Wednesday Snow

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I had such fun doing this rug!  I was hooking on two other rugs, having nothing to do with Halloween or October and suddenly the idea for this one just came together!!!  I knew all the colours I wanted to use and I laughed all the time I was hooking it!  I had drawn the little eggplant witch many years ago and she just fit perfectly into this “Come in, Dearie” design!!!  (copyright, Sunnie Andress, 2007) This rug was shown in the Green Mountain Guild’s show this year at the Shelburne Museum in Vermont.  I loved the teal background wools (2 different ones).

This was a quiet day with snow off and on. It was one of those days that make you feel sleepy by the fire! I did manage to get in a little rug hooking today, finishing up the hooking on another chair pad. Now just the time to bind the edge, whip it with yarn and add the labels!

I was reading a little in one of my husband’s booklets about his family and thought one of the entries was so nice…and so true! : ) It was talking about a couple in the late 1700’s who were very different, the husband who was outgoing and “masterful” and the wife who was retiring and contemplative.

The entry went on to say, “But it is to be remembered that the battle is not always to the strong. Peace has her victories no less than war. The Mrs. was much given to quiet reading (as much as household duties would permit) and she was particularly well-versed in history. Such an example could not fail to make her children fond of books.
She knew her Bible and prayed daily. But her religion was of the unobtrusive kind, sweetly tempered, which found good in all men.”
I think I would have enjoyed knowing her!! : )

I seem to be getting error messages and am unable to load photos…so something is going on with the Blogs here on WordPress! I hope they fix it soon!!!  Hooray…something just fixed itself!!!  : ) 

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About My Hooked Rugs

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To those who have asked questions about my hooked  pieces, I do sell my work.

If you are interested in something you see on my Blog, you may contact me to see if it is for sale.  (Someone asked about chair pads and they are each $89.00 plus postage/insurance.)

I sell items on my website – Sunnie Andress Designs –  when I am able to have enough on hand to put them on the website!!!!  : )

 I sell Santas, Folk Figures and Hooked Rugs at the Vermont Hand Crafter’s Holiday Show in November.  (I am a member of Vermont Hand Crafters)  It is held at the Sheraton in Burlington, Vermont.

I am researching other places to sell my work but must be careful not to overextend myself!  I do a very limited amount of commissioned pieces and you can contact me if you have something in mind and you like my whimsical, folk art style.  (I do not do large rugs!!) : )  Thank you for your interest!

More Hooked Chair Pads

Vermont Floral Cottage  chair pad that I’m finishing up!  These chair pads are good for using up odds and ends of “wool worms” too…as you can easily stick them in here and there when you are doing whimsical or primitive designs!!!  As you can see from the pen marks on the unhooked backing, I changed my mind and changed the design as I was working!!!!!  LOL  (I do that often!!)  : )

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One of my “teaching” chairpads…the bird design below!   It was adaapted from an old Pennsylvania Dutch image!

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If you are a new rug hooker, I think you would enjoy doing some “freestyle” hooking on chair pads or small mats. …but sometimes new hookers feel uneasy about their drawing abilities!  As an alternative,  if you have a child or grandchild’s drawing, simple children’s drawings make delightful mats or pads! 

I like to give beginning students a circle template to draw around on their backing and then they can just draw some simple design to hook.  ( the bird above is one of the two or three patterns I suggest If they don’t want to draw something freehand!  The others are a pumpkin with stem and vines and a large sunflower)  : )

The nice thing about doing a round chairpad is that you are learning to hook around a circle, to hook your center motif and then decide the direction you want your backing rows to go, you learn how to sew rug tape around a circle, to whip the edge of the circle and finish the pad and you have something useful when you finish!!!  Also, chairpads finish pretty fast and you don’t have to wait for a large rug to get satisfaction!!!!!  LOL  Also, if you are new to rug hooking, hooking and finishing a chair pad or small mat will let you know if this is something you enjoy!  I happen to love the whole process…from designing to finishing!!!  : 0 )

Vermont Sunshine

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It’s beautiful in the northeast kingdom this morning!  Brilliant sunshine and shadow here at Old Crow Farm!  I am cleaning and organizing my rug hooking studio and getting in a bit of hooking here and there too.  I can’t believe all the “stuff” that seems to accumulate, even when I am giving lots (of things I won’t need) away  to those who can use them and to Goodwill, etc.  It seems the more I give away, the more I have!!!!  LOL  Do you have that problem?   Any “organizing” suggestions out there?

