It seems that I’ve been working on the Chicken Dreams rug for a long time. The addition of the checkerboard border made it a larger rug than I usually do, but I’ve enjoyed seeing it come to life. All that’s left to do is to steam block it and bind the edges. I love the finishing process, because it means the project is finished!
When I designed this piece I decided to depict my three matriarch hens Henrietta, Winifred and Temperance, all eight years old. Since then my favorite chicken, Henrietta, has died, so that makes this rug even more special to me. I have feathers from all three hens and I might use one or more on each hen when I hang the rug on the wall.
I started the rug by hooking the red and white checked border. The red I used is a deeper red than on the checked border of the feed sack. I didn’t want to bring the red on the sack out to the edges of the rug. Making the reds dissimilar helps to keep the design contained within the border.
I also decided to make the background fairly plain so it wouldn’t be distracting. I dyed the green wool for the grass area. It had to be a strong color to hold up against the border. The sky wool was dyed in five shades of blue. One wool was an over-dyed light blue wool with a subtle windowpane plaid. I hooked this area in a hit or miss style.
When all the hooking was completed, I added the spilled chicken feed by sewing French knots with a beautiful variegated wool yarn. If this rug were destined for the floor, I wouldn’t have done the French knots, but would have just hooked in some browns in that area. Knowing that this piece will hang on the wall has given me some freedom to embellish it a bit. When the edges have been bound and the rug has been hung at the head of our bed, I will post a photo of it.
There’s a lot of beauty out there and my hens are bringing some of it inside.