Saturday, January 30, 2016

Color Planning ~

Next Saturday at this time, the Sauder rug hooking retreat will be winding to a close.  Two days of hooking heaven :)  Melissa and I will actually meet Bobbie there Thursday afternoon.  It's always fun time ~ I think this is our fourth year going. 
Of course I always agonize over what I am going to hook.  Presently there is n-o-t-h-i-n-g on my frame.  I am almost done binding my Lori Rippey stag rug and that means I am caught up on my binding.  That doesn't happen very often and when it does, I always vow not to let that happen again, but we all know the road to hell is paved with good intentions . . . lol.  I also have two more hearts to finish and stuff. 
Subject to change, of course, here is the rug I plan to start at Sauder.  Daisy, adapted from Lori Brechlin folk art by Spruce Ridge Studios.  It is a rather large (for me) pattern.  I plan to hook it with a dark background.
Wools I have pulled so far.

A couple years ago at the Lakeside hooking retreat, Bobbie was hooking it.  Here is her completed rug.  Wonderful, no?
Happy Saturday to you.  A very pleasant day on Ohio's north coast.  I even spent a bit of time raking leaves from the little brick patio.  One day closer to spring :)
Thanks so much for stopping by.
Pug hugs :)

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

3 1/2 Years in the Making ~

What Nots, an antique adaptation by the Woolley Fox, was started at the Heavens to Betsy Shaker Village rug retreat in July of 2012.  Upon returning home it was set aside until 2014.  I finally finished it in June of that year, rolled it up and there it sat until last week.  FINALLY I decided it needed to be finished (well, except for the label . . . sigh).  Here it is, hooked, bound and steamed.  I don't hook really big rugs, and this is the largest rug I've hooked to date.  It's 23 1/2" x 41", hooked in a 9 cut.  The colors are much richer in person.  They are quite accurate in the second picture.

I think it will reside in the living room in front of one of my favorite antique cupboards.

I know it's silly and it's only a number, but I have lost over 20 followers in the last month.  I was hoping to one day hit 400, but now I'm down to 368 :(  I know it's not just me because Saundra is whining about it, too.  (Love you, Saundra)
How the heck did it become almost February.  Wasn't Christmas just last week?  How is this happening???
It's a great evening for a fire.  It's 28* which really isn't bad for this time of year, but it's a very chilly 28* . . . lol :)
Thanks so much for stopping by.
Pug hugs :)

Monday, January 25, 2016

Finishing Hearts ~ "Betsy" Style ~

Since a couple people wondered, I thought I'd give you a quick how-to finish the hearts.  The finished heart is about 10" x 10", give or take a little.  After the hooking is complete, I cut out the heart leaving about 1" - 1 1/2" of linen.  I then zigzag around to prevent fraying.

I just thought I'd show the back so you could see how far apart the hooking is.

I use fray check in the crook of the heart and press the linen to the back.

I then lay pieces of wool on the wrong side of the heart.

CAREFULLY begin to trim away the excess wool.  It's better to trim away too little and continue to trim more.  I do not fold the edges under.  I then use a straight stitch (a whip stitch that is not slanted - does that make sense?) to sew all the pieces together.  Be sure to stitch only the wool and not catch the backside of the heart.  After you've stitched all the patches together, whip stitch your patchwork to the heart.  I leave an opening and lightly stuff the heart with wool snippets and a lavender sachet and then continue to stitch closed.

Time consuming, but worth the effort.  It takes me longer to do the patchwork back than it does to hook the heart.

If you have any questions, please feel free to email me.
Thanks so much for stopping by.
Pug hugs :)

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Two Down ~

And two to go.  I've hooked four hearts with hand torn strips and have two of them finished.   

I mean really "finished".  Stuffed with wool snippets and lavender and finished "Heavens to Betsy" style.  They will be heading to their new home tomorrow.

