Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Ideas for Designing a Primitive Rug

As early as 1850 stamped embroidery patterns and preprinted patterns on burlap were offered by Chambers and Leland of Lowell, MA.  But in 1860's it was E.S. Frost, a tin peddler, who was the entrepreneur who took advantage of the growing popularity of hooked rugs.  

However, farm folk may not have had the resources to pay for such luxury.  So women would hook rugs on burlap sacks which had a chicken or other motif printed on the sack.  They might then embellish it with their own border or add other motifs either free drawn or using a template.  Such template may have been a cookie cutter if they were lucky enough to own one.

I've long wanted to design a rug as Magdalena Briner Eby has done, by doing primitive animals I see daily on my wooded property.  Still hasn't happened but if I live long enough it will.  

If you would like some inspiration for your own design feel free to print out any of these photos of cookie cutters and use as you wish.  Below is a leaping rabbit
Of course there are lots of birds that frequent my bird feeders.  

And numerous ground feeding Dove live on the property and they rely on dropped seeds below the feeders.
But the pesky squirrels end up chasing them away.  The squirrels are a menace to me also since they gnaw on my porch, deck chairs, decorative bird houses on my porch, etc.
Although I don't own a cat at this time, the feral cat visits to see if it can catch one of my birds.  This cat cookie cutter reminds me of the cats depicted in Magdalena's Domestic Zoo below.

Being surrounded by woods there are those frequent deer visitors.

Templates can be made to use over and over again.  Here are a couple ways:

   ~  Print the photo, trim around the template and glue onto file folder or similar stiff paper.  The cut around the design itself.

   ~ Print the photo.  With a light box or window pane, trace the design onto an old Xray film and cut out the motif.

In the event you use any of these as templates I'd love for you to share your piece with me.  These are antique cookie tins so I do not deserve or need any credit for your design.

Happy drawing and happy hooking.



  1. Love these cookie cutters and that would be a great idea to hook those shapes ! My favorite one is the rabbit !!!

  2. I'm still drooling over those cutters. I favour the two deer!

  3. great post!!! I have a magdalena rug in mind for years but I have to many projects as it is

  4. Awesome cookie cutters and great idea! Janice

  5. what fun! I have often used cookie cutter images for my rug inspiration...love the birds and the cat...

  6. I love the simplicity of design with these old cookie cutters. Soooo, when can we expect to see yours 😊 I know it will be beautiful.

  7. Great history, , and love the cutters!
    So primitive!
    Love the old simple mats, use what u had style!
    Thanks for sharing,,,,
    Weather activity coming in later today into tonite and tomorrow to be nasty!
    We did have a wonderful , sunny day yesterday,, mcold but pleasant,,,
    Have a great day!


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