Saturday, February 29, 2020

Posies and Stars Update

Per usual I could have been further along if I hadn't pulled out and re-hooked a couple areas over and over. 
The bottom left corner was completely hooked then all pulled out.  Most likely I'll continue to do that to the rest of the border until I'm happy.  The bottom looks crooked since the corner is filled with wool while the rest of the bottom is almost empty...but then you all knew that.

I drew mine out 21.5 x 21.5 and am hooking it with an additional row beyond the line.

For reference, here is a photo of the original antique.  It won't look exactly like the antique but sure wish I could even get a little close.  My colors are either too bright or to dark ~ but, am using what I  have.
Still haven't drawn out the project for April camp.  Am trying to get brave enough since I don't know if I want to frame it with a couple rows of wool or left plain.  Could draw and extra wide margin, but hate to waste foundation only to be cut away and put in the trash.

Happy Saturday.


Thursday, February 27, 2020

Throwback Thursday

It has been about 8 years since I stopped doing artisan shows and while the extra pocket money was nice I don't miss the work involved to prepare, load up, set up, tear down, load up and unload the items back to their place.

At that time I made primitive, whimsical and artsy dolls then began hooking items to sell.  Small mats and purses were among the most popular but did sell a couple larger rugs .  The very first purse I hooked was a pattern from a Kindred Spirits booklet.  I kept the original to use as my 'money bag' at craft shows.
Then used the shape to design others.  Each was lined with a small pocket and snap closure.
Cat purses were very popular so they sold as soon as one was hooked.

Hooked A Scrappy Cat purse with a primitive cat design.
These two purses had a button closure.
I loved this Distlefink design by Lori Brechlin and of course it sold too.  
Two more with button closures.
There were many more purses made and sold over the years and don't have photos of all.  Wow, looking back I sure did hook a lot of purses.

Speaking about purses..... my friend and frequent camp roomie Deb hooked one for me.  I used it for a while but was afraid of ruining it so now it hangs as a piece of art in my home.  It has a purchased twisted cord strap.  Maybe I'll use it when going to April camp so I can show it to Cindy Irwin.  Think she will be impressed with Deb's talent.
Happy hooking and hope the purses have piqued your creative self.


Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Planning for April's Class

I've been dragging my feet in drawing a pattern for April's rug camp in Ocean City, MD.   My teacher will be Cindy Irwin who I have had and enjoyed before and a great one to have for my project.

The main reason I've been dragging my feet is not knowing what to hook.  At first my project was going to be The Cousins rug.  Due to size and required detail this became an overwhelming thought as April was approaching.
Recently I selected an old photo of my mother gazing into a fishbowl.  Even as a kid that photo was a favorite of mine.  But still the thought of hooking it is daunting.  
The photo has so much distortion and detail left to the imagination ~ for instance, is that mother's left arm holding the left side of the bowl?  

I tried working on the sketch little by little.  Each time reaching close to a frustration level walked away to work on it later.  Finally today the pattern was enlarged using the Paint technique I posted about previously.
This will NOT be a narrow cut project.  My goal is to hook it in sepia and use #8 but will use smaller cuts  as needed.  The pattern will be 14 x 16 and believe I can pull this off.   I did print it out in a larger size but thought it looked too big.

Sunday, February 23, 2020


Thought it time to show you progress on the antique adaptation which I have named "Posies and Stars".  The original antique was shown on a previous blog post.  I drew this to measure 211/2  x 21 1/2.  Would make a nice big pillow or nice small mat.  I'm going for the mat as I've plenty of hooked pillows in the living room.
Am really looking forward to hooking the border but won't start that until all the central portion is finished.  Want to be sure my hooking rhythm for both parts is consistent and not broken up into segments.

Happy hooking, quilting or stitching ~ whichever floats your boat.


Friday, February 21, 2020


I enlarge my patterns by using the PAINT program which came with the computer.  You can find it under WINDOWS Accessories.

Once you have drawn or found an image you wish to enlarge scan it or save a photo of it on your computer.  Print out the image onto one piece of paper so you can measure the dimensions….. let’s say it measures 6 ½” x 9”.  If it is a new drawing scan and crop picture close to the exterior lines and save in a document.   If it is a drawing already saved on your computer you can just follow the next step without scanning.

Hover over the document and RIGHT click, OPEN .
Then choose PRINT again, then Page Set up.  

