Fruitcake oddballs and woolly weirdness.

A friend came bearing fruitcake on Saturday for our annual Fruitcake Nosh.  We are the only two people that we know, who love this seasonal delicacy. Well, fruitcake can’t exactly be called delicate, because it’s heavily laden with fruits and nuts. I added brandy to mine. We had tea, talked about a wide variety of things and shared our sweet treat. Two happy oddballs.

I made some good progress on the Waxing Crescent pattern this past week. I didn’t hook every day, because of holiday-related projects and distractions, but the background is hooking up quickly. I’m using the perfect night sky wool that I bought a long time ago from The Wool Studio.  The wool is called After Hours, but I doubt Rebecca has any of it, unless she had it re-milled.  I’m determined to use up my wool, but the bins seem to remain as full as ever.  That’s really not a bad thing, just weird.

The weather has gotten COLD, which isn’t news.  It does mean that I have to plan ahead when I want to spend the day hooking in my studio, because I have to put on the heater in the morning.  I love it there listening to music as I hook away, stopping occasionally to look out the windows at the rural beauty and maybe the neighbors’ guinea fowl foraging for insects. 

There’s a lot of beauty out there and in the quietude of the season.

  Good progress on Waxing Crescent.

Good progress on Waxing Crescent.

Seeing double.

I finally got back to the hooking frame this past week.  I started with the barn owl on the Waxing Crescent pattern I’m hooking for a friend.  For some reason, the face was giving me trouble, causing me to pull out and re-hook areas.  I always download an image of the animal or other subject I’m hooking, so I can study the colors, etc.  I’m not trying to create a photographically perfect image, but rather an interpretation.

As I was fussing with it, a lightbulb went on over my head and I remembered another pattern that I have on linen, which is in the I-need-to-be-hooked queue. That one is Harvest Moon and it also has a barn owl.  Doing them both at the same time will save me from trying to remember how I hooked the first owl.

As always, my noodle bin is providing much of the wool that I’m using. As hard as I try to use up my noodles, they remain the same. Too bad that doesn’t work with money.

Meanwhile, there are Yule gifts that need to be made. They’re fun to make and offer a nice diversion from my usual obsessive rug hooking.  I tend to get lost for hours in my studio and when I look up, the afternoon is already darkening.

There’s a lot of beauty out there and in the variety of creative projects to complete.

  Waxing Crescent owl on the left. Harvest Moon owl on the right.

Waxing Crescent owl on the left. Harvest Moon owl on the right.

Minimalist.

Minimalist = a person who advocates or practices minimalism in art or music.

After a week full of family and Thanksgiving activities, I have finally put all the special dishes away, done many loads of laundry, remade beds, found a few forgotten items that will be mailed to Oregon, and generally put the house back in order.  While doing all of this, I decided to put out a few Yuletide holiday decorations. And I do mean a “few”.

I have definitely embraced the minimalist lifestyle in my holiday decorating. “Less is more” has been my mantra for many years. Two of my favorite winter items are old sleds.  One belonged to our older neighbor, Robert, next to whom we lived in New Jersey when our kids were growing up.  This little sled has to be at least a hundred years old.  The longer one on our farm table is a Flexible Flyer that belonged to a friend of our son. I’m not sure how we ended up with it, but I’m sure it was all above-board!

I’ll add some fresh greens as we get into December and possibly one or two of the little wintery fairy houses I have made over the years. It’s still a bit early for me to fully feel the holiday vibes.

Getting back to the hooking frame is on the agenda for this week. I’m anxious to get hooking on my Waxing Crescent pattern for a friend.

There’s a lot of beauty out there and in the simple things in life.

  The Flexible Flyer sled sits on a runner by Family Heirloom Weavers of Red Lion, PA.

The Flexible Flyer sled sits on a runner by Family Heirloom Weavers of Red Lion, PA.

  Robert’s little sled on the back porch.

Robert’s little sled on the back porch.

  We had freezing rain on Saturday and the tree branches are coated with ice.

We had freezing rain on Saturday and the tree branches are coated with ice.

  Early morning ice and mist.

