Tuesday, 28 March 2017

April meeting of the Yarra Valley Rugmakers

Hello fellow rug hookers
The next meeting of the yarra Valley Rug makers will be held this Saturday 1st April in Warrandyte.
All welcome 

Sunday, 5 March 2017

Decision Time

I haven't worked on this rug very much, for a while now... I've been doing quilts and Wagga's, knitting, bedding... Embroidery...
Also, we changed the lounge room around, so I'm not sure where it will go. Sigh...
But, I'm ready to go forth with the understanding that, All Will Be Revealed. I'll just have to find a place.
So, with renewed enthusiasm, I had a few sessions dyeing blankets (maybe that's a hobby in itself). Also, I've been trying to get my head around how I might do the outer area. I don't like the original drawing anymore and the scribbles impede my thinking.
Looking at it today, I wonder if I might simply do big fat raised spots in the green?
Waddya think people?

Not sure... Maybe too close?

Saturday, 4 March 2017

March meeting of the Yarra valley Rug makers

We had a wonderful meeting today with all of  four of us present.  it was lovely to have Anne Marie with us again too.

Anne's craft room

 We first had a drooling tour through Anne's craft room. Joy was needing some rug wool to whip the edges of the finished panels of her Psalm 23 staircase rugs and wouldn't you know it, Anne had the right wool in the right colour. I'm not kidding, you really can find whatever you want in Anne's craft room. It is a crafters paradise, but there was a condition attached to this.
For Joy to be able to use it she first had to untangle the massive criss cross wound skein that it came in.  she soon discovered that this was not one continuous length of wool, but many short lengths of approx 10 metres each (only guessing the lengths), which is off course fine when you are whipping an edge.
Anne Marie continued with her chair pad rug, which is being hooked with her lovely home spun/ hand dyed wool. Gorgeous colours.

Anne really is nearly finished with her Gene Shepherd Fowl Mood rug

Chris is continuing with her 'Monstera' proggy, which is starting to put her in a fowl mood because it is taking so long to complete.  I (Chris) have decided that hooky is my preferred style of rug making. I have already gone through what seems like miles of wool, but much more is required. I would have preferred to use polar fleece but have found green hard to find in Op Shops- not Anne though, she has green, and from the Op Shops. So my good old wool is the stand-by. Miles more dyeing to complete as well, in lots of shades of green.
 Maybe I am exaggerating jus tad, but not too much. I am looking forward to moving it along on the frame so I can check out the front. Right now it just looks like a bunch of green stripes.

Anne's 'Fowl Mood'

Joy's Psalm 23 rugs

After a delicious on the go lunch, we had a brief discussion about available accommodation at next year's TIGHR conference in the UK, to which at least two of us hope to attend, maybe more.  After this Joy returned to her untangling and Anne, Anne Marie and I- Chris, returned to our hooking and progging and before we knew it, it was time to go home. Cheers till next time.

Thursday, 2 March 2017

Gidday fellow rug hookers
This is your official notice of our next meeting for the Yarra Valley rug makers, to be held on Saturday 4th March at Warrandyte. Hope to see you there.

Monday, 30 January 2017

Next meeting


Tuesday, 10 January 2017

Showcasing the work of Dana Psoinas- Rug Hooker extraordinaire

This month, the Yarra Valley Rug Makers are show-casing some wonderful rugs from a very talented Rug Hooker from the United States, who has been hooking for only six years.
Dana at Sauder Village with her rug entitled, "The Guardian"

Dana says; 
"My Grandmother was a painter and has encouraged me throughout my life. I've always been drawn to landscapes and portraits. I continued to focus on that throughout high school and college. However, instead of pursuing a career in the arts, I married and raised a family. As my family grew I continued to take classes in pastel painting etc... but I met my rug Hooking teacher Loretta Scena just when I needed her most. My children were grown and didn't need me as much. I was a little lost. Loretta and rug Hooking brought art back into my life. I fell in love with the wool immediately. There's just something magical about manipulating wool. I am so pleased to be a part of the rug Hooking community."