ORIENTATION: choose if you want to print the pages in ‘portrait’ or ‘landscape’  
You can see in the diagram below it is sitting in 'landscape' format but you can select 'portrait' if you wish.  The margins are also automatically set but that will be changed as you will see.....
MARGINS: type “0” (zero) in the 4 blocks and you will see it change to its default
Next you need to determine what size you want your rug.  The copy you are working with is, as stated above, 6 ½ x 9.  If you enlarge the picture 250% you would end up with several pieces of paper which will give you a design approx. 16 ¼” x 22½ ”.  So get out your calculator and decide what percentage increase you want, or if it is a Polly Minick design the book will tell you what percentage to increase the pattern for the desired size..

Now SCALING: the Adjust To will show 100% but you will change that to the percentage of increase you want.
Select PRINT again, lay them on a table, trim the pages (I always trim the right side and bottom so the lines match), tape them together and voila.

If the print doesn’t come out dark enough I use a wide black marker to make the lines stand out.  I never use red dot anymore, I draw my exterior lines on my foundation and place the pattern below my linen, pin it and draw.

Good luck and hope this tutorial has been helpful.


Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Bits of This and That

Guess it's no surprise I've started a new project; here is a sneak peak of  a small section.  Am sure you will be able to decide what I'm working on just from this.
Yesterday I started binding Lancaster Barnyard during the over 2 hours spent at the eye doctor's office.  Thankfully there was the rug to work on as I do understand how doctors are dedicated to give patients the time they need and things get backed up.  I don't like it but understand.

My cataract surgery was done October and December 2016 and new glasses purchased in 2017 and have not been back to an eye doctor since.  Noticed my left eye vision is somewhat blurry and had itchy and encrusted eye lids in the morning.  Thought it time to have my eyes checked again.  

Long story short it is allergies causing the itching and crustiness.  He prescribed an over the counter eye drop which used to be a prescription and is no longer:  Zaditor.  He said it is like an antihistamine for the eye and better than some other prescription drops for the eye.  I picked it up today.  It comes in store brand names but the main ingredient is KETOTIFEN.  I purchased a Walmart brand under the label of 'itchy eye relief' or some such name but main ingredient was ketotifen.  

However......the reason for my blurry left eye is scar tissue from the cataract surgery.  The doctor who did the surgery advised me before surgery that sometimes this happens.  My right eye is fine, but the left has scar tissue.  

So far it has been a mild winter with high 50s and sometimes low 60s.  Today I took some photos of daffodils blooming in my yard and crocus have been above ground for a few days now.

When walking to the mailbox also noticed forsythia blooms and even blossoms on some trees.  Guess all that is the culprit to my recent eye itching and crustiness.  Tomorrow will be a shock to these beautiful plants but also to me.  Figured it was too good to last but it was fun while it was here.


Monday, February 17, 2020


..with the emphasis on 'all hooked'.  The rug still needs to be steamed and bound but hooking is complete.    Happy I finally hooked this design by Lori Brechlin since it has been on my 'to do' list for a couple years.  
Kudo's to Lori's designing of the chickens' feathers and leaf encroaching the border and beauty line ~ I loved hooking it the entire time and watching the rug develop.

That said, there's also something exciting about preparing to start a new rug.  This one will be another antique adaptation.  Yeah I know it's not very artistically creative but antique rugs were the reason my journey to learn how to hook is what put me here.  So stay tuned to see wazup.


Saturday, February 15, 2020

What Shall I HOOK Next?

At this very minute the Lancaster Barnyard is close to being done so need something on my frame soon.  Therefore it is time for me to peruse my updated list on my "to do" rugs.

This one was in my last wanna do rugs.  Love the blotchy background, neutral hit and miss borderh and primitive flowers.  It could be a small table mat, great pattern to offer and easy to hook.
Love this antique basket of flowers
Another flower design I'm interested in is this one below.  But ya notice a trend here?  I'm salivating over old gold or dirty gold colors.
The antique rug below is nice but doesn't float my boat like the ones above.  Still looking.
The Eagle, Lions and Stars rug is a great departure from the floral rugs.  It also has a regal and patriotic appeal.
Ahhhh, forgot about this antique rug of Horse and Buggy.  Just look at this beauty.  
There is also a geometric with horses in the corner.  Obviously I'm in a gold mood.
Another horse of course ~ lovely subject, blotchy border, primitive scrolls.  What's not to like?
Love birds with hearts would be a great wedding rug; it is nice but not for me to hook. For you out there looking for a wedding rug this would be great.  Of course I'd make the yellow  more into a rich gold instead of a mellow yellow.
SO what to do??  I know there is the upcoming rug camp rug which will need to be drawn and some wool dying.  But haven't decided on which rug to draw for camp yet either.  

