Rug Hooking Hall of Fame

I  have returned from vacation and a visit to Sauder Village Rug Exhibit where I was honored to be inducted into the first class of the Celebration Hall of Fame.  Here a a couple of pictures of the event which I was able to share with my sister.

Impressions of Sauder Village

I know this is long overdue, but when I got home from Sauder Village, I was so far behind at home and at work that I have been playing catch up all week.  So this morning I have a bit of a breather (although laundry awaits me) to share some impressions of my visit to Sauder this year. 

Here are pictures of me with my rugs and Alexander with his.

My Wool Snapshots class was totally fun.  Thanks to my sister Tiffany for helping out as my TA.  All the women in the class were troopers and went home with pieces that were started and headed in good directions.  I want to share with you Stacie Littlejohn's piece which she has just finished and sent to me.  It is so wonderful capturing the impression of her little boy climbing his first tree (he is 38 now and her grandchildren climb the same tree).

Other impressions.  Well the Sauder Award went to the leaves that all of us hooked for the Wool Bomb.  Mine was a rainbow leaf where I tried to used all the colors in the color wheel (top row in the center).

Loved these pieces by Marilyn Becker and Kristen Brown and Martha Lowry.  Marilyn's piece had intricate work on the lace dress that was stunning in real life, and the whole thing was created with wool that Marilyn dyed with natural dyes from nuts and berries.  Kirsten's pig was so cute with all the wonderful color.  Martha's primitive dog is lovely with soft muted color that gives the rug a feeling of quiet.  All these are in the Celebration of hooked rugs this year.

Really loved Susan Feller's movement toward fiber art and exploring straight lines in these barn doors. 

Liked these impressionistic leaves by Lori LaBerge.

After Sauder

Had a great trip to Sauder Village this year.  Here are some photo highlights. 

Satu 2014.  36" by 48".  Designed, dyed and hooked by April D. DeConick.  Exhibited in originals category.

Mary Magdalene 2013. 30" by 40".  Designed, dyed and hooked by April D. DeConick.  Exhibited in the Celebration special exhibit.

Nine series 2012-2013.  30" by 30".  Designed, dyed and hooked by April D. DeConick.  Exhibited in special Rug Hooking Magazine exhibit.

Maggie 2014.  12" by 12".  Hooked by Alexander DeGreiner.

I was honored to be awarded the blue ribbon for the invitational dye challenge for my eggplant gradation and sparkle wools.

Mary Magdalene at Sauder Village

I had a wonderful time again at Sauder Village Rug Hooking Exhibition this year.  The show was amazing as always with beautiful Celebration Rugs (congratulations to all the winners) and a very special exhibit of American hand sewn rugs that I have never seen before.  These rugs predate hooked rugs and show all kinds of fancy piecework and threads.  I bought the book that was on display.  There was also a special exhibit of hooked portraits of the US presidents by Nola.  Wow I still can't believe she created all those presidents in one year.   Bought her book too.

Mary Magdalene. 2013. 30" by 40". Forgotten Women Series.  Designed, dyed and hooked by April D. DeConick.   Winner of Sauder Village People's Choice Award 2013.

When I traveled up to Deanne Fitzpatrick's earlier in the summer, I drew out an oversized portrait (30" by 40") of Mary Magdalene based on an antique German mosaic of unknown date.  The mosaic itself features the virgin Mary in blue.  But to me, this is the face of Mary Magdalene.   So I gave her a red cloak instead.  I worked on her a bit in the car (it was a long car ride to and from Texas), but found it difficult going since her features were so big that it was hard for me to see what I was doing until I had a huge area hooked.  This meant that I rehooked her face three, if not four times, before I got it the way I wanted it.  Once I got home, I went into a rug hooking marathon and worked hours on end to complete her in time for Sauder.  The night before I flew out, she was done.  I packed her in my suitcase and took off on a jet to Michigan.


Here is a picture of her hanging at Sauder.  I thought that she really commanded the room when you walked in to the exhibit, glowing there in her scarlet cloak.  I am so honored that she won the People's Choice Award for her category (People, Places and Pictorials).  She is the favorite of my rugs and will be stretched on canvas, framed and hung in my office above my desk.

