Monday, July 31, 2023


Making changes to this piece has been stressful each time it is put on my frame.  Over the course of a few days I worked on it little by little.  But could only stand a few minutes each time.  If you want to see the some of the transition, you can view the previous update HERE

These are a few changes made ~ shifted some wool on the nose to reduce the ski nose; changed the brow, used ONE (1) dark brown thread from a strip of wool for the eyelash line, changed to a lighter value strip in the fingers, along the hair line, and shadow line in the ear to a lighter value.  

Today I had to put her aside and may or may not pull her out to change the value of wool under her chin.  But have until September before Cape May to decide.  I have thought about just why it stresses me and here are the reasons:
 * mostly because it is a very personal portrait to me
 * pulling apart pieces of my mother albeit for improvement
 * working with a fine cut which I hate but required to achieve a portrait 
 * and fear of making the mat worse with the tweaks              

That said, here is an update on my Mother's portrait as of 7/30/2023.  
If Mother goes to Cape May with me this year she just may go go to camp as is.  Time will tell.  Again, here is a view of the photo I went by.
My attempt at getting Mother perfect like the photo didn't happen and can still see things I should change, but will I?

Tomorrow will be August and can't believe we are more than halfway thru the year of 2023.


Saturday, July 29, 2023


I've done a tad more tweaking on Mother's mat but not ready to show photos yet as I want to work on her eye again.  Frankly I can only stand a little at a time tweaking as it is stressful for me.  So will show you some old rugs instead.

Lovely rug of birds with fern-like scrolls measuring 35.5 x 58; no date provided.
Here is a close up of a corner on the  back.  Must have some age to it as the rug was hooked though all layers to the edge as they did 'back in the day'.
At first glance the rug below looks more like a painting, but it is a hooked rug and was listed on Bidsquare.  Sadly I couldn't obtain any more info.
The cat must have been more important to the hooker than the dog as it  is more prominent.  Hooked late 19th century and measures 17 x 58.
Here is a close up of the bird in flight so you can see the variety of textiles used.
Primitive floral with scrolls  ~ 25 x 34.
A geometric hooked early 20th century and measuring 24 x 36.
Here is a closer view of a corner.
Another geo of sorts is this standing wool rug made in the 1800's measuring 27 x 50.
Here is a close up. Bet it was a plush and cushy rug to stand on.
Horse with soft or faded colors and measuring 27.5 x 41.  Wish I could have seen the back to determine if it was faded or hooked in pastel colors.
A Jester sitting on sliver of a moon said to be hooked1940 so not really an antique.  Dimensions are 18 x 36.
Here is a back view and appears to be hooked on burlap
Happy weekend despite the heat and humidity.  But hear next week will be a welcomed temperature change.


Thursday, July 27, 2023


Yup, get'n close to the finish line.  
Am sure all of you are wondering what will be on my frame next.  You know I enjoy having a 'plus one' to work on when getting bored or frustrated with the main rug.  And have already decided what the plus one is.  Yet that one just might end up being on the frame until the perfect main rug is located.  There were several in the running but I changed my mind before enlarging the pattern and drawing it.  You know, fickle me.

Temperature today is in the high 90's with humidity the feel like is in the triple digits.  Tomorrow and Saturday temperatures will be even higher.  Thank goodness Monday it is supposed to be back to normal for this time of year and in the 80's.  Can't wait until Monday rolls around.


Tuesday, July 25, 2023


I've been unhappy with my attempt to hook my Mother and Fishbowl properly.  Since Cape May camp is just a little over 6 weeks away decided to tackle tweaking it a little more.  Frankly I'm surprised there are any linen threads left at the eye area as many times as it has been tweaked.

June 2022 this is what my dear mother's portrait looked like and I wasn't happy with the eye then.
So a couple days ago decided to tweak it and just made matters worse.  In this photo the mat is still on the frame and at a closer distance.  And I made the eye worse for sure, looks like it is popping out.
Today I did another attempt at the eye and even changed the brow color.
Here is the original photo I loved to look at as a kid and as an adult.  Then when the hooking habit happened decided I wanted to try and capture her with wool.
Am still not pleased because mother didn't have a ski nose, her lips, eye and brow still don't look like her.  I can see the arch of the brow needs to be lowered and perhaps a hint of a darker value from that to the iris.  While I can see what needs to be done I am not able to execute those changes.  Hey, I'm not McGowan trained y'all , lol.