Since Lancaster Barnyard is so close to being finished (with hooking that is, not binding) need to have something to put on the frame immediately.  Surely don't want to go thru withdrawal 😁.


Friday, February 14, 2020

Happy Valentine's Day

Valentines Day Hearts have been on display here for the last couple weeks.  Entering the front door this is on my sofa table.  The hooked Heart Butter mold design is from Primitive HeartstringsIn the wicker basket are hooked and stuffed hearts.  The center big red heart was a giveaway generously provided and hooked by Lauren of Rugs and Pugs a couple years ago.
In the kitchen on the harvest table is this antique adaptation called Glazer Hearts and pattern offered by Woodland Junction.  Before next Valentine's Day me thinks a couple hooked and stuffed hearts in colors in the rug need to be made.
Yesterday I received a couple surprises in the mail from friend Deb.  My digital camera has been showing signs of death and received two digital cameras from Deb and Skip.  What a surprise Valentine's gift they were.  Now I've time before rug camp to learn how to use them.


Thursday, February 13, 2020


This is an over 3 decade 'throwback'.  While looking thru a box of my mother's old photos I found this clipping she saved.  Back in the day when I was younger, bones stronger and joints more flexible I was a runner.  

When there was an upcoming race I'd train after work and in the morning during weekends.  It was important to keep up the endurance of the lungs and mobility of the legs and joints.  Am proud to say that I won several trophies and gifts for my efforts.  Again, the emphasis is 'back in the day'.  Here is that article recently found.
The year I turned 50 I ran my last 10K race (6.2 miles).  Tho I ran shorter races after that sadly I stopped running all together.  Now wish I'd  kept up with mild training just to keep my muscles and limbs active.  Just the thought of running now makes me hurt all over.  But then I'm decades older than in that photo above.  
Now I find satisfaction and comfort in sitting and hooking rugs.  But I DO WALK ~ not as much walking as when there was a fur companion in the home but still do walk to stay active.

So its not such a boring post thought I'd add another 'throwback Thursday' addition by this TRUE CONFESSIONS from last year's February Throwback Thursday.  Just click on the hyperlink above.


Tuesday, February 11, 2020


Thought I'd show what progress has been made to the Lori Brechlin design known as "Lancaster Barnyard".  You can purchase this PDF design from Lori by clicking the link and purchasing from her etsy site.
Had the pattern for a couple years and finally working on it.  Am hooking mostly #8.5 with some #8.  The leaves are a mixture of bright and dull/dark herringbone and another dull plaid.  Figured that if hooked in the 1880s it would have been hooked with whatever they had anyway.  The dark/dull herringbone is a rescued man's suit coat.


Sunday, February 9, 2020

Had an Idea this Morning

Immediately upon waking up I had a thought ~ it's as if someone sent it to me.  More on that later.....

April rug camp is moving in closer and had decided to hook "The Cousins".  Here's the photo:
The sketch:
I advised my teacher Cindy Irwin this was my initial plan, would be hooked in most #8 with more narrow where needed.  But confided I had concerns on getting a small green plaid for one skirt and blue plaid for the other.

A couple days later I wrote Cindy again saying I'd decided to hook the rug in sepia monochrome colors.  I've never hooked a monochrome rug before and it seemed interesting.  However did say that in case the project became too overwhelming (and camp is supposed to be fun) I'd take a back-up primitive small piece to hook.

So this morning it was as if my Mother was speaking to me from heaven.  Was reminded of two photos I adorded; one with my  mother and me on a bench and another when she was pregnant with me looking at a fishbowl.  

This one would be a challenge because the photo is so old and have never hooked translucent water in a fishbowl.
Kept looking and didn't find the original photo of us in matching plaid skirts and perhaps it is in a photo album recently loaned to my brother.  But in searching previously saved scanned photos did find this one with Mother and me on a dock.  Actually this might be even nicer to hook than the other.
Now I've a question for you who dye you have a recipe for sepia?  

You who are regular followers know I'm a fickle hooker so who knows what will go to camp with me.  Before I decide I've some sketching to do but can promise there WILL be a back up 😁.


Friday, February 7, 2020

Lancaster Barnyard

With all the recent Murphy's Law happenings here there hasn't been a lot of hooking done but will show what has been done.  Knowing there is a primitive black background I'm auditioning colors for the leaves and stem.

