I had every intention of starting my Memorial Day rug, but other rug hooking projects jumped in line. I did design a rug for my daughter-in-law (there goes any chance of surprising her with it), I repaired two rugs for someone else, and I also had to get busy with the Magdalena Rug Hookers’ raffle rug.
Our raffle rug will be used to raise money, so our group can buy a marker to publicly honor Magdalena Briner Eby right here in New Bloomfield, (Perry County) Pennsylvania, where she lived and created her iconic hooked rugs. We have a few years to raise funds, but the sooner this rug is ready to be raffled, the better.
Barb Carroll of Woolley Fox, a Magdalena Briner Eby rug enthusiast and pattern designer, generously donated the pattern called, Magdalena’s Farm. [Patterns can be seen here.] A number of the Magdalena Rug Hookers have hooked the animals and a bit of the background. I am finishing up the background and once I start a project, I stick with it until it’s finished. I’m a bulldog! The background is fun to do and I’m using 8.5 strips, so it has gone fairly quickly. Hooking this in the style of Magdalena means that when you run out of one color wool, you use another. Her rugs were hooked with well-worn materials from old clothing and other household fabrics too worn out for other uses, so it probably took many different fabrics to complete a rug. Many of the wools that I used in the background are from thrift store garments. I also inserted a bit of dark purple in honor of Barb Carroll, who believes that every rug should have some purple. I agree!
Evelyn Lawrence and Kathy Wright have written the definitive book on Magdalena. To learn more about this folk artist, you can check out their book, Rug Hooking Traditions with Magdalena Briner Eby, here.
There’s a lot of beauty out there, and in the primitive simplicity of a Magdalena rug.