Sunday, January 31, 2021

Update on White Horse with Scrolls

But first, for those wondering....I've not yet picked up those knitting needles to either start the cap or to practice on the already started Bev shawl; I will get there.  And that mess has been cleaned up, organized and know where to find the needles.  

The original antique rug was hooked and advertised as a white horse and although my horse isn't real white, that is how I'm naming it to keep the name different from another horse with scrolls design.
There is a winter advisory for our state, it is snowing right now with just a dusting so far.  With the combination of snow and rain along with strong wind and low temps I'm not going anywhere.  Plans are to make a pot of chili for dinner.  

I'm running thru a tank of propane fast ('backup stage') since a heat pump does not do the job when the ground temperatures are below 36*.  The second stage heat source kicks in and propane goes quite fast AND expensive.   I checked and went thru 10% just this week.  I'm down to 35% fill so will need to call tomorrow for a refill I think. 

Wishing you all well and hope you are keeping entertained.  The Covid quarantine doesn't seem as bad during the winter when we'd be stuck inside anyway.  Keep yourself entertained with the crafts you enjoy, the books you like to read or whatever else floats your boat.


Thursday, January 28, 2021

OH MY WORD, Look What I Found

 Went searching for the proper size needles to knit the cap [almost automatically typed hook instead of knit so don't be surprised it I do it again and not catch it] and boy did I open up a can of worms.  Oops worms refers to hooking too 😊.  Sure have a big mess to deal with now before doing anything fun as this mess needs a little organizing.

Did find some needles ~ the long straight ones in that 80s flower designed container and one short circular needle but I've more double pointed circular ones somewhere.  See the pastel skein of wool tucked in there?
It is another full skein of yarn to continue work on the Bev Conway shawl pattern she gave me.  So I was successful in casting on and knitting sometime during the 23 years living here.  Guess I should practice on this before starting my cap.
In the same antique crock I found these..... Oh my word, I don't think I worked on that sweater since living in California.   It appears the back and sides are done, one sleeve done and the other sleeve started.  Then the button front sections to finish.  It must have a collar so that would need to be done too; am sure the pattern is close by.  Am not ready to tackle this so it will go in a separate tote as a well aged UFO.  

For you knitters out there, I love the way my Icelandic friend taught me to do the ribbed cuffs and waist band.  For that effect one knits and purls in the BACK of the stitch to get that nice rib and elastic effect.
Looking inside the belly of the antique crock with even more goodies stuff.  The crock was my paternal grandfather's, he and I made grape wine in that bad boy many many moons ago.
Thankfully knitting helpful aides were inside also to determine the size of those loose needles and a knitting counter to keep track of where you are.  But its only helpful IF you remember to move the peg over every row 
Also found another ball of Lopi and a packaged adjustable circular needles.
This is the inside of that Denise Knitting Needle ensemble.
Okay this is a WARNING!  Do not be sipping anything when reading beyond this paragraph.  Otherwise you will choke, spit out what's in your mouth or thru your nose.  

Ready for a belly laugh?  Before my friend Katla taught me to knit the European way I only knew how to crochet.  I was in my late 20s at the time so remember that as you continue.  At that age I was a slim perky  young woman and thought I'd crochet myself a bathing suit 😃😄😁.  Thank goodness it never got finished and it never will be.  
Right now I'm overwhelmed with the mess I've made so need to put that mess in orderly groups with like yarn but ultimately in a UFO spot.  Gather my needles and put them in their jackets, Then ya know what I'm going to do next?????   HOOK for relaxation.

Do what floats your boat, keeps your blood pressure down and makes you happy, etc.


Wednesday, January 27, 2021

Thinking Beyond Horse and Scrolls

Have started thinking about what to do once Horse and Scrolls rug is hooked ~ actually there's still a bit more of whipped edge on Over the Moon yet left to do.  But binding is low on my entertainment and fun level so it will wait.

Am contemplating dusting off my knitting needles IF I can find them; the next hurdle would be if I remember how to cast on.  Not convinced it is like riding a bicycle because a couple years ago I tried casting on and had to find the 'beginner' book.  Then lost interest in learning to hook socks and stopped.  Will probably resort to those same beginner instructions if the 'like riding a bike' theory doesn't work.