 When I see artists or craftspeople who have lovely, organized studios I wish mine was more like that!!!  But since I am in a converted attic in a little old farmhouse, with sloping ceilings and not much usable wall space…I’m just thankful that I have a place to work, even with the limitations!!!!!  : )  At least I can leave things out and just pull the curtain across the doorway so the mess isn’t seen!  I’m really very fortunate!  : )

Friday Snow-Santa-Hooked Chair Pad

A beautiful, snowy morning in Vermont! Just magical and so peaceful.

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I really love this kind of snow…the big flakes swirling softly down to the ground!

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This is one of my favourite Santas.  After he was done, I just couldn’t sell him!

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I have several Santas and figures that I didn’t want to part with, so they’ve become part of my home collection.

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Still Life with Zinnias -(c) S. Andress 2008

I’m really having fun with these chair pads…very freeing exercise to just draw on the backing and start hooking with no “transferring patterns” or colour-planning!!!!  It makes a change from working on my larger rugs and I find it is very relaxing.  (Of course, they finish up fast too and can be taken in the car with a small “sit-upon” or lap frame to work on!)  : )  Hook On!

Beautiful Morning & Fraktur Angel Rug

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This was the sky this morning after the snows of yesterday!  We do love Vermont!  We have some lovely, fluffy snow and it’s nice to see the sparkling white once again!

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Fraktur Angel Floral is based on several old frakturs and sampler images and uses many different browns and misc colours for the background (I think about 15 or 16 different ones!).  I also hooked it so that some of the motifs blend somewhat into the background and some stand out.  All my rugs are experiments…I love saying to myself, “What if I did….that?”   or     “I wonder how that would  look?”  LOL  The fun of finding these things out for myself is one of the wonderful things about hooking for me.  I’d rather not be told, “Oh, we don’t do that in rug hooking!” or “This is the only right way to hook!” 

When I teach beginning students, I always tell them that I am “giving them general advice and telling them how I design and hook“.  My technique is not written in stone!!!!  LOL  Once they learn how to pull up the loops and get comfortable with hooking, they can do anything they want to do!!!  I always refer them to good books and magazines written by very experienced rug hookers so they can see how others do their rug planning and hooking.  As I’ve mentioned before, I prefer not to colour-plan in advance but to choose a wool or 2 and then start right in, bringing in other colours as I go!  (Some hooking friends say that would drive them nutty…they want a plan to follow!!!!!)  That’s great too!  : )

More Hooked Rugs

I love to make what might be called “Memory Rugs”.  These are rugs that evoke memories of my childhood or what I imagine women of the past might be feeling as they make their rugs or quilts or other decorative or functional items for their homes.  This rug, “Granny’s Old Blue Vase”, was designed because I remembered that my Grandmothers, Aunts and my Mom all seemed to have an old homely blue vase in their collections.  Everyone used them for flower arrangements because they were such a good size!  After I hooked the main part of the rug and was deciding on a border (I don’t plan out all my rugs in advance!!!!) I suddenly remembered the knitted and crocheted afghans that all those ladies had draped over their sofas and chairs during that period of time!  I decided to make the border look like those ripple afghans!!!  It was such fun and I thought about all the women in my family and their creative work for their homes and families.  And I smiled a lot!!!  LOL

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This Country Farmhouse rug below was made for my own home.  Because we live in the country, I wanted a dark colour for my rug as we walk over it every day and can’t take off our shoes each time we come in! 

As I designed and hooked it, I was thinking about a country woman of the past who was making a rug using wool from  old and worn clothes.  I thought about the brown from old pants and knickers she’d saved and, perhaps,  some dark burgundy from an old skirt of her own.  How happy she would be if a friend or her mother or sister came by with a basket of wool scraps of other colours so that she could make a happy pattern on the rug instead of plain brown and burgundy! : )  As I thought about this, I was so thankful for the wonderful selection of wools and fabrics that we have today. 

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As the pieces above show, we can design a rug around a story or memory and enjoy the entire process as we hook!  Added to the fun of doing these rugs were the memories they evoked while I was hooking them.  I know many rug hookers create rugs that celebrate the lives of friends or family or depict special moments or events.  I enjoy doing that and I hope you do too!  : )