We were lucky here on Ohio's north coast.  No snow from Jonas.  I hope all those in the storm's path are safe, warm and able to enjoy being snowed in.  Today it's 36* and sunny.  I will take all the sunshine I can get :)
Fun little sign from a friend ~
Thanks so much for stopping by.
Pug hugs :)


Friday, January 22, 2016


Sometimes these 4 day weeks seem longer than a normal 5 day week.  To say I am happy it's Friday is an understatement.  Time to catch up on life and some much needed sleep :)
I finished the binding on "A true friend".  This fun pattern is by Cammie Bruce - Primitive Junky.  She has so many great patterns.  I refer to it as my Ellie rug since I hooked it to her likeness.  

For the first time, the last two rugs I've bound I used #8 cut wool strips.  I trim the backing to about 1 1/2" and zigzag the raw edges.  I then fold it over twice (to the front of the rug) and baste.  Basting is not necessary, but I prefer it to working with pins and I don't have any clips that I could use.  Then I just bind with the wool strips.  I really like the look.  I've used the same prep when whipping with wool or doing the crochet edge.  It really is quite simple.

After almost 4 days I have not heard from the give-away winner, so a big congrats to Kim, My Field of Dreams, out in California.  Please send me your snail mail address and I will get your package mailed next week. 
Thanks so much for stopping by.
Pug hugs :)

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

FUN New Finishing Book ~

You know how I feel about binding rugs and I know many of you feel the same way. Well, there is a new book out by Kathy Clark of Briarwood Folk Art. This is not your normal "how to bind a rug" book. Her motto is "Keep it simple, keep it fun and if possible make it a little sassy".  She has 11, yes count 'em 11, fun finishes to give your rug some pizzazz. How about a "wool wrap finish scrappy style"? Or an "easy peasy folksy finish"? "Asymmetrical curves finish"? "Sophisticated gimp trim"? They just sound fun, don't they?  To find out for yourself how to do them, you can order the book here.

I am thoroughly enjoying this book and hope to try one of her finishes soon.  I think you'd enjoy them, too.  And . . . she also sells some really great patterns.
Thanks so much for stopping by.
Pug hugs :)

Monday, January 18, 2016

Tired of Being a Grownup ~

Do you feel that way sometimes?  I went in to have a tire repaired and tomorrow and about $700 later my tire won't leak air :(  My car has "V" rated tires, whatever that means, and it took 3 stops to find a shop who could replace them.  Not the way I wanted to end my three day weekend . . . sigh.
I did finish my Maggie applique.  Lots of wonky little straight stitches.  Quick and easy to do.  Now it will end up in the pile that needs "finishing".

Tonight I will begin to bind my Ellie rug.  I really ought to bind the two large rugs that have been done for a year or two.
Pattern by Lori Rippey
Homespun Prims
What Nots
Antique adaptation
Woolley Fox

Post #1000.  WOWZA.  How did that happen?  Lots of blah, blah, blah and more blah, blah, blah to come :)  Thanks so much for giving me a reason to blog.  My readers are THE BEST.
Congrats to Bev Waters who entered the mystery give-away via email.  Bev, you have three days to contact me.  Please let me know if you are a hooker or do applique so I can choose some wool for you.
Thanks so much for stopping by.
Pug hugs :)

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Hibernating ~

It's not often I hibernate at home and I'm lovin' it.  Yesterday I didn't leave the house until evening when I went over to my sweetie's.  Today will be the same kind of day and it feels so good!  A roaring fire ~ strictly for ambience.  Unless you stand right in front of it, you don't feel the heat.

I have joined the Rebekah Smith's mystery stitch along on Facebook.  I would love to purchase the wool, but do not want to spend the money when I have so much wool :)  Yesterday I dyed the green needed.  I'm hoping it's a good green.  In looking at in in natural light, it may be too yellow, but is more green than showing in the picture.  It is "bronze green" and the formula is from the Emma Lou Lais/Barbara Carroll dye book.  I forgot to rinse it in liquid Downy.  I love how that makes it smell.  I may try one more shade in the dye pot if I can get the needed Cushing dye tomorrow evening. 

