorry.  Am still working it out and finally decided to stop, take a picture and post it here so I can get a bird's eye view on what I've done and determine what to do next.

My 'plan' was to make these Jacks look like the vintage ones I remember seeing as a kid and wish I had in my collection now.  Hmm, frankly don't think we ever owned one as a kid so maybe they were too expensive for our family even back then.  Come to think of it my brother and I used pillow cases to collect our small amount of Halloween treats and had to turn the cases upside down to get to our reward.

This is what I've accomplished thus far.  I'm trying to make the Jacks look they have wear.  The one on the left is supposed to show some wear and rubbing on the lips, cheeks, top and bottom.  At a distance it looks better than when it is just under my chin while working on it. 
I would like to make all three pumpkins a little different in design and color because there were different manufacturers of the Jacks and each would have different wear.  Plus, some had the green at the bottom or top or perhaps on both.

All I can say is this is more fun than doing a commission, although the commission does...."show me the money".

Have a great evening everyone and enjoy the weekend.


Thursday, July 24, 2014

Homemade Hooking Tote

I made this hooking tote for myself about 10 years ago ~ actually made two and gifted one to my friend Shari.  As you can see I used some vintage bark cloth, cheap burlap and cottons.  It has pockets on the two ends for supplies, a hooked flower and cute cat pin on one side.
On the other side is another hooked flower and a crow head pin.  Both the cat and crow pins were gifted to me but for the life of me cannot remember who that sweetie was. 
It is lined with beige cotton and I sewed an inside divided pocket for more storage, check book, car keys or whatever.
The instructions came from this booklet called "Collections", a Kindred Spirits publication.  So if you sew and would like your own tote, you can purchase the book from Ali HERE.
As I'm getting excited about the Cape May rug camp this September, thought I'd dust off my hooking tote since Ali will be my teacher.

Tomorrow I'm hoping to give an update on my latest project and soon I'll offer a giveaway.  Will tell you more about that in a day or two.  Have a great afternoon.


Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Mache' Jacks ~ One Down Two To Go

Today I managed to get  a few more loops pulled, the one jack is finished and just barely started another.  Before posting this picture I wanted to have some background hooked and pull a few loops along  the curved beauty line inside.
Not sure which texture I'll use for the beauty line or perhaps a mixture of both.  It will probably take a lot more hooking on that line before I'll know.  Heck, it's only one row so it could be easily switched out with a little reverse hooking.

As you can see on the linen, the dimensions are 14.5 x 25.5.  This will be a nice size to put on my harvest table this FallOween.  If anyone is wondering, it is my design and eventually will be a pattern I offer for sale.

The past several days have been unusually pleasant for a July in Delaware but the party is just about over.  Heat, humidity and storms are to arrive tomorrow.

Hope your evening is good and tomorrow even better.  Please be kind to one another...let's all play nice.


Sunday, July 20, 2014

Here's What's Next

With the commission rug done it was time for me to execute those  couple ideas rolling around in the grey matter as I hooked on someone else's piece.  So pencil to paper I did 3 drawings and finally narrowed my choice down to one.

Normally I'm not a bright wool kinda person ~ I gravitate to a more subdued color palate suitable for a primitive old look.  But October will be here soon so decided it was about time for me to get the vintage paper mache' jack-O-lanterns out of my head and put on linen.
I'm still trying to work out the kinks and his mouth looks like it needs attention.  I wanted a red orange for the inside of the mouth but maybe I need to go with a darker burnt red to give more value contrast to the orange pumpkin. 

So when you see it again there might be some changes as stumble thru my hooking process.  But must admit it is much more fun hooking for me, yet the time away made me appreciate this process even more.

Have a good evening.


Friday, July 18, 2014

Oh Dear.... What Next?

The commission piece is done, I'm binding the rug to be sold and still have another yet to bind.  Plus, this delightful pattern by Star Rug also still needs to be finished; I started the binding but got side tracked. 
Since there is nothing new on my frame....YET, and since my creative juices have been floating in my brain, I'm not sure just what will go on my frame next.  But I must say I'm getting fidgety, my hooking hand is shaking and I'm beginning to get frustrated and unsatisfied. 

Today I did sketch one thought but not the whole piece as the border hasn't been decided. That one is a fall theme. 

And, being in the heat of summer celebrations thoughts of my youth, dancing and being happy and free is another theme.  I might work on both ideas but realize fall is coming sooner than the next summer celebration. 

So.....while in my wool room today saw a pattern purchased from Lucille Festa.  It was during one of my classes with her in Ocean City, MD a few years ago that she had this design hooked and I fell in love.  I knew Hobo Joe was a must have pattern. Today I stumbled upon the pattern and even tho it was planned as a cut-out figure maybe I'll hook it in a rectangular shape ...not sure yet.  Guess that depends on whether or not I get my mojo juices flowing to start something of mine.
Lucille, must tell you this guy is still beckoning me and I LOVE him still.  Hobo might be on my frame next unless I can get my groove on.
Have a great night everyone. 