Early morning ice and mist.

A week of Thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving is a week-long sharing of family time here at Crow’s Foot Farm. Our son, daughter-in-law, and granddaughter, Lucy arrived on Saturday to share in the holiday happenings. There was a bit of melting snow for them to see when they arrived. They don’t get many snowfalls in southern Oregon.

No rug hooking this week as we spend time cooking, baking, doing jigsaw puzzles, running the turkey trot, and relaxing in the rustic countryside of Perry County, PA.

I’m sharing a photograph that our neighbor, Britta Schatz, took four years ago when we had a big beautiful snowstorm at Thanksgiving. I love this photo.

There’s a lot of beauty out there and in the time spent with family during holiday time.

 Thanks to Britta Schatz for this photo taken in 2014. I love the blue snow/purkinje effect.

Thanks to Britta Schatz for this photo taken in 2014. I love the blue snow/purkinje effect.

The owls have it.

Songbirds are colorful and sing pretty songs, but it’s the raucous and taloned ones that I like the best. Owls, raptors, corvids and even vultures are the ones I prefer to hang with.

I’ve designed hooked rugs with owls and crows and they seem popular with others, too.  I recently had a request from a friend to hook her my design, Waxing Crescent, featuring a barn owl, a mouse, and the waxing moon on the night sky – all of my favorite design elements.  Whenever I recreate one of my hooked pieces, I try to make the new one better than the original with more thoughtful use of color and value, for instance.  We shall see how this new one comes out.

October was a busy and fun month filled with witchy and Halloween-y fun and projects.  November brings family and Thanksgiving activities. Our son and his family will be visiting from Oregon and we are so excited to see them!  With that in mind, my time at the hooking frame will be zero.  But then comes December and that is a free and open month leading into the beautiful, dark and quiet months of winter.  I can’t wait!

So, hang in with me as I tend to the needs of hearth and home.  I’ll still blog every Monday - I haven’t missed one yet. How many years has it been?  I’m not sure.

There’s a lot of beauty out there and in the darkening days and comforts of gathering around a warm hearth fire.

  Waxing Moon - the original.

Waxing Moon - the original.

  Little Saw whet and his dinner [pattern not available]

Little Saw whet and his dinner [pattern not available]

  Emma’s Owls - [pattern not available]

Emma’s Owls - [pattern not available]

  Not Quite White. This rug is featured in the new book, Rug Hooking Through the Year ©2018 Ampry Publishing LLC/Rug Hooking

Not Quite White. This rug is featured in the new book, Rug Hooking Through the Year ©2018 Ampry Publishing LLC/Rug Hooking

  Barn Owl With Moon - take 2.

Barn Owl With Moon - take 2.

A book for you, a visit and a pizza for me.

This past week was a fun time with a visit from a friend, who moved to Connecticut a couple of years ago. We did many trips to antique shops, lunches out, lots of laughs, and a bit of wine in the evenings. Don’t ask me to define “a bit”.

During all this, I received many entries from those of you interested in winning the new book, Rug Hooking Through the Year [©2018 Ampry Publishing LLC / Rug Hooking].  Before embarking on her drive home today, Pat drew the name of the book winner out of the dye pot.  The winner is, Chris G., who commented, “What a great book to complete any rug hooker’s library. I would love to have it included in mine. Always looking for great designs and inspiration.”  Congratulations, Chris, I’ll be contacting you for your mailing address and get this brand new book sent your way!

Thank you to everyone who entered the drawing. I appreciate all your comments and wish I could send each of you a book.  The designers included in Rug Hooking Through the Year are ones who will inspire you, so I do hope you will buy a copy for yourself.  I always like to urge rug hookers to join the Rug Hooking Magazine Book Club.  You will get their new books at a reduced price and no shipping costs. It’s definitely worth joining!  Go to the Rug Hooking Magazine website to check out the details.

I also finished a silly little hooked pizza. This is the third pizza I’ve made. What’s up with that?  I’m not sure, but I needed something for the bottom of my wonderful wire basket that holds the wool for whatever project I’m currently working on.

There’s a lot of beauty out there and in sharing a book and a visit with a friend.

