Wednesday, January 31, 2018

New and Boomerang Projects

Hey, lookie.....all that mess has been cleaned up, worms separated by color again and placed in the baggies.  They are now back in the containers and on the shelf until the next time.
Except now the mess is in the wool room as I've been rummaging thru wool for just the right colors for this new project.  At least I know for sure a linen is on my frame ready for the new month.  No, it isn't a heart, but did think about hooking Hearts and Penny Flowers.  But for weeks have had Spike on my mind so will work on him.

The boomerang project will be the small Magdalena Goat just finished but not steamed.  I do like the changes made to the muzzle and tail, changed out a small piece of blue just above the eye, changed a section between the back legs but it still has the same value as the blue green it replaced, yet what I hooked is a black and white honeycomb wool.
Now what bothers me are the feet.  Will live with it a day or so and look at it as I walk upstairs to the wool room and back.  At the moment am considering changing the feet to the same texture as in the horns.  Had thought of using the same golden brown as  in the body of the goat except there is already some golden brown color in the corners.  Could also use a very dark (but not black) for the feet also. 

Guess you figured out that even when the design is all hooked I'm not done 😵.

Hard to believe that it is the end of January already.  It's time for me to gather and organize all my tax information so the CPA can do my taxes.  Can't believe it is that time again already either.


Monday, January 29, 2018


A couple loyal customers ordered patterns recently.  A Magdalena design was drawn last week, two patterns drawn yesterday and  shipped today.  Two designs were in the order to the same customer today ~ one being an adaptation of Hearts and Penny Flowers below.
As well as Horses and Hearts antique adaptation below.
The other WORK is cooking.  I do love to eat but hate spending hours in the kitchen.  That is why making a pot of soup or cooking a meal where there are leftovers for me to heat up is delightful.

I love stuffed cabbage but the traditional way requires a LOT of work.  So lucky me stumbled upon a recipe named "Unstuffed Cabbage Roll".  This is a photo of the still simmering dutch oven.  You can see some of the cabbage is still not totally cooked and before adding more tomato sauce and or water.
If interested, here is the recipe.  I made alterations and will let you know what changes I made so you can decide how to do your own.


2 lbs ground beef (I used ground turkey)
1 large onion (I used 2 onions)
1 small head of cabbage, chopped
2 (14.5 ounce) cans diced tomatoes
1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce (I used 2)
1/2 cup water (I added more as needed)
2 cloves garlic, minced (I used 3)
2 teaspoons salt (I used MUCH LESS + used sour salt)
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
        PLUS... I added 2 stalks celery.

Heat dutch oven or large skillet over medium-high heat.  Cook and stir ground meat and onion in the hot dutch oven until browned and crumbly, 5-7 minutes.  Drain and discard grease.  Add cabbage, tomatoes, tomato sauce, water, garlic, salt and pepper.  Bring to a boil, cover dutch oven, reduce heat and simmer until cabbage is tender.

In case you didn't know, "sour salt" is citric acid.  In watching some health program a few years ago they mentioned the term sour salt and was confused.  Went to the local health food store and they didn't know what I was talking about.  So did a google search to learn what it was.  HA!  low and behold I had some anyway because it is a mordant for dying wool.

Not sure if the next on the list I consider work or play.  But did cut more quilt pieces for my star quilt whenever sewing starts again.  But what is considered PLAY is that wool containers were opened up and wool spread out to pick wool for my next project.  Yeah, even tho this Goat isn't done just couldn't contain myself.  

Sunday, January 28, 2018

Near the Finish Line

Ah, getting close to the finish of Magdalena's Goat (smaller size).  But you know me, am second guessing wool choices again.  If you compare photos against the previous post you can see some of the yellow was pulled out and replaced between the back feet.  And still considering replacing that spot with something else again.
The other areas being considered for change are the goat's muzzle and tail.  Below is a photo of where I'd placed the wool over top the light wool ~ think I like that better.  What do you think?
When the hooking is done on this rug will start Spike and set this aside for binding later.  

Today after posting this I will cut linen and draw a couple antique adaptation patterns for someone.

Yesterday the temperatures were very mild so thought I'd attempt  starting my riding mower and mulch the leaves in my front and side yards.  Didn't really think I'd have success since this was such a hard frigid winter.  Luckily it started and was able to accomplish the mulching before today's rain.

Happy Sunday.


Thursday, January 25, 2018

Rounding the Bend

I'm getting closer to the finish line but still a ways to go.  Yesterday there wasn't a whole lot of hooking done since I traveled two hours (there and back) to deliver my Bernette serger for repair.  The Bernette was in mid-serging mode on a linen pattern for someone when it just stopped.  