New Starter Palette

As I have been dyeing colors to complete the Palette Constellation Rug, I have been also working on dyeing the new colors for the Starter Palette that I included recipes for in the revised version of The Wool Palette (see sidebar to order).  I created starter recipes to help people begin the palette process without needing to create their own colors if they don't want to.  The recipes I created allow the colors of the second palette to be integrated with my original palette.  This way I have extended my color palette to 134 colors instead of 67.  The second Starter Palette contains foundational dyes that I use in my original palette, so there should be a seamless integration when I use colors from both palettes in my rugs.  I am excited to extend my value options from 536 to 1076!

Pictured here is the red color wheel family: 201 (red), 202 (red-orange), 203 (orange), 204 (orange-red).  These are some of the wools that I will be putting into my kits for the Glorious Color Caddy we will be hooking at Sauder in August.

Turning down the next row

So my Palette Constellation is a BIG rug, although Alexander has grown taller than it is high.  At least it is the biggest rug I have ever tried to hook.  It is going to end up about 9 feet long and 4 feet wide. 

I am measuring my progress by the rows I finish and I am now working down the 8th row.  That means that I am almost 3/4ths finished. What holds up the show is when I come upon a color that I don't have dyed in my stash anymore.  So I dyed a couple of colors last night and will work on a few more in between other commitments this week. 

On the dyeing front, I have started to dye up a second palette which I am going to be using as my Starter Palette for my dye classes.  The recipes will integrate into my primary palette, so that means I am creating a subsidiary palette that will give me another full range of colors to complement the 67 I already have.  These are the basic Starter recipes that I included in the Revised Edition of my book, The Wool Palette.  I have quite a bit of yardage of the Starter Palette to prepare for my Sauder dye class this August, so I am starting on it already with a yard of 201, my Starter Red.  I liked how it turned out; just took it out of the pot so will post pictures another day.

Just for the record. It is fascinating hooking the Palette Constellation rug because I am getting to double check all my colors.  When I see something off in the progression of color, I am going back and redyeing to see if something was off the first time around.  What I am finding is that when the dry dyes go into solution, that blue dyes are unstable.  If they sit in solution much longer than a week (and then they need to be refrigerated) they turn gray.  When you go to use the old solution, the blue dye has turned into something else.  So this means that any recipe that uses a blue dye of any sort is vulnerable.  I have not found this to be the case with any other color which all seem to last quite a long time (not refrigerated) in stable solution. 

Magadelina Briner exhibit

Evelyn Lawrence and Kathy Wright put together a terrific special exhibit for Sauder this year.  It was a real treat to get to see it in person and purchase the self-published full-color 80 page book that they wrote on the subject.  It is called Rug Hooking Traditions with Magdalena Briner Eby published 2011 by Traditions by Wright & Co., 588 Flanagan Station Road, Winchester, KY 40391; (859) 745-5740; $24.95. I highly recommend contacting Kathy Wright to purchase a copy of your own. 

The exhibit and book feature the rugs of Magdalena Briner Eby (ca. 1832-1915; Perry County, PA).  She hooked American folk art rugs throughout her lifetime and her work is now found in some of the most distinguished private collections.

Lawrence became interested in Briner's rugs when she noticed seeing one of her designs in Joel and Kate Kopp's book, American Hooked and Sewn Rugs: Folk Art Underfoot (my favorite hooked rug book).  Lawrence became "obsessed" with finding more Briner rugs, and searched books, catalogues, auction sales, and private collections.  Every time she found another rug, she worked on her own to reproduce it, even playing around with natural dyeing techniques to achieve the same colors of wools.

The exhibit and the book show both the old rug and Lawrence's reproduction.  It was so thrilling to see them side-by-side.  The rug known as the "Great-Granddaughter's Rug" (left) received the 2011 Sauder Award for best exemplifying the mission of Sauder Village.  This rug was also reproduced in paint on a wooden board and mounted on the Ranger Station on the Tuscarora State Forest trail near the area where the Eby family owned property and Jacob and Magdalena were newlyweds.  It represents the first ever Trail Rug (after the fashion of the Quilt Trails).

