International Rug Hooking Day

The Sunshine Rug Hookers recently celebrated International Rug Hooking Day with a hook in, coffee and goodies, and a special show and tell and story time.

There were a number of Christmas themed pieces…neat Santa hangings….dscn0991dscn1004…Kathleen has done a  winter theme….(very appropriate at the moment….it’s snowing heavily)dscn1013…a beautiful fine shaded wreath….dscn1003Ann showed the various ornaments she has on her mantle….special to her since they were made by a variety of friends.dscn1020Margaret is making a Christmas stocking for her Grandson’s first Christmas.dscn1001Others showed work in progress  as well….dscn0989Edie is working on a stained glass piece from Heartland Studios.dscn1025Lynda is hooking a stained glass pattern from Ragg Tyme Studio.dscn1000This is Diane’s current project.

dscn1022Helen designed her pattern from a card…dscn1015….and this is a view of the lake from Kathy’s mom’s yard.

Everyone recounted a favourite hooking moment, piece, story or anecdote. Many of  these rugs have special significance to the hooker…dscn0990….such as Jean’s “grandchildren rug” dscn0997Pat’s Canadian themed pillow….and chair seat….dscn0998dscn1007Jean showed her beautiful ‘tiger’ bag, and recounted the difficulties she had getting the straps.dscn1010Teresa showed her delightful “Bodacious Babe” (I’m not sure that that is exactly her name….but it’s at least close). Lots of alternate fibres in this.

Lambs are always a popular theme…..dscn1023dscn0994dscn0996This was hooked by Mary and was from a photo of her Grandson just before he decided to jump in the water fully clothed.dscn1002Liz hooks using yarn (some of which she spins herself), and loves to create free form patterns which she designs as she goes along. She says she loves hooking because she has learned to hook what makes her happy regardless of what others may say are the ‘rules’. (wise lady)….and she certainly looks happy.dscn0999This rug is special to Diane since it was retrieved from a friend’s china cabinet where it had lain untouched for years and years. She really enjoyed finishing it and giving it a life after its long years of neglect.

Cheri showed her series if “Sun” rugs. Her creativity and amazing use of colour always impress me, and I’d never before seen any of these rugs. dscn1026dscn1028dscn1027dscn1029The entire morning was delightful, and a fitting tribute to Traditional Rug Hooking and the joy it brings to those of us who love pulling those loops.

Thanks for stopping by.

Sunshine Hookers at Work

It’s s great to be hooking again each week with the Sunshine Rug Hookers……. to see what everyone is doing…..how rugs have progressed, and what new projects are underway.DSCF7683

Fiona has finished more of her wonderful ‘Green River’…showing her and her husband on the dock of their home. DSCF7684I was particularly impressed with the forest at the top and her use of purples and turquoises for the evergreen trees…..so effective.  What a keepsake this will be.DSCF7685

Joanne was doing a remake on this delightful piece. It was a pillow, which she was de-constructing to become a flat hooked mat or wall hanging. The three circles stand for love, marriage and motherhood. (if I remember correctly). DSCF7688

Ann was completely sold out of her stars at the Quilt and Rug Fair, with requests for more, so she was working away on a new batch. She is using an orangy-yellow soft  ribbon”y” stuff to create that sparkly effect. (I’m sure there is a proper name for it)

Karen and Mary are finishing up their pieces from the fine shading course they took with Linda Wilson in the spring.

DSCF7686This is Karen’s. Her dramatic background colour sets off those flowers so well.DSCF7702

Mary is also using a beautiful deep blue background.

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Chris and Brenda attended a class during the summer with Bea Grant. It was on combining penny rugs, appliqué, and hooking. Chris is applying her ‘show binding’ to her appliquéd crow.  Brenda promises she will let me photograph hers when it is done. (going to hold you to it Brenda)

Gail and Cheri have just returned from their yearly hiking trip in New England.

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With no hooking project underway, last night Cheri quickly drew up a Christmas banner, and got it started this morning.

Gail brought along a number of t-shirts she bought at a sale they stumbled on during their trip, and she was getting them ready to use as the background for a new “wonky” Christmas tree piece.DSCF7700

Judith is sewing the binding of this lovely geometric. DSCF7704

The background is Harris tweed recycled from a skirt she found , gave away, and eventually was given back. Quite a background to that background!

Gail L. is starting this lovely bell pull.

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I always love Elizabethan designs.

