Tag Archives: canadian rug hooking

Zodiac Collection at Sauder Village 2012

The 16th Rug Hooking Week at Sauder Village, Archbold, OH is over and plans are being finalized for the next one August 14-17, 2013.  Below is the entire Zodiac Collection of hooked art (approximately 18″ x 26″) published in Rug Hooking Magazine J/F 2012 as it was presented for thousands of visitors.  Congratulations to the designers: Aries, Mariah Krauss, VT; Taurus, Patti Armstrong, Ontario,CN; Gemini, Sara Judith, British Columbia, CN; Cancer, Diane Learmonth, WA; Leo, Linda Rae Coughlin, NJ; Virgo, Francine Even, CT; Libra, Yvonne Autie, UK; Scorpio, Susan Feller, WV; Sagittarius, Jennifer Larmour, NY; Capricorn, Natasha Chan, IN; Aquarius, Jo Franco, W Australia; Pisces, Andrea Sheppard, Ontario, CN

Summer Vacation and Study in Ontario

Square Bales in Ontario

 Ready for a vacation and yet don’t want to travel too far?  Think learning about rughooking would be fun too?  Canada is a great destination for many New Englanders and those in Northern NY.  Loyalist College in Belleville, Ontario is a great setting for both of these goals.  The Summer Arts Program includes three different sessions with rug hooking artists, of course I would recommend July 16-20 with me! See the full catalog here Summer Arts 2012 Loyalist College, Belleville, ON  Registration begins April 13.

Trip Memories in Fiber

When there is not too much time to hook… but you need to record a memory, make a 5 inch square.  The following are vignettes of three great destinations where I have taught this summer.

Pacific Ocean, Central Michigan Sand Dunes, Prince Edward County, Ontario

Waves crashing on the black sand


 The Cambria Pines Rug Hooking Schoolwas site of my Pacific Ocean experience.  Thanks to Gene Shepherd this East Coaster has stepped into the cold, Pacific.


Vivid memory of Sand Dunes Lake Michigan

  Central Michigan is bordered on the left by Lake Michigan, there are giant sand dunes on the coast and inland they are covered with trees and grasses, hidden monsters.  This scene was during the Manistee Rug Hooking School in late June.

Square Bales in Ontario

While teaching at Loyalist College in Belleville, Ontario I travelled to Prince Edward County several times.  One visit caught their technique of stacking the square bales of hay into small pyramids prior to pick up.  Went back three days later and the field was empty.  Goes to show you, carry your camera and a journal to catch memories.

Canada Tour

Feeling abit like the Royal Couple, (Will and Kate), I have been in Canada since June 24th, hosted by Susan Sutherland in the Kitchener/Waterloo area to conduct a fraktur design workshop within the Mennonite region of the design source.  The following hostess was Anne Boissinot who lives near the McMichael Collection in Kleinburg.  We toured this museum complex for a full day, exchanging our artistic views.  What a great way to learn– visit a museum with a friend with similar interests.

I stopped briefly at Rittermere-Hurst-Field to lunch with Jeanne Field, Andrea Shepphard and the family/workers.  Will be back for the Circle of Friends on July 9th in Aurora.  See www.Letshookrugs.com for information.

Now in Belleville for the two weeks, enjoyed Canada Day by touring Prince Edward County.  Art exhibits, farmers markets, and a beautiful day all recorded in my mind or on camera.  Took shots of the sun moving across a mowed field highlighting bands at a time.  The square bales were stacked in pyramids to be picked up later.  Shapes, light and values were on my mind since this is the theme for the Loyalist College class beginning July 11th.  www.Loyalistfocus.com see Susan Feller for details, opening in class still.

Loyalist Schedule

The summer program for Loyalist College in Belleville, Ontario, Canada will be online at www.LoyalistFocus.com on March 25.  My class is listed for the week of July 11-15 and can be found on page 19 of the catalog.  I am thrilled to add that one of my pieces was selected for the back cover also.  Rug hooking on the cover of a college brochure!