None of my wool choices I own suited me.  I'm sure Kris or Barb would have had just the perfect color.  Mine seemed either too bright or too dark.  Or the color of green didn't go with the turquoise.  The two green pieces above the rug in the first photo is what was used in the photo below.
Another choice of wool is what I placed on top of the hooked stem.  But it doesn't really look much different than what is hooked....or at least in the photo.
In the photo below is a herringbone placed on top and a tad different look.
And the picture below is the over dyed light green which might be too light unless it is used only for highlights of a leaf.  
Okay....will try to condense my troubles since last week.....

~~Washer died and as the dryer was also 25 years old bought a new one also.  The purchase happened on Friday 1/31.

~~THEN my heat went out sometime Saturday night but didn't realize until a cold house on SUPER BOWL SUNDAY.  Oh great!  Call an HVAC man on Super Bowl Sunday????

~~  Bless his heart, he did show up after his daughter's cheerleading event and got my emergency heat (propane) up and running.  Something had blown a fuse in the furnace and would come back on Monday to figure out the problem.  Which he said must have just been an electrical surge as there were no wires touching metal which would cause a short.  

~~Back to the washer/dryer......Ordered Friday and upon delivery of the washer Tuesday 2/4 the dryer had a huge dent in the front and side so refused it.  Delivery for a dryer replacement was to be Thursday 2/6 with a 4 hour window between 1:30 - 5:30 pm.  At 5 p.m. received a recorded message saying delivery now between 5- 9 p.m.

~~Immediately picked up the phone and called XPO (who our Lowes uses for delivery) and told them changed a 4 hour window into an 8 hour window and was NOT acceptable.  Continued by saying they would have to rearrange their truck because I would NOT accept anything after 7 p.m.

~~Later last night I received another recorded message saying delivery would be Monday.  Uh this was Thursday evening.  Still not acceptable.

~~ 7 a.m. this morning (Friday, 2/7) a call came in with delivery at 8:30 this morning.  

~~FYI, I haven't even spoken about the fact when the dryer was pulled away from the wall that the vent hose wasn't connected to the dryer.  No wonder it took several cycles for the clothes to finally dry.

~~and...when another contractor came in to replace the vent hose under the house (Lowes delivery doesn't do that) it was discovered a big hole in the vent hose under the house with a nest made of insulation made by...uh mice?

So I've many items needing to be addressed here at home.  This stress has caused havoc with my intestines and very tired.  Hope I get a good nights sleep as my body and brain needs a rest.


Tuesday, February 4, 2020

It's That Time Again...... (updated version)

...antique rug show time.  I found some sweet and some humorous old rugs for you to enjoy.

Below is Roses and Strawberries rug hooked in 1859.  I measures  38.5 x 71.  I have always admired old gold and red combination rugs.
Hooked late 19th or early 20th century is this horse with pine trees in the corner.  The colors and design give it a western appeal, it measures 36 x 39.
Below is a country folk art rug with hit and miss border, it was hooked 1900 - 1939.  Not sure if those are horse shoe shapes with an O in the middle or some other significance.  The rug measures 20 x 40.
Below is the back side so you can see the colors didn't fade a lot.
I've often said I don't like bright colors but this one with a bright background piques my interest.  Naturally the blotchy colors of the dog and circle colors adds.  Hooked early 20th century and didn't get dimensions.
A Cow and Calf hooked rug measuring 24 x 34 and don't have a date of hooking but it is obviously old.   
Below shows the back side which shows the last rows of hooking were done thru the folded burlap sealing the edge as it was hooked.  No need for binding.  One day I want to try that.
Flowers with a tongue border hooked late 19th century and measures 19 x 37. 
This is a HOOT.  An adorable hooked piece which I think would be fun to replicate.  Named Fat Man it consists of wool and burlap, 1916 Burgessille, Ontario 29 x 40 collection of Jim and Ilona Flemming.
A view of the back.  Sorry the photo on the auction site was on the floor and on the side and I straightened the photo upright which causes the distortion.
Another cute rug is the Cat, Dog and Mouse hooked between 1880-1910 and part of the Garland Warren Americana Collection measures 20 x 33.

NOTE:  Like Gail (see her comment) my initial thought it was a kitten and not a mouse.  You can check out the listing HERE to see their wording.
You can see the true colors in what is exposed of the back.
As for my heat issue, thank God the temperatures are very mild right now on the east coast.  My HVAC guy stopped by on Sunday and preliminary investigation said there was a short in the heat pump which blew a fuse in the furnace when it went from electric heat to Stage 2 using propane.  So he replaced a fuse in the furnace which provided me with emergency heat (expensive propane) to fill the void until the repair.  

He was to come back yesterday (Monday) to figure out the problem but his daughter got sick so picked her up from school and didn't get here.  HOPEFULLY he will get here today around noon as he'd indicated.