Barbara Carroll offers the patterns of Magdalena's designs as Lawrence finds them.  You can find all of them at her website by clicking HERE.

My news

On Friday morning as Alexander and I were jostling along on the train back to Houston, my sister sent me this photo via her phone (left).  My rug, Alexander at Sauder, won the People's Choice Award in its category in the Sauder Village Rug Exhibit!  We were so thrilled we did a gig on the train and when we got home, Wade took us out to dinner at one of my favorite Thai restraurants. 

School starts tomorrow for all of us, so I will try to post my reflections and memories of the Sauder exhibit 2011 during the week.  I have many photos, including this special one of Alex and me in front of the rug.

Alex at Sauder

I am quickly posting this picture from my sorry for the less than good picture.  I will post better pictures and stories about Sauder once I get home.  We head back on the train tomorrow.  This picture is a proud Alexander in front of his portrait exhibited at Sauder Village.  

It is a GREAT show.  If you can get over to see it, it runs through Saturday.  The featured exhibit of Magdalena Briner's rugs is FANTASTIC!  I want to extend a huge thanks to Evelyn Lawrence and Kathy Wright for putting together the Briner exhibit.  More on this later.  But go and see it if you can.  It alone is worth the price of entrance.

Some of my Sauder favorites

Here are a couple of fun pictures...Alexander posing with his sunflower sack; my sister posing with her pine cone rug (top).

Here are a couple of my top favorites at Sauder this year: one was in the Celebration group hooked by Joanne Gerwig (Randi); the other is a big geometric which Alex liked too (does anyone know the hooker's name?, the tag came out too blurry in my photo for me to make it out).

ATC Swap at Sauder Village

One of the highlights of the Sauder Village rug show was the ATC Swap I attended on Wednesday afternoon. What fun to meet other ruggers and to exchange 'shares' of our rugs with each other! There were seven of us exchanging. So here are the ATCs I received in the swap.

"Pitchers of flowers" #oook, hooked by Kim Dubay on August 10, 2010.

"Yellow Dog" #8, hooked by Teresa Heinze.

"Tex" (Lama), hooked by Judith Rippstein, August 2010.

"Sheep Button & Country" #7, hooked by Kathy Wright, 5-14-10.

"Spider Lily", hooked by Barbara Barton, 2010.

Hot pink abstract, hooked by Donna Lees Bleam.

Pink and green abstract, Nottingham Series 8/9, hooked by Tiffany DeConick, 8-17-10.

Here is a picture of the trading table. What a great time and great memories of looking through everyone's trading cards and swapping with each other!

ATCs are fun to make and swap. Rug Hooking Magazine is holding a swap. If you send in a ATC by September 15, you will get an ATC returned to you by October.

Also, we have an ATC Swap group on Rug Hooking Daily. Post a picture of your ATC by the first of each month, and an exchange with another rugger will be made by the 15th. It's easy.

Off to Sauder Village

Alexander and I are leaving tomorrow by train for Michigan to visit my sister and her family. So I am packing up for Sauder. I am taking a few rugs I hooked this last year to exhibit: Saint Nicholas 2009, White Tiger Beauty, Lady Sunset, and my Christmas rug 2010 which I am just finishing. It is called O Christmas tree. Here is a sneak peek. I used wools from the Norfolk family (my blue-purple family).

Alexander is going to display his prodded sunflower which I sewed onto a jean sack for him. He carries his sleep buddies in it.

I will try to post while I'm at my sister's house, but it won't be as regular. I promise to take pictures at Sauder and post them afterward.

Getting ready for Sauder Village

This year I'm heading up north to visit my sister and we are going to go to Sauder for the rug exhibit. I just pre-registered some of the rugs I hooked this year, and can't wait to see what other people have been doing. And of course Noah's Ark. The exhibit is usually amazing, so I am looking forward to it.

Anyone else going?

PS: Is anyone interested in setting up a blogger coffee get-together? Around 10 am on Wednesday?