I have been thinking about this post for three days. I even tracked down some of my past rugs. Of course, I have a story that must go with it. Back in the old days, when I was a student. I loved art, any kind of art. One of my teachers in third grade, gave us burlap and yarn and let us sew with big needles and showed us how to stitch all of the embroidery stitches. I was in heaven. Then a girl in our class taught us how to knit. You couldn't do this now, but we sat on the playground after lunch with our knitting needles and yarn and knitted our little projects. I was hooked. My Mom got a pattern, a flour sack and I happily embroidered sitting by her on the couch. That has never left me.
In high school, I really wanted to learn how to do pottery. I took a class, but I got kicked out. Because the teacher said, " In all my years of teaching, I have never encountered a student with no artistic ability whatsoever." (I still hear that in my head all of these years later, like before I said yes to the granny rug. I have to fight myself all the time.) But all of this to show you my rugs I sold, in my Etsy store. There were people that paid money for my rugs. I still laugh to myself. That aside, my daughter told me long, long ago. " Mom, I am not really a good artist, but I want to do it, so I work really hard at what I do, saying you don't have any artistic talent is a cop out, what you are really saying, is you don't want to work hard enough." It has really changed my thinking. I hear that in my head too. When I am making excuses in my head.
These will be my own patterns.
This was one of my early patterns. I started hooking because I thought I know I can draw rug patterns, and hook them and this was my attempt.
This was Stretch. I actually had people contact me to draw out and hook patterns. This was a fun rug to hook. I only made one. Maybe I should go back and try to replace it.
When I first started hooking, I really loved guineas and chickens. Well, I still do. I had a man in Ohio who was redoing his house, and he would contact me and give me ideas and I would try to do that. He also hung my rugs in his business. It still gives me a feeling of embarrassment when I think of it.
He wanted a dog rug. He mounted this one on a frame. I tried to send him lots of other dog rugs ideas, but he said no, he wanted me to do it. So this was it. I have never done another one of these either.
Here is one of my early chicken rugs. I had never met anyone except on the internet, I have never gone to a rug hooking class, so I had to be entirely self taught. I am so glad there was You Tube videos, but the other day, I was cleaning off one of my bookcases, I have so many books on how to hook rugs, that I read over and over. So in a way, I had the best of teachers.
These were my early rugs. As you can see, I was still trying to figure out how to bind them. I enjoy binding now, but it was something I had to make myself like.
Then there was this. The original rug was a pattern from Sharon Smith. The first one I did, I was gradually loosing my sight. The colors in my other rabbit rug, are not good because I hooked with what I could see. After I had my eyes fixed, I had this idea in my head. I told my daughter and she was living in Arizona at the time. I sent her the paper and she drew out that pattern for me. This became and is my favorite rug.
This rug still makes me a happy and I still have this one. I never could sell this one. I had to dye the wool to match the colors in my mind. Looking at it now, of course I see my mistakes, and what I would change but for the most part, I still like it. This was the first rug I did, because I could see. I never take my sight for granted now.
So that is my long, long post. Thank you so much for still being here. Its really what I love is waiting such a long time to learn to rug hook, and it still is my passion. I just wish I wasn't out of room because I have so many rugs now. I think a bit longer in the choosing of a pattern.
Oh, here is my update on my Granny rug.
I am working on the background. I am enjoying seeing all of the other rugs. This has been such a fun time for me.
Thank you so much for visiting me today,
“Never be limited by other people’s limited imaginations.”
— Mae Jemison