Last Spring I fell in love… again, but this time was extra special. I knew I was falling hard for this one as I stepped onto the porch on that warm, sunny day in May. Oh, the delight when I saw the colors overflowing from the totes, and the delicious smell of the linen furled out over the entire length of the deck! The blank canvas ready for my hands.
How enamored we rug hookers can be with a new project! Actually any rug on which I’m currently working is generally my favorite, but this rug in particular holds a special place in my heart.
For the past 4 years I’ve had the privilege of restoring a large collection of nineteenth century rugs that have become a major source of inspiration for me, and have renewed my love for designing and hooking. The genesis of this particular design was a late1800’s rug that was just too far gone to repair. I took the general diamond shape and added two different types of leaves. After some measuring and consulting about the design, I drew a small sample so that I could play with the color palette. I wanted softer, more muted colors to add to the antique look. A variety of Reds on a gray background, blues on tan background, some diamonds outlined, some plain. I also enjoyed mixing lighter values and different textures between the diamonds. The gold-colored crosses completed the pattern and were the grid lines.
With my small sample done, I was satisfied with the size of the blocks, the color scheme and the general layout of the rug so I moved on to tackle the big, blank piece of linen. Using a pencil, I drew a grid of lines so that I would get my diamond shapes straight. Being a true hooker, I couldn’t wait to actually start pulling loops so I made templates that I could lay on the grid, trace, and then hook one at a time. I didn’t draw the entire design first. I knew the rug would get heavier the more I hooked so I started in the center of the rug and worked toward each corner.
I can’t say exactly how many hours or days this project took to complete as I was away for several weeks in June and July, and the fall months were pretty busy too, with classes and other work-related events. But I can say that when I’m home, most days I hook one to two hours every morning.
I finished my big project after Christmas and just had to take a photo to commemorate the event.
This is the final place for my special love. An antique house with antique furniture and a (new) antique hooked rug.