I have lots of Icelandic Lopi left which I tried selling on ebay and since it didn't sell perhaps that was an omen that my knitting days weren't over. Below is a picture of the cap I think I'll attempt since I like the length.  
These caps below look nice too but I don't want to 'think' about how many rows to add to make it longer ~ just want it as simple as possible....IF that is possible since my knitting mojo may be lost somewhere.
Dang, just remembered I haven't worn my Icelandic ponchos or sweaters I knitted after having them cleaned.  Next time I go to the grocery store that is what will be on me!!!!  Wool is WARM.

Here's my Icelandic Lopi stash. The first photo has tan and grey which would be my colors to use toward my face at my age and coloring but not sure if there is enough ~ will have to check the pattern.
There's lots of darker brown but don't want those at my face but would be good for the design.
Yet there's plenty plus of the white Lopi in balls which I have posted a picture of here and have some plates which aren't pictured here.  Think those plates are meant for spinning.
Hopefully I can get a new cap knitted for myself then will try once more to sell my stash on ebay.  Once I've exhausted my last knitting experience to hopefully a successful cap, will trade in my knitting needles for the Hartman Hook again.


Monday, January 25, 2021

Blogger Friendships

Since starting my blog I've gotten to know and established great friendships with people I've never met.  When they do a new blog post it is like a door opening to welcome you in for a conversation, sit a spell  and share a cup of tea and see what they have been doing.  

Some of my blogger friends and I communicate daily even without a new blog post.  That is tantamount especially since this pandemic has put us in isolation plus the added winter time.

All of my blogger friends are talented and, like Lauren I was a lucky recipient of water color gifts from Donna from A little this and a Little That blog.  These came in the mail to me today.  
Take a look at the detail on that mushroom on the left.  I was wondering what that would look like hooked.  Was interesting too see see the bold letters of 'STASH' on the tea bag.  It struck me funny as we rug hookers know all too well about the 'stash' of wool we own.  In the mornings I need/want my coffee but from time to time do enjoy a cup-o-tea.  Me thinks tomorrow afternoon with it raining outside I'll have a cup of that Earl Grey 'black tea noir'.  Now that I'm looking forward to.  THANK YOU Donna!!!



Sunday, January 24, 2021


With the emphasis more on hearts as I just finished those two blue hearts in front.  Thought I needed some blue to go with the Cat's Meow antique adaptation.  They are stuffed with snippets and lavender, ooh they smell good.
And the addition of those hearts would also enhance the look of Horses and Hearts, which is a design by Marion Ham.  The pattern was provided as a free to draw design in the American Folk Art Crafts book.  
The pattern in the book has more than 6 horses but whoever drew it did the condensed version which I purchased at a great price during a sale at Cape May rug camp.
The horse rug is on my table now and must admit I like it better now than after I  finished hooking it.  At the time I was sick of hooking all those horses and hearts so put it away and this is the first time I've unrolled and displayed it since.

Here is the book the pattern is featured in.
Happy Sunday and happy hooking,


Thursday, January 21, 2021


Flashing back to 1980 when my first husband Gary, son Greg and I visited Monterey, California.  We lived in the east Bay area of San Ramon along the San Andreas fault 😞 but would cross over the Golden Gate Bridge to visit San Francisco often as well as Carmel, Monterey, Santa Cruz and other tourist sites.   

Here's Gary and Greg beside a long retired train.
Me on the caboose of said train.
In the photo album I've loads of photos but just picked a couple for today.  Here is Doc Ricketts' building who was friends of the local working girls of the area.  If you have read John Steinbeck's Cannery Row then you will be familiar with the name.  Click on the link above to learn more about the real Doc Ricketts.
This is, or was, the coolest bar and was near the wharf.  What you don't see are the vintage cars hanging on the side of the wall or the car doors which opened the restrooms.  Note the stop light in the background.  Don't know if the place still exists as I left California after Gary died in 1981.
We did a lot of touristy things in the 3 years living in California but sadly one of them was not visiting wine country.  Boy I would have loved that for sure.


Tuesday, January 19, 2021

White Horse With Scrolls

Thought you might like to see a more recent photo of my progress or lack there of on the antique adaptation White Horse with scrolls.  
Am happy with choosing a dark border vs. the light as in the original antique shown below.  Yet I love the light border too and it was hard to decide which to do.
Have a small heart drawn so think I'll spend the rest of the evening working on that.  Happy hooking.


