Monday, April 11, 2016

Narrow Cut? OR Wide Cut?

Which cut are you?  I'm definitely a wide cut as that is what inspired me to learn to hook rugs.  While perusing the issues of Country Living magazine or Early American Life would see those wonderful primitive wide cut rugs on harvest tables, in front of the hearth, on the floor and chests and knew I wanted one.  Knowing I'd not be able to afford  an antique rug decided to learn to hook myself.

Boy what a can of worms I opened then.  Had no stash of wool, no cutter or frame or any of the other tools and now think I own enough to open up my own shop.   Anyway.....

My very first project at home was a hooked mitten in a book by Kindred Spirits and it was horrible.  Sure wish I still had it but gave it away to someone who was just learning and we were to swap our first projects. Ha!  She got mine and I didn't get hers.

So the next project hooked at home before a class was this design by Pat Cross called Penny Crow in her Purely Primitive book.  The minimally hooked rug kit was sold on ebay and since the #8 cut wool strips came with it I purchased it.
Then my journey to rug camps started but my love of wide cut has always remained so continued hooking in #8 (now my go to strip is #8.5).  

After some healing time, decided to hook a profile of my two departed Rottweilers Shumba and Panzer.  Luckily Jon Ciemiewicz was teaching a class nearby and enrolled with the intent of hooking my Rotties.  As Jon is a narrow cut hooker decided to buck up and give it a try.  
They were hooked in #3 and the background I refused to do any more narrow than #5.  Naturally there was much more to hook when I came home and I got lazy with the narrow cut.  

Yes, it looks like they are painted and can see the yellow in the teeth, the change of color in the gums, shine on the nose, etc.  AND....If you look carefully at my boy Panzer in the back you will see my laziness and didn't follow the flow of his coat just under Shadow's chin.  I hooked that area straight up and down to get the job done and to hell with the curve of the body.  That I regret as my boy deserved better.  But learned that narrow cut is not for me.  

Here is the photo from which this piece was designed.
One thing I am proud of with this hooked piece is their own hair which I had spun onto a thin wool piece is hooked into each of their necks.  A very special friend Lesley Covney (now departed) spun each of their hair onto a thin core of roving.  You can see the dark brown fuzz between the black and tan of the neck.  That is the hair of my dogs.
SOOOOO, just as soon as this rug was hung on my wall decided to draw out another rug and hook my departed pets in a wide cut just to see that it can be done.  Okey dokey.  So here are two whole dogs only 12" tall hooked in #8.  So don't tell me that you can't get detail in a wide cut.  Oh, and yes, my boy Panzer sat like a girl, just like my Ben boy does.  
So when my girl Shadow and I would take walks we (I) would discuss how she was a wide cut girl.  And so she was.  Shadow is hooked in #8.
Here is a photo of her when she was twisting her head when I'd talk to her.  
OMG she would make me laugh out lof course you know that Ben will be hooked in ....most likely #8.5. Hey, he is a MANLY boy ~ okay, so he sits like a girl.  By not you must know that I will hook my boy in a wide cut and hopefully before he leaves me.  So that is a rug in my near future so he and I can discuss it, lol.

At least I know my comfort zone with strip size and realize that I am and always have been a wide cut hooker.  So experiment, and do want makes you happy.  There is no shame in being a wide cut hooker ~ yup, know that now.

Tomorrow my boy Ben goes to have a spot removed from his belly.  I'll probably have a sleepless night as if it was me having that done to myself.  Yet am hopeful for the results based on what the vet told me last week.  

Have a great evening everyone one.  



  1. such beautiful memories hooked into your rugs my talented friend ~

  2. I started out with fine cut and in some ways I think I did better then, but I prefer prim cuts and the prim look.


  3. Saundra,,, enjoyed ur storys,,,, very nice,,,,, great to hear how people started,,,, I started primitives too,,, still love them the best!! Enjoy ur blogs,,, thanks for sharing ur stories,,,,

  4. Can I sit on the fence ????
    I like a #6 cut - not too fine and not to wide !!

  5. Love each of your memory rugs, wide and fine cut. Especially love that the dog hair is hooked into the one. Prayers for you and your Ben.

  6. I started with very narrow strips of wool , think they were 3 or 4 , I bought kits from Dorr Woolens . My Grandmother was a Hooker & learned from Pearl McGowen. I have some of her rugs rolled up in a closet. Hooking in 8 or 9's is so much faster & I Love the primitive style. Love how you made rugs for each of your special dogs, I am so amazed you were able to use their fur , that is amazing . Good luck today with Ben .

  7. I love the fine cut rug of your two dogs. They look real. I know how you hate to hook fine #3 and I don't blame you. I only use #3 for fine details and not for all the whole rug. My comfortable cuts are #5 and #6 I love doing details and I'm not ashamed of it either. lol.

    Everyone has there area of comfort. Vive la difference.

    Happy hooking.

  8. Narrow or wide, you are one heck of a hooker.
    Hope all is well with Ben.
    Hugs :)


Thanks for taking the time to visit and I always welcome comments.