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Marion is making a hot pad. The colours and designs are reflective of a painting in the dining room of the friend that she’s making it for.DSCF7706

Isabelle is nearly finished this welcome mat. Love the chain border, and the lettering.

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The larger cat is to receive a new grey nose that will show up against the background. Right now that kitty can’t smell the flowers.

Jeanne is completing this Rittermere pattern that she bought on a sale table at R.U.G. Some of the flowers had been completed, and the wool was included.

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Jeanne had no idea how old the piece was, but she said the burlap was hard and rather brittle. She had an ingenious way of coping with that. She sprayed the whole thing gently with cooking oil and massaged it into the burlap. It is now soft and flexible. How smart is that.

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Erma’s beautiful oak leaves remind us that tomorrow is the first day of Fall.

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Liz said she completed this rug a year or so ago, although I don’t remember seeing it before. She is also an accomplished spinner and uses her own yarn to great effect in her hooking.

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…..using a combination of wool strips, purchased yarn, and her own wonderful colours. (she spun the bronze/gold wool shown here). She uses a lot of mohair which she feels gives her wool extra vitality.

Diane is completing Hilda Hayes’ last rug.

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Hilda’s granddaughter drew the picture  and Hilda was in the midst of hooking it for her new great granddaughter when she became too ill to complete it. What a special keepsake it will be and what a lovely gesture by Diane to complete it.

I had every intention of taking pictures  at the Quilt, Rug and Craft Fair last weekend, but once again, I forgot to take my camera. I am still hopeful of receiving photos taken by others, and if I do, I’ll be sure to share them.

Thanks for stopping by.

Sunshine Progress

The Sunshine Rug Hookers meet each Tuesday morning from September until the end of June, so we are wrapping up another successful year, with only two more weeks to hook and visit together until our summer break.

We meet at Rotary Place, our local community centre, in a spacious meeting room with windows on each side overlooking two ice rinks.

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This week I finally remembered to take my camera (with fresh batteries) to catch up on what people were currently working on.

Several members had taken a “shading” course earlier in the year with our talented Linda Wilson and were working on projects started with her.

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Gail brought in a unique project to show us. Earlier in the spring, we had all been rather taken aback to watch her hooking a totally plan black textured piece in even rows. This from someone who is wildly creative and loves vibrant strong colours. I know my reaction was…”Gail….what on earth are you hooking!!!!”

Here’s the story……She has a lovely collection of pins and broaches, and decided that rather than have them sitting in a drawer, they should be displayed and enjoyed in her home. Soooooo….here’s what she made. DSCF7568

A wonderful wall hanging to be enjoyed and have the selection readily at hand for wearing.

I took a peek at the back to see how she had managed to create a firm piece that would hold the weight of the pins and secure them without sagging….DSCF7567

….she mounted the hooking on (I can’t think of the proper name) that firm board that is used for mounting photos, then stretched  the hooking using strong fibre (I think she used the linen backing fibres).  Her sister Cheri has advised her to add two more rows of the corked edging around the outside to create a larger border, so that is in progress and you can see the loop of it at the top. Didn’t I say she is creative?

Two of our Sunshine Hookers are kept busy producing items that are constantly in demand. Ann Hallett regularly has large orders for her stars, and so she can frequently be seen surrounded by her lovely celestial creations.DSCF7585

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Cheri Hempseed on the other hand is known far and wide for her delightful portrait necklaces, which promptly sell out whenever she puts them up for sale.

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I admire them so much, particularly the patience and detail needed to create these small beauties (they are about 2″ x 3″).DSCF7493Her’s a photo of Linda Wilson wearing hers.

The rest of us were working on a wide variety of projects. Here’s a peek….DSCF7579

Brenda is starting a Deanne Fitzpatrick pattern I’ve not seen before.

DSCF7576Lynda is working on her delightful chipmunk, begun at a workshop with Wendie Scott Davis.

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Margaret is making maple leaf coasters, which may end up on a sales table if her husband doesn’t see them first.

DSCF7582Helen purchased this ball of wool from “Wool Gathering” at RUG, and is enjoying the patterns it is creating in this 12″  square pad.

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Jeanne is hooking a log cabin piece, and wishing she had chosen to do it in a 3 or 4 cut simply because then her choice of worms would be endless.

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Edie is thinking of fall already…

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Marion is doing crewel work for a change of pace.