Sunday, January 17, 2021

A Favorite Type of Blog Post

The largest number of visitors show up when I post an antique rug show; by far larger number of viewers.  So perhaps it is time for another show.

First one is 2 cats with scallop border measuring 25 x 44 and hooked early 20th century.  A good use of left over worms too without the hit and miss look.
A  geometric which the auction site called a Spider Web design.  But it reminds me of the early days of TV with a test pattern 
before the hour shows would begin on the station.  Rug dimensions are  27 x 48 hooked in the 1920s.
A very worn rug of a Dove hooked 
1898.  It measures 30 x 49, here is the front.
You can see the original colors were a light value and one would have assumed the rug to have faded a lot from looking at the front.  Also notice how they use to hook their rugs by folding over the edge of the foundation (mostly burlap) then hooking thru both layers to protect the edge without having to bind the rug.
The Brown Dog rug below was located in 
Downingtown, PA and hooked in 1900s.  If you tap on the photo it should enlarge and you can see it was hooked with homespun mostly.  It measures 20 x 30.
Two dark dogs from a Maine estate collection hooked in the 1900s.
Another dog rug and this one has a scallop border.  It measures 31.5 x 40 and from the 20th century.  This is the front; just love it when the auction house shows the back for original color comparison.
And a back view; notice again it is not bound but uses the same technique as described above.
With a close up of the top left corner.  
1930 Eagle chair pad.
Definitely not my colors, but here is an Abstract Floral measuring 25 x 40.
Chickens hooked early 20th century, located in Downingtown, PA.  Size is 25 x 45.
A 1900s Beaver with the Grenfell Labrador Industries Label attached.  From Delray Beach, FL.  If you newbie rug hookers would like to learn about the Greenfell Labrador project click HERE.
A landscape named Cottage Under Big Tree by the auction house, measures 27.5 x 41.  Said to be hooked early 20th century.
And for an even dozen rugs and since Valentine's is nearing, here is a Hand in Heart with hit and miss background circa 1920 provenance Garth's auctions 22 x 45.

Happy Sunday and happy hooking.


Friday, January 15, 2021

Silly Dye Mistake

Today I felt like pulling out the dye pots but didn't want to pull out all that stuff, you know....the spoons, recipes, dye packets, measuring cups, mask, etc.  Instead I looked on my shelf of leftover recipes already mixed.  

There were two Karen Kahle recipes ~ in one jar was Faded Apricot, the other jar was Tawny each with a note on top to add 1/2 yard or more per quantity.   Okay, so pulled wool and soaked.  Note to self: (go for more and soak just in case.)

Two pots on the stove and put the remaining liquid in each pot, stirred and put in the wool.  Quite soon, and since I'm a primitive hooker the vivid colors hurt my eyes.  I scrambled to the wool room and grabbed more wool and didn't bother to soak and just put it in the pot.  

Colors were still too bright for me so went to the liquid collection and saw a jar of 'light brown' to tone down colors.  Hell, don't think there was enough of that light brown to tone down these jobs.

What I SHOULD HAVE DONE, and what I have done in the past is put just  a couple tablespoons of the dye in the pot and repeat to see the results developing as I go.  But no, I just dumped the whole damn thing in the pot.  This first photo is with a flash and strangely more realistic to what hurt my eyes ~ that would be the wool on the left.
The bottom photo is without a flash and would be more acceptable to my primitive eyes IF that is what it looked like.
So newbie dyers take a lesson from me and you'd think I'd have learned by now.  Guess I was over zealous about dyeing for a little diversity in the lock down.


Wednesday, January 13, 2021

MAIL, as in USPS

July 26, 1775 Benjamin Franklin became the first Post Master General even tho there wasn't much mail being transmitted between people at that that time.  

The Postman was a movie Kevin Costner starred in where I think there was a line like...'thru wind, rain, sleet and snow your mail will be delivered'.  Or something to that effect.  Well what the hell has happened despite the exorbitant rising costs of shipping?

On December 6, 2020 I ordered a pattern from Cushing and just received it yesterday January 12, 2021 ~ it took 37 days to get here from Wells, Maine.  FYI I do NOT blame Cushing as I've always received my orders from them in a timely fashion.  Anyhoo......

Here is my late birthday/early Christmas present to myself arriving after the new year 😂.
Not sure I'll hook either of these this winter because I've still a rug on the frame and want to hook a heart or so next. But who knows what this fickle hooker will choose to do.  For sure will need to watch Lisanne's tutorial on hooking a plaid for the ice skates piece.  Thanks Lisanne!