  Pizza in a basket just for fun.

Pizza in a basket just for fun.

Rug Hooking Through the Year.

I’m doing a book giveaway this week.  The book, Rug Hooking Through the Year, is the latest publication by Ampry Publishing LLC/Rug Hooking.  Before I launch into my book review, I must disclose that on the cover is my rug, Magpie Cherry Pie. This book also includes my snowy owl rug titled, Not Quite White.   So, you know I’m going to love this book.

Rug Hooking Through the Year contains 24 favorite projects, which are arranged around the theme of the four seasons.  Fifteen designers are featured with projects for every level of rug hooking experience.  Each designer has included lots of helpful tips about how the rug was designed, wool dyeing and color choice decisions, and there is a line drawing of each design, which can be enlarged and used for one-time personal use.

If you’re looking for ideas for rugs to hook for every season, this book is for you!

There’s a lot of beauty out there and in a new book about hooked rug designers.

BOOK GIVEAWAY:  I am excited to have a give-away copy of Rug Hooking Through the Year [©2018 Ampry Publishing LLC and presented by Rug Hooking].  To get your name in the drawing, please leave a comment on this blog post on my website.  [Below this blog post is the teeny tiny word “comment/s”. Click on that to open a space to type your comment.] Be sure to sign-in to leave your comment, so I will have your email address to contact you if you win.  [Your email address will not be used for any other purpose].  The drawing will be held on Sunday, November 4th at Noon [EST].  I will announce the lucky winner in my blog on Monday, November 5th.

Good luck!

  Be sure to leave a comment below to get your name into the dye pot. You might be the winner!

Be sure to leave a comment below to get your name into the dye pot. You might be the winner!

  Magpie Cherry Pie hangs in my laundry room.

Magpie Cherry Pie hangs in my laundry room.

Seasonal rugs.

October is my favorite and busiest month of the year. I haven’t spent time at the hooking frame for a couple of weeks, so today I’m featuring my fall and Halloween rug patterns, which are available on the Shop page of my website, if you’re interested. 

It has finally cooled off!  We had a freeze last Thursday night and the back lawn was like a field of diamonds when I let the dogs out early Friday morning. The air was so crisp and clear that I took many deep breaths, which nourished my soul.  I love autumn!

Coming up on Saturday will be the Brandywine Hook-In in Lancaster, PA.  They always put on a spectacular day of hooking, shopping, and camaraderie.  I have a list of spot dyed wools to buy for two of my future rugs and I’m also buying wool for a friend.  I love spending someone else’s money. 

There’s a lot of beauty out there and in the crisp clear days and nights of autumn.

  The Recipe 24” x 18”

The Recipe 24” x 18”

  Stack o’ Jacks 36” x 18”

Stack o’ Jacks 36” x 18”

  Waxing Crescent 24” x 18”

Waxing Crescent 24” x 18”

  La Hora Del Te 26” x 21”

La Hora Del Te 26” x 21”

  Fall Fields 22” x 19”

Fall Fields 22” x 19”

  Barn Owl with Moon 24” x 36”

Barn Owl with Moon 24” x 36”

  Harvest Moon pattern 22”x 40”

Harvest Moon pattern 22”x 40”

Cross-training.

On a recent Saturday, Humble Stitch, a brand new local yarn and fiber craft store, hosted a Sit and Stitch.  I contacted my fellow First Monday Crafters and some of us showed up to sit, knit, and enjoy the beautiful ambience of this local shop.  Ambience in this case can be read as “irresistible shopping opportunity”.

I had previously bought a beautiful big ball of Noro yarn from Humble Stitch and as I sat and chatted with the other knitters, I worked on a cowl. I hope the temps will go down at some point, so I can wear it.  I even gave in to the urge and bought another similar ball of Noro in a different color wave to make another cowl. 

My maternal grandmother taught me to knit when I was eight years old.  That was very many years ago.  Although I’ve been knitting for decades, I am not an expert knitter.  I don’t want to knit intricate patterns with lots of color changes. I find the act of knitting to be relaxing and meditative and I like to keep it low key.