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…and on a sadder note, Jean is completing Barbara Wilson’s unfinished hooking. Barbara died recently , and we will miss her a great deal. We celebrate with her family, her long and wonderful life filled with the joy of a loving family and extensive world travels.

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…and finally here’s Gail’s rendition of Sheila Klugesheid’s pattern.  I had such a hard time getting her to hold it low enough so we could see her smiling face.

Our final get together this year will be at Couchiching Beach Park, for a pot luck lunch and a day of hooking. I’ll be sure to take my camera that day to record the fun.

Thanks for stopping by.

March Sunshine Hooking Part 2

We had several guests with us at the last Sunshine get together, and enjoyed seeing their work. I’m not good at remembering names, so please excuse the errors and omissions.DSCF7377Janice is doing Whirligig, a pattern by Suzanne Hill.

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Elizabeth is enjoying her introduction to rug hookingDSCF7390

This is a one end of a very large rug designed by Martina Lazar. The colours just pop against that light background.

The fishes below will be hung as wall plaques.

DSCF7400I was very interested in how they were being finished. I have always avoided hooking convoluted shapes, because I had no idea how one would bind the edges.DSCF7401This hooker (I apologize for not knowing her name) has come up with a wonderful method which not only provides a great finish, but sets off the vibrant colours with the black edging. She is using material like a bias tape which surrounds the raw edges and hides them completely when sewn in place on both sides.DSCF7402I’m surely going to remember this method, and if I ever get the nerve to attempt such a moving edge, I’ll give it a try.

Anne was hooking stars.DSCF7396….and Mary Ann is building a funky house….DSCF7378

Our knitter/hookers were also hard at work. I drool when I look at their wool.DSCF7398

Those colours are such favourites of mine, and I so admire the picot edge on Kathy’s work. Who would want to cover up the beautiful detail in Theresa’a socks by hiding them in shoes???DSCF7399

If and when I get back to my own knitting, I’m going to try knitting socks from the toe up.

Gail….I know for sure I took a photo of your knitting, but my camera gremlin must have been hungry and swallowed it….because it is nowhere to be found!!

I’ve been enjoying hooking Hilda’s English Sunset. I’m only sorry it is so small, and I’ll soon have it finished.DSCF7410

 

Happy hooking. Thanks for stopping by.

 

Hooking With Friends

I can’t think of a better way to spend a winter’s day in January than curled up in a cozy chair by a fireplace, surrounded by friends, and hooking, visiting and eating home made soup for lunch. That’s just what I did yesterday at Helen’s . We were surrounded by inspiring hooked pieces on her walls.DSCF7201

….this hooked by Deanne FitzpatrickDSCF7202…and this wonderful tryptic also by her…DSCF7203….these finer hooked pictures…..

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and delightful small pieces scattered about the room.

Ann was working on her famous stars…DSCF7214

DSCF7199….which sell faster than she can make them.

Cynthia is creating a piece inspired by the work of contemporary Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama and her illustrations of Alice in Wonderland.

http://www.brainpickings.org/2012/04/18/yayoi-kusama-alice-in-wonderland/

Cynthia’s creativity, use of varied materials, and free form hooking, have me holding my breath to watch this unfold.DSCF7210

The beautiful fuchsia is a sari silk and fairly glows in real life.DSCF7211

You can see the wide variety of colours in the “white” background already.

Jeanne was sporting the necklace she made at Jennifer Mauuel’s workshop.DSCF7196 DSCF7197

….while she has nearly completed the background of her  “Four Seasons “.DSCF7195

Helen is hooking a piece inspired by by a “Happy Winter Solstice” card produced by the Syracuse Cultural Workers.DSCF7209

….it  depicts night and day above and below the moon.

I was working on my Zentangle sampler.DSCF7217

….while Mary was corking ….DSCF7198

….with some beautiful coloursDSCF7207

and Kathy was knitting a shawlDSCF7194…..while wearing a poncho she made…DSCF7216

….decorated with a beautiful hand made broach…DSCF7215

…and Wendy popped in later with her knittingDSCF7212

….what  talented friends I have……….what an enjoyable day.