I finished hooking my other two hearts.  Next step is to zigzag the raw edges and start on the patchwork backs.

The penny mat is also done.

I started working on this little Maggie Bonanomi applique piece last evening.  I cut the wool pieces last summer so it was easy to get stitching on it.  I think it will end up being a small pillow.

I just finished my Ellie rug.  Don't ask me how, but I didn't cut enough wool for the letters and I had a terrible time finding the wool I used.  It took two days, but I finally found it.  I really don't like hooking letters.
For once I feel like I've accomplished much.  Too bad the darn cleaning lady didn't come and work her magic on the dust bunnies . . . lol :) 
Can you believe this is post 999???  I didn't know I had so many words in me :)

Thanks so much for stopping by.
Pug hugs :)

Friday, January 15, 2016


HAPPY FRIDAY and the start of a 3 day weekend for me.  No big plans, but an extra day off does the heart good.
I must share this amazing rug.  I wish I had a better picture and some close up shots.  This is Gail's first completed rug.  It is her own design and her hooking is absolute perfection.  It is perfectly flat and has not yet been steamed.  Every loop is the same height.  I'm guessing it was hooked in a 4 and a 6 cut.  Just breathtaking.  This gal is one fine hooker :)

I received this sweet heart from Julia in South Carolina.  I have made so many friendships because of this blog.  It is hanging in my hooking room where I can admire it daily.

Beautiful stitches.  Thanks so much Julia ~ for this heart and for your friendship.

I have no braided edge to share with you.  I got the wool strips braided, but made an error in joining the ends of the braid in to a circle.  Teacher Sue is coming to my rescue and is going to fix it for me.  By the time the error was discovered, it was already 8:30 and I still had an hour drive home.  Me thinks you will need to find a You Tube video because there is no way I can 'splain it to you.  So sorry :(
Just a reminder that there are still a couple more days to enter my give-away.
Thanks so much for stopping by. 
Pug hugs :)

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Un-focused ~

Sometimes I think I may be a little ADHD.  I am so close to finishing my Ellie rug. 
I put that aside to hook some hearts with hand torn strips.  These will be finished Heavens-to-Betsy style with patchwork backs.
The linen backing, though noticeable in the picture,
is not in person.

Gold wools used.

Red wool cut horizontally.

On my trip to California last summer, I stitched many pennies, but had done nothing with them so decided to put together a little mat.  Only one penny to go.  Using dyed crochet thread, my stitches are none too petite.

Tomorrow I'm off to the Hidden Hills Hookers to learn how to add a braid to my snowman mat.  I've seen Betsy Reed do it, but I need the hands-on experience.
So what are you working on?
Thanks so much for stopping by.
Pug hugs :)

Sunday, January 10, 2016

What a Difference a Day Makes ~

They say if you don't like the weather in Ohio, stick around for a day and it will change :)  This morning the rain quickly changed to snow.  In a matter of minutes, northern Ohio (and many other places) turned in to a winter wonderland (though I have better names for it ~ wink).

The view from my wool room.
Progress is being made on my Ellie rug.  I guess the letters are okay from a distance.  Up close they don't look that great, but I guess that's normal.  I changed the outline of the ear.  It's better, but still not sure about it.
I've not yet planned my next hooking project.  It's on my to-do list, but so are many other things :)
A couple people asked about the scar on Ellie's hind leg that was visible in the last picture I posted of her.  When Ellie was found walking the streets of Cleveland (how did she ever survive?), she was taken to Multiple Breed Rescue.  She had surgery for a luxating patella.  According to Wikipedia, "Luxating patella (or trick knee, subluxation of patella, floating patella, or floating kneecap) is a condition in which the patella, or kneecap, dislocates or moves out of its normal location."  These are pictures of pictures, so not the greatest, but you can see the little cast she was in.

Be sure to check out my previous post if you are interested in a mystery give-away.
Thanks so much for stopping by.
Pug hugs :)