Dana is in the process of having some of her work documented in a book that will contain these and other of her beautiful rugs. We, of the Yarra Valley Rug makers and you, our readers are privileged to share in some of her work. I hope you like what you see. Please like and comment to encourage Dana with her rug hooking endeavours.
I asked Dana if she had any special thoughts on her rugs that she would like to share with us, as well as some of the thing she learned from hooking each rug. The following are her rugs and her comments. 

The Guardian
35: x 47”
Designed and hooked by Dana Psoinas
#2, #3, and #4 cut, hand-dyed wool, on a linen backing.
Hand-Dyed wool

The Guardian is a mystical interpretation from the fairy tale, Red Riding Hood, but unlike the fairy tale, Dana wanted Red Riding Hood and the wolf to be companions.
Dana says, “Her face was the easiest for me. Her hair the most fun. The cape was so much harder than I thought it would be. I have a red chenille blanket and I had my daughter, myself, my son’s girlfriend model for me. I love the idea of hooking a story. This rug changed and evolved as it went. As it's not real, it was a challenge and a freedom of imagination.
background colors
The birches were cool. I learned that a birch is a birch no matter where. WHY did I have to make so many in my design? Thank you Michele M for your fabulous hand-dyed wool! 
The wolf was one of the scariest things I've ever had to hook! It was my first realistic animal. I often said that it's my pattern, so I can just cut the wolf out. Perseverance again. Hook, and un-hook......try again. The feeling of it finally being finished was wonderful!"

The Shahman
26” x 32 ½“
Designed and hooked by Dana Psoinas
#2, #3, and #4 cut hand-dyed wool on a lined backing
Additional materials; sparkly wool, ribbon and silver thread

This rug was inspired by a photograph of a man from Tibet, by an unknown photographer. 
"I was drawn to his lovely wrinkly face, full of life and expression. Since I couldn't find the photographer, I moved him to North America. I've always loved American Indian art.

I wanted to add fire, water, earth and air, since to me The Shaman is the keeper of the land and protector of the people.
I learned to use different fibers to acquire the look that I wanted. I learned to let my rug evolve. I'm pretty good at keeping the big picture in my mind, but you have to listen to your heart as new ideas come to you. Don't be too rigid with your original idea."

The Green Woman- An adaptation of Loretta Scena's pattern by that name
26 ½ x 28 ¼
Hooked by Dana Psoinas
Adapted, with permission from the pattern, “Green Woman” by Loretta Scena


The Green Woman was Dana’s first portrait.
Hooking this portrait was a natural extension to her love of drawing them, which led her to paint in wool instead of using pencils and paints.
“I've enjoyed working on this rug so much”, says Dana. “Loretta Scena's Avatar patterns just open your imagination up to so many possibilities. She made me realize that I could create anything.”
The details and shading in this rug are incredible and move the eyes from one area of the rug to another, where you continue to find more and then realize there is not one but three faces present.

The Muse
18 ½” x 23 ½”
Designed and hooked by Dana Psoinas
#2, #3 and #4 cut wool on linen
Hand dyed wool, shiny ribbon, thread and one earring

 An apt name for this lovely rug, the dictionary defines muse as, 
"A person — especially a woman — who is a source of artistic inspiration." And that is exactly what this rug is about.

Dana designed this elegant pattern for a workshop on how to hook flowers. 
"I learned that it is so difficult to make a pattern that have fine shading involved! My poor teacher must have been horrified when she received my multi-colored pattern in the mail! It was the only way I could make sense of the background. Also, I learned about hair. Highlights first, then low-lights and lastly everything in between. It was a challenge to hook hair which actually looked like it was pinned up.
Creamy skin is HARD to do! Patience. Don't be afraid to reverse hook until you get it right. My favorite part of this pattern was figuring out her silk shawl, trying to give it a silky look.
The fun bit was adding an earring which belonged to my daughter and was her belly button ring from her High school days."

Dana’s rugs are certainly among the best I have seen and she has a great future in the Rug Hooking world. I am sure we will see a lot more of her. 
Thank you Dana for being so generous with the sharing of your rugs and taking the time to write  the comments on each of them represented here.
You can see more of Dana's rugs on The Welcome Mat, HERE
If this link doesn't lead to her page on the mat, you may have to sign up to become a member first. It is free and well worth it.