Was so afraid the work horse had seen it's final days but received a call this afternoon saying it can be picked up tomorrow.  YIPPEE!  Having it back will be worth the standard $90 fee plus whatever parts were needed.  Guess it pays to pay the big bucks for quality equipment.  So that means more travel again tomorrow and less hooking.

Okay, this is what Magdalena's Goat, smaller version, looks like at this time.  The photos are taken with different settings and the one below is usually closer to the real colors with fewer pixels.
Photo below, when tapped, will enlarge and see more detail in the wool chosen.  At quick glance you can see the picture below looks more washed out.
I've already replaced some loops with different wool choices but see other places which need a redux.  A noticeable one would be that gold and yellow between the two back feet.  It just looks too out of place.  Which is funny considering it is a Magdalena and with a hit and miss background.  But hey, if it bothers me I'll have to change it for me.

Although it has been mentioned before, the original Magdalena Goat pattern measurements are 29 x 35 and the small measures 22 x 26.

Have a great evening.


Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Rug Hooking Related Chit Chat

To me this is a total MESS!  I'd like to think it as 'creative chaos' but in reality it changed from an organized grouping of wool worms (by color) and developed into CHAOS.  Here is photo #1 where the worms are filling the spot where my handsome boy Ben would normally be looking at me with love in his eyes and guarding the yard.
Notice the gathering of mixed colors on the arm of the sofa as well as to the left where I'd fill that clean space.  All those worms will multiply, then when the rug is done will need to be separated AGAIN to put in bags by color.  Just for effect, here is a front view.
For over 10 years I went to Barb Carroll's rug camp and stayed on her lovely premises in one of the Ligonier cabins.  That is until May 2016 when my ex husband couldn't come take care of Ben.  I couldn't find a kennel in time so missed last year.  Then Barb sold the property and our group decided it was time to end the delightful camp.  

Long story short, I needed to fill my spring hooking habit.  But my registration for Maryland Shores rug camp in April was sent too late so couldn't get into any classes.  Told the camp organizer to put me on a waiting list and just Monday found out I'd gotten lucky.  So now in a class taught by Eric Sandberg who is filling in for Norma.  I've taken a class with Eric before so since he does color well.  

 As all of you know my color choices are earthy and am uncomfortable using bright colors.  Therefore I'm taking a pattern which spoke to me but require colors not in my usual comfort zone.  That camp will be in April and you will have a chance to see what that design will be.

Am sorry if you got bored by all this verbiage ~ guess I need to shorten my blog posts.

Hope you on the eastern shore have enjoyed these 60+ temperatures as things are about to get back to normal temps.  The party is over.


Sunday, January 21, 2018

Another Mini Rug Show

At first glance I thought the motifs were hearts; but upon closer look AND then reading the description learned they were apples.  From South Pomfret, VT it was dated late 19th or early 20th century.  Original size is 62 x 66.
Below is a floral and geometric design sold by Conestoga auction in Pennsylvania.  No date was given but original dimensions are 27 x 39.
The 3 star rug with hit and miss border was said to be hooked around 1920 and was sold by Olde Hope auction.  Dimensions are 30 x 63.
A floral and stars design with geometric center.  There is a lot going on but my eye moves around and notice everything.
Below is a perfect example of a naive folk art type rug.  It has lollipop leaves on the tree, animals are over sized compared to the house and trees.  Dated mid 20th century from New England.
American flags with hit and miss background.
The rug below was given a date of 1900 and located in Maryland.  I cannot decide if it is an abstract geometric, if the center is a house, or is it a face with eyes, nose, lips and mustache?  Why isn't the hooker around when there are so many questions to ask?
Have a good eveing.


Saturday, January 20, 2018

Magdalena Goat Smaller Size

One would think since this is a smaller version of Magdalena's Goat it would be done by now.  Nope...slow progress, sad to say.  Took two different photo settings.  The first one provides a more realistic color  but there are less pixels per inch so cannot see wool detail when you tap on the photo.
The picture below is a little lighter but if you tap on the photo you will be able to see more closely the wool used.  As mentioned in a previous post, future patterns won't have all those narrow confusing lines.  The patterns will be more simple so the hooker can decide how many different colors she or he wishes to hook in a section.  
Today was such a nice day outside spent time picking up pine cones and sweeping away those irritating gumballs.  Soon it will be grass cutting time and those will destroy mower blades.  Plus walking on them puts me off balance ~ felt nice to be outside without being all bundled up.  

When returning to hook watched a movie "The Girl On the Train" which required lots of visual to catch timelines and character names as the story traversed from present to past.  

More nice weather is ahead, according to our forecaster which will be a nice break from the frigid temperatures of late.  Have a great weekend.


Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Mini Vintage Rug Show

Am holding off showing additional progress on Magdalena Goat so thought I'd entertain you with a few old rugs.  So far this evening it seems I'm on the "Winter Blues" theme.  Below is a rug with two horses and hearts said to be late 19th century from Pennsylvania.  Hit and miss background and wonderful blotchy horses.
Below is a stitchery, not hooked but worth mentioning.  It was hooked by Polly Bedford 'in the twelfth year of her age in 1991.  Handiwork was proper back then, when I went to school in the 'olden days' 😏, we were taught how to sew and cook.  Don't think many 12 year old girls today even know how to sew on a button.
The rug below is a simplistic design but I like it.  It was documented as being hooked around 1890.
Don't have a date for the Blue Bowl of flowers below.  Interesting is the cobalt blue base with lighter blue above.  Was this planned or did she use what she had and placed the colors strategically?
The blue bunny rug below was dated 1900 and dimensions of the rug were 30 x 54.
Below is a Cat with blue stars.  I wonder what those figure 8 motifs are.  There must be some meaning because the same shape appeared in the recent rug I hooked (Primitive Horse).  The rug below was dated at 1900 also.
This rug below I've drawn for Polly Minick to hook so have the paper pattern to use for myself.  One day I'd like to hook it as well.  Too many grandiose desires and so little time.
Last but DEFINITELY not least, is this dog design.  Don't know if the initials "BUS" is of the hooker or the dog's name.  But I've already sold two patterns even before hooking it myself so this is what will be on my frame next.  I have named it "SPIKE" because of the collar and sounds like a proud name for a dog.  
Interesting side note on the above rug is that Cammie Bruce said she placed a bid for it at the on-line auction house and didn't get back home to do a final bid before it was sold.

Happy hooking.


Monday, January 15, 2018

Magdalena Goat Update

In a previous post mentioned I'd decided to hook this design twice.  The first was hooked with Magdalena's original size of 29 x 35 and replicating her colors as best I could using my wool.  Thinking the original might be larger than some folks would like to tackle decided to reduced the pattern to 22 x 26 and using different colors.  
Jo Wick would have had this rug hooked and bound by now as she is quite the fast hooker ~ me not so fast.  

When I drew and hooked the original design wanted to stay true to the color and directional change of Magdalena, thus many fine drawn lines.  Hooking this smaller size found myself hooking past drawn lines and doing my own thing.  Then realized how intimidating the pattern must look.  SO, future patterns will look less complicated and let the hooker choose how to fill the space.

Next time you see the update it might just look different still. Yeah, I know... I'm fickle.

Happy Monday.


Saturday, January 13, 2018

Braiding or Hooking?

A follower asked me and interesting question.   She wanted to know if the One Room School House antique rug had a braided or hooked edge.  That was a question I asked myself when first looking at the rug.  I believe it is a hooked edge using textured wool.

There is a hooking technique which gives the appearance of a braided edge and have seen it demonstrated in a class.  However, I've never tried it myself.  This morning even went in search thru old camp notes in hopes of finding the paper related information but to no avail.  Then Googled 'hooked braided edge' and nothing popped up in my search.

Here is a close-up of the top right corner of the One Room School house.  Notice the worn/torn edge where loops are missing.
I believe it is a hooked edge using plaid wool to give the appearance of braiding.  Those same colors appear at the oval of the rug as seen below.  While some rugs have been made with braiding inside as well as the edge, don't think that is what was done here.
It is possible to use textured wool to fool the eye into believing it is a braided edge as I have demonstrated below.
The Curled Cat rug I hooked in 2003 sorta gives the appearance with using a plaid wool.
Another trick is to do the 'beading' technique which I did on the Ali Katz design.  I hooked only one row using black and the colors of wool used in the design.  Had I hooked two rows of beading using black and a single color it may have appeared to be more like a braid.
Although I do have plans one day to do a braided edge I've successfully avoided that to date.  Personally, I think the braided edge needs to have a certain rug for it compliment the rug vs. detracting from the content of the hooked design.  Just MHO.

Happy Saturday.


Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Appreciating the Past

It's no secret I've an affection for antique rugs and prefer to hook replications with their faded and worn state vs. what the colors were by looking at the back of the rug.  Enjoy the show.

This One Room School house and auction house said was hooked late 19th century.  Am guessing the initials at the bottom are that of the hooker.
Below is a Three Home pictorial with the date of 1892.  I had to look twice when reading the description on the auction site because it looked almost like 1822 at first.
A hit and miss background below with birds, duck and cat was hooked late 19th century early 20th.
The rug below was called Dog Twins Facing Off and comes from New Hampshire with no date provided.
Another dog rug from Pook and Pook was documented as being hooked 1900.  I find this rather interesting after studying it for a while.  The four corners are hooked in triangles with use of color in the middle of each end.  Yet my attention goes to the left side with the dog's head.  Perhaps it is because of the dark pointed lines facing to the far left which indicates direction the dog is walking.  Oh, and I love that dirty muddy and blotchy center background around the dog.
Would love to spend time with the elder hookers and chat about what inspired them and what went thru their minds when drawing the designs.