So sometime between now and Cape May I'll try another tweak because unless I'm proud to show this work my dear mother won't be making it to Cape May with me.  

Monday, July 24, 2023


You may have seen a few of these on FB posted by someone who visits the same auction houses as me.  But for those of you who don't use FB they will be new.  If I didn't already have a few chicken/rooster rugs I'd be tempted to hook this one.
The Native American rug below doesn't quality as an antique since it was hooked in the 1930's but thought it worth showing.  Native American on Horseback hooked with silk stockings,  28 x 38.  
Here is a close up.
A sunflower and geometric measuring l9.5 x 43 hooked early 20th century.
Nice colors in this yarn sewn rug made early 19th century.
Pastel Pinwheels with dimensions of 26 x 52 sold for $475 in 2006. It is now being auctioned again.
Take a look at the sale price on this Hutchinson rug.  It  measures 30 x 49 and sold for $10,200.
Birds and circles applique with dimensions  of 25.5 x 40.  Could also be hooked.
A folk art recumbent dog with dimensions of 42 x 53.
It looks like a close relative to this dog rug below which measures 33.5 x 44.
Oh, and lets do something for the feline lovers.  A bat and cat circa 1900 measures 23 x 70.   Won't be long before Halloween gets here, so this would be an easy hook.
Am getting close to another finished rug but am sure it won't be ready in two days to show in the next blog post.  However I will try.   More rain in the forecast for this evening and again on Saturday.  Sometimes other towns get the rain and those rain clouds don't fly over me.  Am hoping that will be the case for the next two predictions. 

Saturday, July 22, 2023


Not only do I not have any rugs to bind, am also caught up on my rug labels.  Those include 4 previously hooked plus the 2 which will be finished before the end of the year.  I can get 6 labels to a sheet or more if I don't attach a mini photo of the original antique.
For those of you new followers, you can click the link below to see how I've made my labels HERE.

Have drawn the pattern for Cape May rug camp, which is probably a little early but at least it is done and won't be hanging over my head.  And, I've printed out a paper pattern for my next 'plus one'.  But haven't yet decided which pattern will be the main project.                                                       
You're probably wondering if cotton rug binding is the only way I finish my rugs and the answer is 'no'.  It depends on whether or not I want to add another row to the edge.  Sometimes I don't want the border to appear larger by whipping the edge or using wool, I just want the  hooking to show as I made  it.

Happy weekend and happy hooking.


Thursday, July 20, 2023


Sorry to disappoint but I'm not referring to Geometric Garden as there's  still more to hook on that one.  I'm referring to Scalloped Flowers.  So am caught up with binding and before Cape May camp in September will have Geo Garden bound.
I drew it measuring 23 x 37.5.  If I were to hook it again (which I won't) think I'd go for more of a gold color instead of tan.   Soon I'll be drawing my next one and think I know which one I'll do.  However, you know me, I could change my mind before it is enlarged and drawn.

Speaking of Cape May ~  I'm going to sell my 16" Townsend Orbiter rug frame and will take it to Cape May if anyone wishes to purchase it there and save on shipping.  I won't be hooking any future huge rugs and certainly have enough other frames to take care of my needs.  Here are two photos of the 'like new' blue orbiter frame.  I'm asking $600.

I'm arriving first week Sept. 10 thru noon Sept. 15.
Here is a view with the top cover and instructions.
Another storm will arrive in the dark of the morning and last until about 1 p.m. tomorrow.    My lake-back is ever enlarging and the grass/weeds ever growing.  Since the weekend is supposed to be wonderful perhaps the sun will dry the yard enough to be cut.  Well except the lake will  still be there.

Happy hooking.


Tuesday, July 18, 2023


Don't be thrown off by the very tattered rug below as I believe it has a wonderful story to tell.  It was found in an estate in Waltham, MA and  believed to be the handiwork of a WWI nurse who lived there.
The rug was found in this condition and because of the other objects found in her estate is why they believe she was a WWI nurse.  So let us explore the design.  Why is the word "QUIZ" at the top??   What is that date? 
I can make out JAN 6 19??.
In the photo above it appears to be a dog to the left, a hard to decipher date and house, or at least a door to a building of some sort.  Below is the back side of that section with the date which is hard to read.  
Then there is the girl with a jump rope at the bottom and flowers.
So I've been thinking about this rug since seeing it and have a couple thoughts/questions.  Did the woman hook this about her own childhood memories?  If it is true she was a nurse during WWI was it also a 'quiz' for her wounded patients?  Could it be a quiz to test the wounded military on their mental awareness?