This past week I drew up a design for the next installment in my Mother Earth Speaks series of hooked pieces.  I need to live with it for a while before committing it to linen, wool, and hook.  This series explores both natural and man-made ecological disasters.  This next one will be a natural near-disaster to those living on the coast of Greenland.  That’s all I’ll say on it for now.

There’s a lot of beauty out there and in the communal sharing of fiber art.

 Noro  yarn on the needles.

Noro yarn on the needles.

I just can't stop!

I finished hooking my Barn Owl with Moon2 rug this past week.  I was going to wait to bind it at the Brandywine Hook-In later this month, but I. Could. Not. Wait.  I actually love finishing rugs, so the desire to hold off was overwhelmed by the desire to bind and whip the edge.  I guess I’ll have to find something else to hook at the hook-in.

There’s a spot on my kitchen floor that has been waiting for this rug, so that, coupled with the fact that I will be hosting my Breakfast Club ladies in a couple of weeks, really gave me an irresistible urge to get this rug done and down.

What’s next?  I will be hooking my new design, Harvest Moon, in the near future, but I need something else in the meantime.  Maybe another piece for my Mother Earth Speaks series?  I do have a few ideas bubbling around in my head for that.  I’ll see what grabs me.

Autumn is here at Crow's Foot Farm, but the temps are still a bit too mild.  I hope your autumn is beautiful where you are.

There’s a lot of beauty out there and in having a new rug for my kitchen floor.

  Barn Owl with Moon2 in situ.

Barn Owl with Moon2 in situ.

  I whipped the edge with two strands of wool, one charcoal grey and one burgundy.

I whipped the edge with two strands of wool, one charcoal grey and one burgundy.

 

Pumpkin palette.

My Barn Owl with Moon rug is almost finished.  An autumnal design gets me excited and my hook flying.  This rug, which is 24” x 36”, is hooked mostly in #8.5 cut wool strips for the pumpkin and background, and #8 and #7 for the other design elements.

Orange is one of my favorite colors.  It’s my Power Color and signifies Creative Energy to me.  I used about ten different orange and orange-related wools for this pumpkin.  I also love to add pops of magenta in my orange pumpkins. Using an unexpected color in design elements adds excitement and moves the viewer’s eyes around the design.

Although I’ll be finished with hooking this rug by next week, I will hold off on the whipping of the edges until the Brandywine Hook-In in October.  Binding a rug at a hook-in can be done without lugging a frame, tub of wool, etc. I spend most of my time at a hook-in shopping, chatting, and looking at an array of rugs.  I confess that little actual hooking is done by me.

My next project will be my newest design called, Harvest Moon.  I’ll be hooking it for a friend, who is an artist who loves color.  I want to do some wool shopping at the Brandywine Hook-In for this new rug. 

There’s a lot of beauty out there and in the rich colors of an autumnal rug.

  Barn Owl with Moon 24”x 36”

Barn Owl with Moon 24”x 36”

  A close up of the many pumpkin colors used.

A close up of the many pumpkin colors used.

  The orange wools used.

The orange wools used.

  My next pumpkin pattern, Harvest Moon, 22” x 40”

My next pumpkin pattern, Harvest Moon, 22” x 40”

Progress and pumpkins.

I started hooking my Barn Owl with Moon-take 2 rug at Fort Hunter Day in Harrisburg PA a week ago. Good progress has been made thanks to using wide #8.5 cut wool strips for the background. The design elements are being hooked in #8 cut.  A border might be added, but I will wait to see how it looks when I finish what is drawn on the linen.

This past week, a friend asked me to design a pattern for her with pumpkins, a full moon, an owl, and vines and leaves - pretty much what I’m hooking now, but in a different size and no mice.  I worked up a design for her, which I’ve titled, Harvest Moon.  I’ll be hooking the same rug, too, so it’ll be fun to see how we each interpret it.  Although the pattern is not yet listed on the Shop page of my website, it is available for purchase by contacting me through the Contact page.

I don’t want to jinx anything, but the weather seems more autumnal recently. I am ready for cool days, pumpkins, fall leaves, apple cider, and earlier dark nights. Oh, and Halloween!