Thursday, July 17, 2014


Webster defines creativity as "the ability to  make new things or think of new ideas".  Perhaps I fit into the category of making new things (for me) rather than thinking of new ideas.  As with most of us who quilt, stitch, knit, punch or hook, we have each probably had more than one hobby/craft/art in our lives. 

I've done all those and more, to include small scale hand weaving, photography, drawing and oil painting.  Oh, and basket weaving (still have those dang supplies too).

This morning over coffee I read Tammy's BLOG with interest and could relate to her childhood experiences with drawing and art.  And as an adult I was my own worse critic and perhaps related back to my youth.  Somewhere I still have my sketch pad, it's here somewhere.  The only pencil sketch that I knew the location of was in the guest bedroom and is of my then 1 year old son.  You can see my perspective is off, he has more of an adult nose in the drawing; and never could do lips or  eyes right.  But it was the act of trying to capture a likeness of my adorable son. 
And then I started an oil painting of him and never finished it.  It sits on a shelf in my wool room and my 46 year old son has asked when I will finish it.  Told him that to me it was finished as I don't have a desire to go back to oil painting.
Here is a painting which was done for my first husband Gary (departed in 1981).  He loved it and I had a sense of pride, perhaps because of his praise and approval. 
Below is an oil I did with boats in snow with community across the water.  It just seemed to scream for a natural primitive style frame.  These two paintings are stacked in my storage room. 
 This one below I still love and called him Old Salt.  It is hanging on the wall in my wool room.
And then one day got a hankering to make a companion piece to Old Salt, his wife.  So started the one below which also never got finished.  Among lots of things needing to be corrected in her painting, the straw that broke my back was the fingernails.  So it hangs in my wool room but also isn't done. 
 In my attic are still life paintings I did and at one time hung them in the kitchen of various houses we lived in during our travels.  It has been a long time since they were hung yet I have moved them when I  moved.  They have never hung in this house and I've been here since 1997.
 This large still life used to hang in the kitchen as well but not for years as with the other still life.
There were more oil paintings that I did and gave away to friends or family, my son has a huge eagle I painted which he adores.  Don't have a picture of that one but next time I'm at their house should probably take one just to have a record of.

So Tammy, kudos to you for exercising the brain and hand and charging up that creative spirit. 

Speaking more of creativity...... I'm done with the commission so now have the task this afternoon to bind a rug.  THEN..... there are two hooked designs that are swirling around in my cranium.   Hopefully I can get the head and hand to communicate with one another and put my thoughts on paper as I want to hook something fun for me.

Have a great day and evening.


Sunday, July 13, 2014

Pot of Flowers & Selling Rugs

The last loops on the antique adaptation Pot of Flowers has been pulled but isn't bound yet because I am still working on the commission piece, sure wish I was a faster hooker.  But since I was going stir crazy for some blog-luvin' and wanted to put the pattern on my web site decided to have my morning coffee and accomplish both.
Pot of Flowers measures 16 x 23 and I hooked it mostly in #8.5 except for those already cut strips, some of which may have been in #8.  If you are interested in the pattern click the link which will take you to my web site.

Now for the selling rugs part.  I have sold a few rugs but not many.  Since I live in a rural area where it is mostly agriculture or chicken farming and production, there isn't much interest for locals to purchase  a hand hooked rug.  When I was doing shows at the beach which draws people from DC and elsewhere, that is when I would sell.

Once I decided to sell some of my rugs wasn't sure how to price them.  At that time I was told that fine hookers can get $125 per sq. foot and primitive hooking less.  But how much less I wondered.

So I decided to watch eBay and saw some great hooked pieces go for around $65 per sq. ft., some less and some more, depending on the name of the hooker and their following.   Also there are well-known hookers who easily get huge bucks for their rugs even primitive wide cut hooking ~ again, it is the name.

Some folks sell their rugs at a gallery where they give a percentage of the sale to the owner.  Therefore if they get $100 per sq. ft. obviously they walk away with less than that because of the commission.  And if a rug sells on eBay then eBay gets a part of the proceeds and again a portion of the sale goes to PayPal if the buyer pays using that paying option.

Friday when at a gathering of friends and acquaintances I took a rug to show since they enjoy seeing what I'm working on or just finished.  I was approached by a man to sell it even tho it hadn't been bound yet.  I told him I was planning to keep that one.  He reminded me that I could always hook another, and yes I could but so far have never re-hooked a rug I'd hooked previously even if I was sorry it was sold.

As it turns out I did decide to sell the rug and asked for $85 per sq. ft.  No money goes to pay for a booth, no commission to anyone and it will be paid to me direct.

