Rug Hooking thru Unemployment

Welcome! I started this site to mark the progress on I rug I started when I was laid off from my job, (Yikes!) in October. It is to be my largest rug yet, estimated to measure 8' x 10' when it's completed. While I spend a great deal of my day searching for employment, I also spend time working on this rug. It has become a great source of joy and creativity. I hope to have found a job by the time I finish the rug. I will put updates to show my progress and also post some of my other pieces.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Big Rug Update

I've almost finished the border of the second 1/2 of my big rug. I took a picture of myself sitting on it so you can see how large it really is...I'm six feet tall!!

Ugly jacket/Beautiful wool!!

I found this fab lime green 100% wool jacket at the Haverhill Salvation Army Store. Can you believe that it was donated direcetly from a still had the original price tag on it!!? It may be an ugly jacket but cut up it will be beautiful in my rug! I hooked some and it's perfect!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

...out of nowhere a hero comes along

Yesterday my car was buried a ton of hard, frozen snow. After about 20 minutes of trying to dig it out, I was soaked, sore, cold and frustrated. I had managed to clear about 1/2 foot of snow and was near tears. Then, from around the corner came a small beige, beat-up little pick-up truck with a snow plow attached. In a blaze of smoke and steam it pulled up next to my car. "Let me see if I help you" said the young man in the driver seat. It took him about 10 passes with the plow to clear the sides of my car; the piles of snow where so heavy and his truck so weak, he would stall with every effort. But he keep going. He had a friend sitting in the truck with him who would nod at me with each pass. After they had cleared my car, they went on to help my neighbors.

I had taken note of a company logo on the side of truck, a family welding business, so as soon as I had finished clearing off my car, I went inside and logged on to my computer to post a thank you. I found the company name, there was a post in big black letters saying "This company is no longer in business. Company closed." After thinking for a moment, I went to my wallet and took out the much needed 10 dollar bill that was in there and ran back outside.

I flagged the truck over as it drove down our street and told the drive,"Thank you, thank you so much for digging my car out" I said. "Yeah, that snow is tough" replied the driver. After a moment of silence, I handed them the $10. "This for both of you," and feeling it was so little for what they had done for me and all my neighbors said, "at least it will cover some of gas." He just took the money, said "Thank you Mame" and drove down to the next side street, where they got back to plowing people out with their mighty little truck!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Go Red Soxs!

The Green Wall, Citgo Gas Sign, peanuts, hot dogs, tickets to get into the game, retired numbers, balls, socks...this rug has something for every Red Soxs fan! It measures 3 1.2'x 2'.

Another Boston Rug....

A big fat happy Boston Terrier surrounded by the green ivy of Harvard, a Boston Bean Pot, a cup of Tea and a Cod. Lady bugs are found on the top of the dome of the Capital Building so I thought I better put some in!! This rug measures 4' x 3.

I love Boston! This rug depicts some of my favorite Boston icons; places that are a “must see” for any visitors!! We have Paul Revere’s House, the Duck Boats, the Ted Williams Tunnel, the Christian Science Building, the Capital with it’s golden dome, the Zakim Bridge, Durgin Park with a feisty waitress holding her bean pot, the Custom House, Symphony ½ shell, Fenway Park, the Oyster House, the Old North Church, the Swan Boats, a few of the "Make Way for Ducklings" sculptures, a Boston bus, T sign, and an arrow pointing to Filenes’s Basement!! Have I left anything out? If I have, it’ll have to go on the next rug!

I used lots of tweeds in this rug to give the impression of brick and stone. The wool used in Old North Church is from a suit coat that was made in the 50"s!

This rug measures 4’ 8” x 2' 8”. This rug is edged with cording that is then wrapped in 100% wool yarn. The cording adds weight that keeps the rug edges flat and gives the rug a beautiful, rich, finished look.

Monday, January 18, 2010

This brightly colored rug depicts whimsical animals and flowers. I call it "Fab Flowers and Friends." There’s a pig, a dog, a cat, tulips and more!

My designs are modern but they also contain traditional rug hooking techniques. The multi-colored background of this rug is hooked in a design called "Hit or Miss". This technique was often utilized by rug hookers that were using up scraps from previously hooked rugs.

Rug measures 4’ 5” x 2’ 3".

This rug is called "Sophia and her friends" or "Boston Tea Party"; which ever you prefer. This is the tea party of my dreams! Good friends, great hats, fab furnishings, a pet and lots and lots of cake!! This rug is bright, vibrant and alive! It is rich in color, texture and movement! The background swirls in 4 shades of blue, contrasting with the red, pink, burgundy and grey border. The rug has a sewn in channel on the back for hanging or would be just as happy on the floor!

Sophia and Friends is featured in “The Complete Guide to Collecting Hooked Rugs. Unrolling the Secrets” by Jessie Turbayne.

Rug measures 5’ 10” x 3’ 11”. It’s a biggie!! This rug is edged with cording that is then wrapped in 100% wool yarn. The cording adds weight that keeps the rug edges flat and gives the rug a beautiful, rich, finished look.

I upcycle as much as possible in all my rugs, cutting up suits, pants, coats and skirts to use in my designs. When I can’t find a color I need in my old clothes bin, I use 100% wool cloth that is hand dyed to the color I need.

Here is the rug by Christmas. Remember, what you're seeing is only 1/2 the rug!

In October of 2009 I was, much to my surprise and dismay, laid off from my job as an artist for a small company in Haverhill, Ma. I moved to Haverhill for this job and was not able to relocate until my lease ran out in January of 2010. So, while I was trapped here in and looking for a job, I started on my first large scale rug as a way to get thru the long days. I hope to have found a wonderful new job not located in Haverhill by the time I've completed the rug. As you can probably tell, I am not overly fond of Haverhill. The rug has become my constant companion. I lug it everywhere and work on it whenever I can. I'm designing it as I go along....I know, horrors of horrors to most rug hookers, but I'm very sure it's all going to work out perfectly and everything will match up when I go to sew it together. I am now going to attempt to post some pictures of the rug in process. It's planned to measure about 8' x 10' when I've finished.

I am very lucky to belong to a group of rug hookers lead by none other than the famous Jessie Turbayne. She claims that none of her hookers has ever made an 8' x 10' so I'm hoping to be the first!!