There’s a lot of beauty out there and in hooking fall rug patterns.

  Barn Owl with Moon- take2 in progress.

Barn Owl with Moon- take2 in progress.

Barn Owl with Moon - take 2.

Those of us who hook rugs find it amusing when someone asks if we actually put our rugs on the FLOOR and WALK on them!  Yes, we do.  Wool hooked onto a sturdy foundation can withstand many years of foot traffic. 

The second rug I ever designed and hooked depicted a barn owl sitting on a pumpkin with a large full moon low in the night sky. That rug had been on the floor in front of the kitchen sink for eleven years. Although the loops were somewhat flattened and it had a few stains, it was still in amazing shape.

Then it happened.

One of our dogs [I’m not naming names] had an accident on it. I picked up the rug, put it in a garbage bag, and took it out to the trash. I wasn’t upset with the dog at all. Stuff happens.

Deciding to re-hook that rug, I searched for the original pattern, but was unable to find it. Back to the drawing board I went and even added a couple of mice to the new design. I can’t wait to start hooking. I bought some beautiful dark, multi-colored, spot-dyed herringbone wool when I was at Sauder Village.  I’ll use it for the background. This new rug will be darker overall than the original.

I hope to have some good progress to show you next week. In the meantime, get your rugs out of the closet, lay them on the floor, and walk on them!

There’s a lot of beauty out there and in the redesigning of an old rug.

  Barn Owl with Moon 2. Stay tuned.

Barn Owl with Moon 2. Stay tuned.

Oil and Water, the big finish.

The second hooked piece in my Mother Earth Speaks series is finished. This one titled, Oil and Water, represents the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010, which was a truly devastating man-made ecological disaster.

After looking at many photos showing the massive oil spill on the water in the Gulf, I chose one for my model as I designed and color planned my piece. I spent a long time online trying to find the photographer [I had her name], but was unable to find where I could contact her. Because of that, I’m not posting her photograph.

This piece is 22” x 28” and is hooked mostly with a #8.5 cut of wool cloth on linen foundation. I also used many #8 cut noodles from my always-full noodle bin.  I also dug out a beautiful skein of sari silk in a variety of colors and added that here and there to add a bit of shine and a “bubble” effect.

I wanted an irregular shape for the border to add to the oil effect. I did my favorite binding technique with the excess linen folded up and basted around cotton cord and then whipped with some exquisite dyed yarn from Deanne Fitzpatrick.  I bought that skein of yarn when I went to a weekend workshop at Deanne’s studio about five years ago. I had never used it until now when it was the perfect yarn for this piece. As I’ve said before, having a good stash is worth its weight in gold.

My next project, after making a large custom pattern for a customer, will be to remake a rug from my pattern titled, Barn Owl with Moon. More on that next time.

There’s a lot of beauty out there and in a stash containing some real treasures.

  Oil and Water, 22" x 28” wool cloth and sari silk on linen foundation. Designed and hooked by © Karen Larsen, Crow's Foot Farm Designs, LLC.

Oil and Water, 22" x 28” wool cloth and sari silk on linen foundation. Designed and hooked by © Karen Larsen, Crow's Foot Farm Designs, LLC.

  Finishing the irregular edge on Oil and Water.

Finishing the irregular edge on Oil and Water.

A book winner and projects completed.

I expected a great response to the book giveaway of Celebration of Hand-Hooked Rugs 28 [© 2018 Ampry Publishing LLC / Rug Hooking] and I wasn’t disappointed.

Thank you all for your comments and participation.  Congratulations to the lucky winner, Shannon, who said, “I would love to have such a great inspiration in my little hooking corner!" Shannon, I'll be contacting you for your mailing address. This book is just chock-full of eye candy!

My first priority after coming home from Sauder Village was to finish up the projects from the two workshops I took there.  One was an evening class with Nancy Z. Parcels, in which I learned how to make a brooch using wool quillies, buttons, and beads. It was a lot of fun and I now want to make more of these as gifts. My first attempt isn’t perfect, but you know what “they” say about practice…..