Oh so many thoughts running thru my mind when seeing this rug and learning the antique dealer believed it was from a WWI nurse.  Antique  hooked rugs have so many stories in their history which intrigues me.  

As for my rugs?  I have only designed a few rugs; one of my mother looking at a fish bowl (which needs to be tweaked) and 3 of my departed fur babies which you can see on my blog's right side bar.  But mostly I  prefer hooking antique adaptations I admire as each of them gives me pause to wonder about the hooker, her thoughts and capture the beauty she hooked.  

Happy hooking.  Hope all of you are staying cool.  The lake is still here with more rain in the forecast but weatherman says it will bring in less humid and reasonable temps this weekend.  Am looking forward to that for sure.


Sunday, July 16, 2023


It rained all night last night, all day and finally stopped 5 pm today.  Hopefully it stopped!  The lake is back and haven't listened to the weather to find out the total rainfall but it is several inches.  When I do hear the levels I'll edit this post.  No chance this water will be absorbed anytime soon.  Meanwhile it gave me time to hook without guilt and I cut the grass on Friday so I'm good there too.

Here's today's update; I drew this 16.5 x 29.5.
Some of you have asked to see the original antique so here is a photo of that too.  Auction house said it was hooked 19th century and measured 27 x 47.5.  Sure didn't want mine that big as the drawing was daunting enough.
Have you ever awakened at 3 a.m. scratching and you feel a tick on your leg or worse yet, the middle of the back and you've no one to pluck it off??  The leg happened last night and in a fog I put on my glasses and tried to remove the dot of a deer tick with tweezers.  After several tries I finally just dug into my flesh to get the damn thing out.

The back was a few days ago and at least this wasn't just a dot of a deer tick, it was normal size.  But again the middle of the night standing with my back to the wall mirror and holding a mirror trying to grab the sucker and pluck it off.  Eventually went for my flesh and successfully got the tick and some of me surgically removed.

Yes, I spray my shoes and legs when walking or working in the yard and wash my hands when returning inside.  Have no idea why they aren't noticed until they burrow into my flesh and cause itching.

Here is a view of the lake and it extends well into the woods and to my left into the woods.  The ground is like a sponge when I walked to the fence to take photos.
I tried taking a video but my battery died so didn't much but hopefully you can hear the cacophony of happy frogs.  
Back to the geo and happily hooking.


Friday, July 14, 2023


My  first thought was to do another Geometric Garden update but my previous post was about that so I'm falling back on my 'go to' post.   

A rug which looks like antique snowflake was said to be hooked between 1910-20 with measurements of 27 x 33.
Here is a bear chair pad, a design which I don't believe will ever be on Cathy's (Acorn Hollow) frame.
Birds with a 6 point star in the middle.  Again no date and also no size provided.
Boy Scout Camp measures 20 x 36 and was formerly owned by  Penny Marshall.  No age was provided by the auction house.
A geometric of circles measuring 21 x 35 and said to be hooked late 19th or early 20th century.  So simple yet to me it is beautiful.  If you tap on the photo it should enlarge so you can see it has a crochet edge.
Here's a close up of a section.
Here's another geometric of circles rug measuring 26 x 41 and hooked around 1930.  To me it doesn't compare to the beauty of the previous rug.
Here's interesting flower rug with diamond border.  The dimensions are 36 x 48 and said to be hooked in the 1800's.  Wish I could see it up close because the colors, hooking or braiding around the flower arrangement is very different.  Of course it could be a plaid fabric giving it that look.
Flowers and leaves,  22 x 36 hooked early 20th century.
The only information on this rug below is size of 40 x 65.
A central cat with bold hit and miss border with stars in the corner.  Again, no other info.
Check out the background on this horse rug.  Personally, those hooked conforming lines look weird under the horse's head, under the tail and across.  Wonder what the heck the person was thinking?  It measures 19 x 38 and hooked between early to mid 20th century.
That's it for now folks.  Guess I'd better go outside and pick up pinecones in anticipation of cutting grass before it gets too steamy out there.

I don't meditate, rug hooking does it for me.