I've been told that by selling a rug too cheaply devalues the prices other hookers get.  Well maybe those hookers have a following or live in a more affluent area than I do.

I would be VERY interested in what other people get for their rugs and if primitive or fine cut, tho I doubt there are many fine cut hookers who regularly read my blog.

Whew, this was a long post and hope you have a good rest of the day.  I've got to go out and do yard work now so no hooking on the commission yet today.


Thursday, July 10, 2014

All Work and No Play......

....makes Saundra a very dull girl and absent blogger.  Since life duties and a commission piece has been my central focus I've not done much else.  Don't have a new rug I'm working on and still have two rugs to bind.

With that in mind I decided to post a few pictures of some antique rugs found on Pinterest which was a treat for me to visit for some break time entertainment.

Be still my heart.  When I saw this picture it indicated this was a picture from ebay.  OMG, who would want to sell it and wonder how much the lucky recipient had to pay for this beauty?  Oh, the person who took the picture is guilty of having feet in the 'foto' too.... like me.
This was entitled "Cornacopia" but it has the appearance of the scrolls which I was very intimidated to hook yet am strangely drawn too. 
This antique style rug is, I believe, known as scallops or shells and perhaps other names that I'm not familiar with.  I'd expect this would be a great way to rid yourself of those woolie worms and make an antique looking rug.  Note to self....put on list.
Do you remember me hooking this rug below and I called it the Granny Geo?  I found this one just now on Pinterest and it was called the Blanford Cross.  I used wool from my stash as a hit and miss so it may have been a little more interesting to hook with a color theme.  However, my reason for hooking it was to reduce my pre-cut wool stash.
Another new love is this lovely from 1907.
Well kiddies, I think the rain has lessened and it is time for me to take my boy Ben for his nightly walk and get back to work.  Yes, hooking for someone else, but this is work and helps feed my addiction to buy more wool and go to rug camps.  So guess it is a double edge sword.  Have a great evening everyone.


Monday, July 7, 2014

Some Rugs I've Hooked

Since I'm still working on the commission rug thought I'd feed your thirst for blogging and show you some rugs I've hooked.  The one below is a design by Bev Conway.  The original design had the hens sitting on a large egg each but I wanted them on a bed of straw.
This is Birds and Pomegranates, a design by Edyth O'Neil and it was taken from the pattern offered in a book, but forget which book right now.  It is residing somewhere in the New England states.
This is Two Chickens, a design by Polly Minick .
 The one below I named "The Olde Gals" and was adapted, with permission, by the quilt designer.  I added the tree outline and grass for framing.  Before deciding to hook this my plans were to hook Deanne Fitzpatrick's "Coastal Girls".  But since I was going thru a divorce decided the olde gals needed to stick together; they may no longer have the youth and beauty but they were wiser and a strong lot who had the friendship of one another for support. 
This is an antique adaptation and I chose to hook only one of the two horses.
Obviously I've many more rug pictures that I've hooked but this will give you a bit of eye candy when you need a hooking fix.


Friday, July 4, 2014


Hope everyone has a happy and safe July 4th.  It's raining here in Delaware as I suspect all the east is getting it because of the tropical storm.

Here are a couple designs by Polly Minick which were hooked by me, Boy Pulling Dog.
Sam's Hat and Stars, design by Polly Minick and hooked by me.
This is a Vermont Folk Art design called Wee Folk and hooked by me.
A mohair bear and decorative hat I made.  Well, dang; I took the picture with my camera tilted and even tho I rotated it with the Paint program it still came out sideways.  Sorry.
And lastly, an Uncle Sam doll, my design and made by me.


Thursday, July 3, 2014

Just in the Nick of Time

The last loops were pulled on the Pot of Flowers yesterday afternoon and it was done soon after the box of work arrived by FedEx.  It hasn't been steamed yet but at least while I'm working on something for someone else I won't be drawn to finishing up the piece.    For those of you who want to know the dimensions, the rug is 16" x 22.5".  Sadly the flash messes with the color and it is not washed out in person.  Soon you will see it offered on my web site in the pattern section.
If you would like to compare it to the original antique, here it is.  And while hooking mine I had an ah ha moment. on.......
I printed out a picture of the antique rug so that I could use that to draw the pattern. Problem is the printed copy wasn't so great and was hard to determine whether it was a leaf or a flower on the right side.  It would be the blue, red and light colored one on the bottom of the last flower to the right.  When I drew it out it appeared to be a funky looking flower but as I was hooking something didn't seem right.  So I pulled up the picture on my computer and could see it was a leaf.  Needless to say I had to pull out my hooking and do it right or I'd never been satisfied.  Whew, so now I have made that change to my master pattern so future pieces will be drawn properly.

Hope everyone has a happy and SAFE July 4th.  I've no plans except to work on my commission and watch movies on the 'telly'.