I also took a two-day workshop with Meryl Cook titled Hook a Healing Mat. In this class we worked with chakra colors and their meanings and how we can work with them. Some of us were working through personal issues and we vowed “what went on in class, stayed in class”. 

We each received Meryl’s 16” heart pattern drawn on linen as a starting point, but we were encouraged to make changes as we wanted. I made the center of mine a spiral that starts with the seventh chakra [the lavender/crown chakra] in the center and then spirals out to the first chakra [the red/root chakra]. We all wrote significant words around the outer edges of the linen that pertained to our issue. Since I decided to make my mat into a pillow, I embroidered the word “Own” on the back. That’s all I’ll say about my personal mat journey!

As always, being at Sauder Village Rug Hooking Week is a full-immersion experience for me and it does take me a while to be fully back at home, both mentally, physically and emotionally. I think I’m home now.

There’s a lot of beauty out there and in the many facets of rug hooking experiences.

  My completed project made into a pillow and Meryl Cook's books as inspiration.

My completed project made into a pillow and Meryl Cook's books as inspiration.

  The back of my pillow with my key word in embroidery.

The back of my pillow with my key word in embroidery.

  I braided colorful Noro yarn to cover the pillow edges.

I braided colorful Noro yarn to cover the pillow edges.

  My quillie, button and bead pin made in Nancy Z. Parcels' workshop.

My quillie, button and bead pin made in Nancy Z. Parcels' workshop.

Celebration book giveaway.

As I get organized and back to hooking in my studio, I decided to do a book giveaway. I know you all love these as much as I do!

The book is Celebration of Hand-Hooked Rugs 28 [© 2018 Ampry Publishing LLC and presented by Rug Hooking Magazine]. This is the annual publication of the best rugs entered and chosen to be in Celebration. The variety of rugs is amazing and the talent is breath-taking.

Many of these rugs were on display at Sauder Village Rug Hooking Week. I was there as a volunteer for Rug Hooking Magazine, so I had the fun of hanging the Celebration display. Up close and personal was a great place to be!

Not all rugs chosen as finalists were at Sauder Village, so this book is filled with even more beautiful rugs. It’s always the annual best of the best and a great book to have as inspiration for rug hookers everywhere.

There’s a lot of beauty out there and in a collection of beautiful hooked rugs.

BOOK GIVEAWAY:  I am excited to have a give-away copy of Celebration of Hand-Hooked Rugs 28 [© 2018 Ampry Publishing LLC and presented by Rug Hooking].  To get your name in the drawing, please leave a comment on this blog post on my website.  [Below this blog post is the teeny tiny word “comment/s”. Click on that to open a space to type your comment.] Be sure to sign in to leave your comment, so I will have your email address to contact you if you win.  [Your email address will not be used for any other purpose].  The drawing will be held on Sunday, September 2, 2018 at Noon [EDT].  I will announce the lucky winner in my blog on Monday, September 3, 2018.  Good luck!

  Leave a comment below to get your name in the dye pot!

Leave a comment below to get your name in the dye pot!

Home again.

It was a very busy, exhausting, and FUN time at Sauder Village Rug Hooking Week. 

This is the biggest rug hooking experience that I look forward to each year.  Thanks to Kathy Wright for her amazing organizational skills and to Deb Smith for allowing me to be an official Rug Hooking Magazine volunteer [along with Nancy Parcels].  We do have fun!

I’ll need a few days to decompress and digest all of the sights, rug hooking knowledge, new and old friends, etc. With that in mind this post is a short one.  I’ll just share a photo of the piece I had in the rug show. It is one I did as part of Lisanne Miller’s group project called, Landscape of Our Lives. My piece is titled, Shamanic Directions.

There’s a lot of beauty out there and in a week crammed with all things rug hooking!

  Shamanic Directions, 24" diameter, wool cloth strips on linen foundation with embroidered elements on each quadrant, mounted on foam core backing.

Shamanic Directions, 24" diameter, wool cloth strips on linen foundation with embroidered elements on each quadrant, mounted on foam core backing.

On the road to Sauder Village.