Value scale and swatches

The class will focus on VALUE and the other Elements and Principles of design. Bring a work in progress for consultation.  There will be daily exercises using rughooking and we will work up a new pattern for each person.  Expect to incorporate contrast, and values into  your design. Geometrics would be a great way to address this subtle, yet very valuable element.

I will be studying at the McMichaels Collection outside of Toronto the week before and expect to bring these experiences to the class.

I lodge at the College also and am looking forward to spending evening hours with resident students.  We had a great time the last two years visiting Belleville restaurants, eating on campus and going out to the County.

Hooked on the River

A retreat should slow the participants lifestyles down to just the focus of their work.  The Hooked on the River retreat does just that. 
New and old friends gathered along the Shenandoah River for three days creating fiber art, sharing words of wisdom, laughter and praise.  The core of this group is members of the Old Dominion Chapter of Pearl McGown Rugcrafters others from the region join in to make the 22 attendees.

My urban experience- Ottawa

Why not just go two hours out of my way after travelling for two weeks and visit Barbara Lukas and Ottawa, Canada. She lives right in the city, yet in a tree-lined historic district, and took me by car and foot all over. We hit the hightlights and more, even stopping to hear part of an outdoor concert, whizzing past the longest ice skating rink (not in season),  over to Quebec and the thrift shop haunts for stuff and FRENCH fries. 

My art lesson was at the National Gallery where we toured the Canadian Arts Galleries focusing on the Group of Seven towards modern.  Seeing artwork in person validates the scale, techniques, materials and colors which the artists chose for their pieces.  Reproductions are informative but I can’t emphasize too strongly to anyone, “Visit art”.

We went to the Farmers Market and I had bubble tea.

Two Bubble Teas and Barbara's stripes

The caramel Tapioca pearls are fun and come through the special wide straws quickly.  We had to return to this shop as the tapioca were not ready when she opened at 10;00.  Well worth the return for the novelty and visual.

Barbara invited several fiber friends over for dinner. And each brought along some of their work.  The evening was filled with sharing and learning from each other. We covered topics as broad as how to preserve using new media current fiber artists at work, in studios or even as we just did in a salon session talking about creativitiy. Other topics were use of color, materials, inspirations for designs, how exact one medium (quilting) is and forgiving another (rughooking).  What benefits we derive from working slowly with our hands and fibers to create.   I look forward to returning to this group in the next year and continuing our effortless journey.

A visit with Jeanne

Since my travels from Holland Michigan to Belleville, ON take me right past Aurora and Jeanne Field, we arranged a stop over.  What a thrill for me to spend down time with a wise and contemporary rughooking maven.  We chatted, cooked (well certainly missed Andrea and Jim for that part), and solved all the problems in our small universe together for two days.

A sneak peak into the studio of Rittermere-Hurst-Field revealed a new collection of stockings by several rughooking artists.  Andrea had asked these people to create a stocking design and they were revealed at a Circle of Friends hook-in sponsored by the company.  The indigenous people’s design on top is Jeanne’s.

Collection of new designs- Stockings

Loyalist College and Belleville Ontario, Welcoming

This was my second year instructing on the staff of Loyalist College in Belleville, ON, Canada. Again an inspiring group of students, who kept me working them for five full days.  I have enjoyed traveling and seeing how different groups approach rughooking studies.  The Canadian’s are serious and dedicated to improving their skills.

The new director of Continuing Studies is Holly Cockeline, who come to find out hails from Nova Scotia where she was exposed to rughooking by association with Dianne Fitzpatrick.  Seems from her interest during the week she will be pulling a few loops again in her new home.

This workshop centered around the basics : Elements and Principles of Design. We gradually built on these concepts using small 5 inch mats and the same materials.  By mid week the suggestion for next year’s lesson plan was to zero in on VALUE.  Everyone mentioned and showed me with their pieces that the session helped them see, and grow in their art. 

Registration opens in mid February,

Colorful inspirations Hollyhocks

While in Belleville, the residents of the Dormitories (myself included) entertained ourselves with sidetrips.  Pictured are Andrea and Peggy at the honor system seed box for wild hollyhocks. We travelled to the far eastern side of gorgeous, artistic Prince Edward County one evening in search of these flowers.