Monday, January 11, 2021


This morning as I was waking up stars were on my mind.  Before the new year the subject of new years resolutions was written about on some blogs.  And in the past I'd make a resolution but end up breaking it.  Yet I did say to myself....'hope I'll finally work on the star quilt again sometime this year'.  The last time I worked on and blogged about it was 2017.  Good grief!  that was four years ago.  If you'd like to read those posts you can see them HERE.

I even  surprised myself today by assembling a few more blocks.  Honestly don't know how many blocks are needed to finish the never-ending at least decade long quilt project because I didn't assess that today.  But did sew 5 more blocks.
Perhaps after I've had a couple days to catch up on pulling loops on my dear horse rug I'll check thru the box with the quilt and determine what is needed.  Surely that fabric is aging as fast or faster a rate than I am 😕 so need to finish it. 

Have assembled my mitten with heart and not ready to hang it since it's not February yet.  I'll get some greenery and have a couple fabric hearts to put in the mix or perhaps I'll have to hook a couple small ones to insert.
After blogging the start of my hooked mitten project and Kindred Spirits booklet friend and follower Nancy Kilrain remembered she had that booklet and had plans to make two for her twin grandchildren.  She posted her first mitten on FB with a delightful braided hanger... UH, an idea I stole from her ~ thanks Nancy.  By the way Nancy, in all honesty I like your hooked version better than mine.  Yours has more character and mine is rather stagnant.  Hey!  Give credit where credit is due.  Good job gal!
Happy Monday, plans are to pull a LOT of loops tomorrow which will make me happier.


Saturday, January 9, 2021

Miscellaneous Chit Chat

Update on my serger ~ I picked it up this afternoon, serged the pattern and it is on its way to Eau Claire, Wisconsin.  While the Bernette is back working again with only a threading issue I still see a need for a backup serger.  

A friend gave me a New Home My Lock serger which is seized up.  Instead of buying another it might be worthwhile having it looked at and repaired vs. spending $500 or more on a second serger.  During my on-line search did see a Utube video of someone fixing a seized up Janome serger so maybe I've nothing to lose by getting a screw driver and do what that guy did if oiling the machine doesn't fix the problem first.

Truth is I still haven't accomplished much in the way of hooking but will give an update on the Horse with Scrolls rug anyway.
Between the horse's front and back legs on the original antique there is a light hooked strip but not sure I'll keep mine as hooked.  Also not convinced on the leaf colors either.  What I do know for sure is that hooking makes me happy and I'm about to get back to it with a glass of cabernet knowing my pattern orders are shipped and my serger is working fine for the time being.

Happy Saturday and happy hooking.


Thursday, January 7, 2021

Busy but No Hooking

The very minimum amount of loops have been pulled the last two days and not sure many will be pulled today.  Tuesday I drew and shipped three rug hooking patterns; they were Antique Black Kitten:
Posies and Stars, 
plus Antique Pot of Flowers, all of which were to one person.
Then yesterday I had three orders; one person wanted the small version of Horse and Scrolls.
another person wanted Cat's Meow.
The third person wanted an antique adaptation I'd not drawn before so a master pattern needed to be made before I could draw it out on linen.  
Then things went to hell.  I did get the master paper pattern done, cut the linen went to serge the edges and the thread broke.  This is an old totally metal but work horse Bernette by Bernina.  I inherited it from a friend a few years ago and it came in handy after my newer model Bernette died.  

I worked over an hour to try rethreading it and even have the manual but the damn thing wouldn't do the proper stitch and that same thread was missing something.  So I dropped it off at a local sewing center this afternoon.  However, the person who works on sergers is off today.  I'm confident it is just the threading but am having it serviced too.  

I'm dependent on a serger as I do NOT like glued edges which some teachers do to patterns they sell (had a couple and very disappointed they put something like that out there), I've seen some people using tape on the edge but think that is tacky too and wouldn't want to do that with mine and surely wouldn't sell a pattern like that.  So I've alerted the young lady I'll contact her tomorrow.

So you're thinking...'what's wrong with hooking now?'   Well, because after I walk to pick up my mail I'm coming home to make a pot of vegetable soup.  I love a bowl of warm vegetable soup, left overs for a couple days and also freeze some.  But boy it takes forever to chop those veggies.