Off I go today with Deb Smith for the always-exciting Rug Hooking Week at Sauder Village in Archbold, Ohio.  The van is loaded with everything needed for the Rug Hooking Magazine booth, plus our bags, rugs, frames, wool - well, you get the idea.

During this week, I’ll try to post some photos from Sauder Village on my Crow’s Foot Farm Designs LLC Facebook page.  I’ll be taking a two-day workshop with Meryl Cook, called Hook a Healing Mat. And I’m excited to take Nancy Parcels’ evening class making a brooch.  Nancy is very talented making wearable art, so that will be fun!

I’m looking forward to seeing the Maud Lewis exhibit of rug adaptations of her painting AND some of her original art, as well.

Before hitting the road, a group of Magdalena Rug Hookers hung our rug show titled, Modern Magdalena, at the Landis House in Newport PA.  Our group did angel rugs and there are a variety of interpretations on that theme plus other rugs with different subject matter.

The opening reception was this past Friday and we had a nice turnout of community members. For those of you who live locally, the hours of the Landis House are Wednesday and Friday 1pm – 5pm and also the first Saturday of the month 1pm – 4pm.  The show will be up through November 3rd.

There’s a lot of beauty out there and in this week of rug hooking fun.

  Hooker bling.

Hooker bling.

Oil spreading.

My Oil and Water piece is progressing in an organic way.  I don’t think I will know what it will look like until it is completely finished.  The colors and patterns are forming after looking at a number of photos of this man-made disaster in the Gulf of Mexico.

As always, I have delved into my worm bin and have been able to use many precut wool strips. My goal isn’t to make a pretty picture. That would be impossible and a disservice to such a monumental environmental disaster. I’m even using a piece of primitive linen that had another design on the opposite side and some of the hooking done.  Reduce, Reuse, Recycle!

Things are pretty busy around here these days.  Tomorrow a group of Magdalena Rug Hookers and I will be hanging our rug show at the Landis House in Newport, PA. The show, titled Modern Magdalena,  opens on Friday, August 10th and runs through the beginning of November.  The main theme of the exhibit is angels.  We have had fun interpreting the many kinds of angels all around us.

And then I leave for Rug Hooking Week at Sauder Village next Monday.  I can’t wait to get there and rub elbows with so many excited and talented hookers.  Nancy Parcels and I will be volunteering to help out at the Rug Hooking Magazine booth with Deb Smith, so do stop and say hello if you’re there.

There’s a lot of beauty out there and in the busy times of rug hooking activities.

  Oil and Water in progress. 

Oil and Water in progress. 

Oil and Water.

There are natural disasters such as the Hawaiian volcano eruption and lava flow that I depicted in my recent piece, Pele Speaks, and then there are man-made disasters. 

My new piece for the Mother Earth Speaks series is titled, Oil and Water, and represents the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

On April 20, 2010 an explosion caused the sinking of the Deepwater Horizon oil-rig in the Gulf of Mexico, killing eleven people.  The BP pipe on the ocean floor gushed oil and gas for 87 days and released an estimated 3.19 million barrels of oil causing untold devastation on that region.

Some of the oil floated to the surface of the ocean, forming oil slicks, which spread by being pushed by winds. Some oil hovered, suspended, in the mid-water after rising from the wellhead. This oil mixed with dispersant, which, instead of breaking up the oil so it could wash away, allowed the oil to mix with seawater and stay suspended below the surface. About twenty percent of the oil sank to the ocean floor, damaging deep-sea corals and other ecosystems.

Of course many animals were impacted by this oil spill; fish, pelicans, turtles, dolphins, seabirds, to name just some.  I’m sure you remember the photos of animals covered with oil.  It had, and continues to have, a serious environmental impact in that area.

The overwhelming devastation of this man-made disaster made it difficult to design a hooked piece.  There was too much to depict, so I chose to hook a surface oil spill.  This piece will need added fibers after the hooking is finished.  I hope you will follow along.

There’s a lot of beauty out there, which needs to be protected.

  Having a good stash is crucial when planning a new piece. 

Having a good stash is crucial when planning a new piece.