Stopped along the way in one of the towns for very local ice cream… delicious. Then saw the Lake on the Mountain, an unexplained phenonomen (high above the water line of waterway)… and ended up eating dinner at a Tim Horton’s.

There was a great seafood restaurant in Belleville on Sydney Street just north of the bridge (would be on your right if heading north immediately after coming over the bridge) Name escapes me right now.

Way Up North

Cobourg, Ontario, Canada- A total of 63 hours from farm to event to farm again and what an intense experience.  The 44th OHCG Annual Conference “Hooked on the Waterfront” was held in Cobourg, Ontario April 29-May 2, 2010.  Attended by 305 of the 863 members from chapters around the province of Ontario and members at large. includind one day workshops, mini sessions, general meeting and an awesome exhibit of over 600 rugs surrounded by thirteen colourful vendors this event was coordinated by five of the chapters along the northern shore of Lake Ontario.

I picked up Deb Smith, Editor of Rug Hooking Magazine early on Friday, just outside of Harrisburg, PA and we continued the easy commute (but long) up I81 crossing the border at 1000 Islands Bridge and hooking up onto the 401 going West to Cobourg.  We arrived and checked in to an organized and cheerful group.  The evening ice breaker was a mini lighthouse sketched on burlap with precut strips, which we hooked while chatting with Yvonne Muntwylier (Past President of TIGHR 2000-2003) and a brand new member/rughooker Karen.  Yvonne is full of creative juices and her excitement along with our encouragement assured Karen she was on a great journey as retirement loomed next year.

There were many familiar faces and the large name tags helped make the personal connections.  Deb was introduced to the entire audience the next day, as the members at large were asked to state where we were from.

We were off to the exhibit and vendors by 10:30 entering the show with open mouths and cameras flashing for hours.  The display system is cumbersome to assemble using chains dropped from the top rod, and sliding dowels through the links with balanced rugs. The final effect is a great exhibit.  This year the backdrop used black drapes, and each chapter was responsible for their section.

I was looking for works which caught my eyeto include in the upcoming book and took many photos to hunt down the artists.  Many of the students at Loyalist College last summer had completed their fraktur designs and hung them.  It was so much fun to come across each while looking at the full exhibit.  Even a design by Nancy Jewett, of Fluff and Peachy Designs was there, and I took a photo to send off to her.

A tribute to Germaine James included almost twenty of her works and a photo collage.  Terri James attended the full weekend, talking with friends and enjoying the close friendship.

The vendors were busy all day, filled with colourful wools and supplies. 

Andrea Sheppard and I took Patti Armstrong’s workshop “Working with Alternatives” which was an economical dip into the recycled materials way beyond just recycled woolen clothing.  Since Patti is allergic to wool, it burns her skin on contact, she tries any item which can be pulled through the backing, from shoe laces to pantyhose (dissecting even the heavy waistband into two strips sometimes).  It was a fun quick study for an hour, jumping into the small kit she had assembled for us with plastic bags for the sheep bodies, layers of a jacket, from outside to lining each giving a different effect.  And in the end even the shiny candy wrappers ended up peeking through the branches of our trees as fruit.  A tiny 5 inch square shadow box for $1.25 at the DollarRama gussied up with a green layer of paint by the disabled community she works with finished the project for under $10!  

Keep in mind Patti has been a past recipient of the Rowan Award (Best in Show) using alternative materials.  Her work is avant-garde yet set in the traditions of rughooking.  This leads me to comment on why I continue my membership and attendance in this group, the respect for tradition is strongly felt, yet in the displays at least 80% or even more are original designs.  Beginners are encouraged to use templates or just draw out their own first design.  The OHCG Teachers Branch certifies instructors and continues refresher courses annually on a specific topic.  As someone from the United States (we who are brought up to believe we are the best) I was humbled last year, at the first annual I attended, to see the heritage, tradition and contemporary art encouraged here in just one of the Canadian Provinces.  Wake up “Americans” we are not the only ones in this rughooking world!

Now off my high horse.  I really felt welcomed as a fellow member, and look forward to continued friendships, and many more through OHCG, cyberspace and at the next annual in London, ON. Interested in joining the fun visit http://www.ohcg.org