 

 

Medonte Hooking

No, Medonte is not an unusual new hooking style. In the winter the area is home to numerous downhill ski resorts, and in the summer it’s a wonderful place to hold a summer get together for the Sunshine and Huronia Hooking groups. (It’s actually a township between Orillia and Barrie in central Ontario) Many thanks to Linda for organizing and hosting this hook in / dyeing / plowing match collection / day.DSCF6729

On this perfect summer day, some hooked outdoors, DSCF6752 ….and some worked inside.DSCF6725

…but everyone….like Mary Lou and Ann  enjoyed visiting and catching up on the latest news.

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Linda helped introduce dyeing to a number of hookers…

and then they produced some dyed wool of their own.

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Charlene was thrilled with her results.

New hookers had the advantage of many skilled people to ask for advice.

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Here Gail was being consulted on a new hooker’s first rug.

While we all had a wonderful day, the real reason for this gathering was to collect and tag items to be sold or displayed at the upcoming International Plowing Match. It is expected that there will be about 20,000 visitors each day of the weeklong event so many have put in an extra effort to have plenty of items for the sales tables.

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Linda is an “organizer par excellence” and had a separate room set up and all the tags prepared for the job. Liz is putting the tags on her work…

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Cheri and Cynthia are doing the same. (Love how they are both peering over the top of their reading glasses.)

Many display items were brought (here’s a few)

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Cecelia’s amazing lion (only her second hooked piece)

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Ann’s pig….DSCF6747

Cathy’s maritime village… and for me the biggest surprise of the day…Isabel’s rug celebrating the plowing match…..not quite finished…but will be in time for the event. I hadn’t seen it before, and it took my breath away.

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She designed this herself.

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…the detail is amazing…DSCF6722

….and the team of horses are so realistic, they look like they could plow that furrow right off the edge of the rug!!!

More to follow in the next post.   Thanks for stopping by.

Hooking a Vimy Ridge Memorial

2014 marks 100 years since the beginning of WWI and there will undoubtedly be many events commemorating this terrible war in the next few years. In particular, Canadians will be marking the battle of Vimy Ridge (fought in 1917) for many consider it the beginning of Canada’s true nationhood.

Wikipedia has a brief description: “The Battle of Vimy Ridge was the first occasion whereupon all four divisions of the Canadian Expeditionary Force participated in a battle as a cohesive formation, and thus became a Canadian nationalistic symbol of achievement and sacrifice. France ceded to Canada perpetual use of a portion of land on Vimy Ridge under the understanding that the Canadians use the land to establish a battlefield park and memorial. Wartime tunnels, trenches, craters and unexploded munitions still honeycomb the grounds of the site, which remains largely closed off for reasons of public safety. Along with preserved trench lines, there are a number of other memorials and cemeteries contained within the site.” pic_wonder_vimy_lg

The two towers represent Canada and France, united forever in friendship.  125px-Canadian_National_Vimy_Memorial_-_Mother_Canada

One of the statues is called Mother Canada, or Canada Bereft and represents the nation of Canada mourning her dead. (3,600 Canadian soldiers died at Vimy Ridge)

You might well ask…What has this to do with rug hooking? Let me back up and tell you what happened. I was taking photos of people’s work at our meeting on Tuesday, and came to Ann Hallett, who had two piles of wool in front of her she had obviously been cutting by hand. What are you working on Ann I asked? She proceeded to pull out her “just started” piece and ended up speaking about it to the whole amazed group.DSCF6312

I’m hooking a tribute to Vimy Ridge she told us. My grandfather was killed there you know!

…and what a poignant story…..

Her grandfather had written a letter to his wife shortly before the battle, and tucked it in his pocket. The letter was found on his body, and sent to his wife, who received it two weeks after learning of his death.

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As Ann read the letter, there was hardly a dry eye in the room.

…and as if that weren’t significant enough, she is hooking the whole piece using ” used stump socks” from the Canadian army. (woolen socks used to cover and protect the  ‘stumps ‘ of amputated limbs) They are 100% wool in order to absorb any moisture from the stump, and to keep it warm.

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They come in various sizes and she dyes them as needed. then hand cuts them for hooking. (cross ways as you do when hooking nylons)

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This is the template she used for the two towers, depicting Canada and France.

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…and she drew Canada Bereft on a mylar sheet for transfer to the backing…

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She has just recently learned that she is actually holding lilies in her right hand that is hanging down, so she’ll adjust the pattern to include them.

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When completed, this wonderful tribute will hang in Saint James Cathedral in Toronto. A moving tribute to such an important part of Canadian history, created by a dedicated and talented Canadian fiber artist.

I’ll keep you updated on its progress.