Another hit and miss background with an almost hidden elephant due to fading.  This was hooked 19th century and located in New Hampshire.
Isn't this Curled Kitten on an oval rug adorable?  Sorry, no provenance but you can tell it is old from the wear.... you're welcome Kelley.
Received my propane yesterday, removed the space heaters, cranked up the thermostat and slept like a baby last night without worry.  Hope you living in the cold are staying warm and for those in California I'm sad.  First the fires, then the rain and mud slides.  

I lived in Northern California (east of San Francisco) for 3 years and thank goodness all we encountered were the earthquakes, which I HATED.  After my first husband died couldn't wait to get my son and myself back to the east coast where we only contend with hurricanes, blizzards, nor-easters, tornados....oh, and occasional earthquake,😒. 

Happy hooking, needle punching and quilting to all my blog buddies.


Monday, January 8, 2018

The Rug Reveal

Some of you probably already guessed it is a Magdalena rug with that background, a Magdalena trademark.  This is Magdalena's Goat which was discovered last January.  If you'd like to read about its discovery click HERE.

Yes, I'm hooking it twice.  The first time was hooked attempting to replicate Magdalena's rug using my wool.  Recently decided to hook a smaller version and hook it differently.  This is what I've accomplished so far.
As I'm hooking this find myself not needing those all those lines but rather hooking larger areas of color.  So if you order the pattern it won't look so intimidating.  Follow along to see how I hook it.

The size of this pattern is 22 x 26 drawn on Dorr natural primitive linen and the cost is $62 includes shipping.  The original size measures 29 x 35 on the same foundation and costs $87 includes shipping.  Those costs are for shipping within the US proper.

Can't wait to finish the goat and hook the horns.  Then the background will be the most fun using up wool from my worm bags.  So far I'm using #9 cut wool for the goat but whatever size is pulled out of my wooly bags is what will be for the background.  Fun fun fun.


Saturday, January 6, 2018

On My Frame

Now that the two rugs have been bound can enjoy hooking the present rug.  The blizzard of 2018 has interrupted my fun but thank God I have electric.  Here is what little I've accomplished on my current project.  Maybe you know what the pattern is... if not it will be revealed in a future post.
As the temperatures are sub-freezing the heat pump switches to propane emergency stage 2 heat.  December 26th I had 42% propane.  Tuesday January 2nd I had 25% propane and called to order a tank full.  Yesterday morning (just 3 days later) there was only 16% left.  My propane dealer only delivers on Tuesdays in my town and am concerned I will use all my propane before delivery next Tuesday.

So trying to conserve propane reduced my thermostat to 60 degrees and plugged in a space heater to supplement the inside heat so the propane won't kick on as much.   
Thankfully a neighbor called to ask if they could pick up something for me since they were going to venture out on the roads.  I asked them to buy me two space heaters IF there were any left on the shelves.

So he purchased two for me and loaned me one of his.
Now I have one  in the living room, kitchen, office and bedroom.
The space heater in the living room has a 4 hour timer but the other three only have up to an hour time limit.  So my sleep was interrupted visiting all the space heaters and turning them back on a few times during the night.  Am hoping this will let the propane last until delivery on Tuesday.  Cannot believe how cold it has been and for so long; hope this means an early spring.

But, I'm very thankful to have electric as the situation could have been worse.

Hope you are all able to stay warm.


Thursday, January 4, 2018

Finally Finished

Thank goodness the rugs are finally bound and can continue hooking my current project without telling myself I should be binding.  The Primitive Horse rug below is a Lib Callaway design which is offered by Jeannie Benjamin and understand Jan Cole sells the pattern as well.
The finished size of Primitive Horse is 251/2 x 391/2.  It was hooked using hand torn, scissor and machine cut.  Also pulled wool from my worm bags.  Size strips ranged from #8 to #10 and larger.  The photo below shows this rug was bound using doubled cotton of the same colors.
Birthday Lion is a Bill Laraway design, was hooked using #8.5 and #9 strips.  The finished size measures 201/2 x 25.
This one also got its label attached since I'd already printed it up.  However the Primitive Horse rug still needs its label.  But the most dreaded work has been done....the binding.
Blizzard still going strong here but weatherman says snow will let up today around 5 p.m.  This area is receiving more snow than predicted but what is worse is the sub freezing temperatures with wind.  

That is compounded by the fact my stage 2 emergency heat is fueled with propane and am almost out.  The company does not deliver this area until next Tuesday so I'm sure the tank will be totally empty before that.  So if my heat pump kicks in it will work its self to death trying to keep the house warm.

But at least I'm thankful for what heat and electricity there is here now.  Hope all of you in this weather are able to stay warm.  Snuggle up under a rug and hook, hook, hook.