Sunday, June 28, 2009

Caws Paw, Dino Rug and Braiding

I've started reworking the cats paw runner. This time around after taking out the cotton strips I was trying I'm using left overs from previous projects. Though today I'm cutting up some supplimentary colors to make the colors balance a bit more and make it more cheerful looking. I have a lots of dull muddy colors left from Walk Me and those are going in the Dino rug which I have also started. The cats paw is being worked on an old needlework scroll frame and the dino is on the oval hoop. I thought I'd do some simple primitives just for a break from my more elaborate designs.

The cats paw is a fairly common pattern with multiple variations of its design. I'm not even sure how old the design really is as you see variations on circle or shapes on a background color back to ancient times in various fiber crafts. The only thing different I am doing is making an irregular looping edge to it instead of a straight line edge, though that too has been done by different people. I'm also debating on building this--adding a braided edge then doing some small additional paws and enclosing them in braiding and adding them randomly until I have reached a size I like.

The braiding on Walk Me is proceeding slowly. I have almost finished the first round around the edges. So far it's going good.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

I've started the braided border

Backside of WM

Braiding for WM

Yesterday, I got the hooked part of the WM finished and have started sewing the braided edge on. It's slow going as I want to make sure that the braid isn't come loose from the rug and am sewing this first row in fairly close together stitches on both sides of the burlap. Once I've got this secure then I'll be adding the next rows until I get the border wide enough or run out materials which ever comes first.

I took a break today and am designing a new rug, one I've had in my head for awhile. It's a dinosaur shapes rug done in primitive scattered figure barnyard style. This one I've added 2 small borders, one 2" wide and the outer one is 1". I'm planning on doing this is leftovers from WM and what will be leftover from the braiding. It's going to be 30 x 41 on burlap which seems to work the best with my wide strips.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Walk Me Is Done--At least the hooking part

Three different color versions of Walk Me Please Dragon as I couldn't make up my mind which looked best. I'd kill for a decent digital camera. The rug is somewhere between 2 and 3 as to true colors. These where shot with me standing on a chair shooting down on the floor with my camera phone.

I got the the last stitch on Walk me done at 1:50 AM on Wednesday morning, the 17th. I had started in at around 2 Pm Tuesday afternoon and was determined to get it all done that night so I really pushed myself. My hand is still a little tired even today. Finished hooking area is 42 x 58, if I do 6" of braiding all around it will be 48 x 64 so around 4 x 5 foot total when done. The family rug I think is bigger I think it's 4 x 6.

For some reason I'm feeling down now very depressed and antsy==is that normal after you've completed a big project and have pushed yourself to get it done? I still have all the finishing and braiding to go on this so it's not completely finished, just the 2-3nd stages with the 1st designing and laying it out, then dyeing and picking colors for it before starting the hooking. The the other stages are doing the binding of the edges, getting the strips ready for braiding, initial braided strip around the rug, attaching the braiding, doing some more of the braiding to what size I want it or run out of fabriccs, and finishing it completely. Lots of work still to go but I feel this rug really needs a border or frame around it otherwise I wouldn't bother with all this. Am I nuts?

Here are some of the fabrics going into the braiding.

I haven't figure out my sequence of colors yet. Going to stare at them awhile until it comes to me. I've got 2 more batches of fabrics to put in the dye pots and marry. I got about 11 pieces of clothing, many jackets, but a couple of women's jacket and skirt combos and a pale green blanket yesterday at His House up the street. All but 5 pieces are going into the pots. The other 5 are a set of purple and a set of royal blue and a nice light blue plaid skirt to go in other projects. The new batch I cut up last night is mainly tans, browns and a black. I needed out after being in for almost 2 weeks and went to the library in Lexington to take out the Sturges book on braiding and the Rag Rug books. I'll be glad when I can afford to buy them all.

That's the WM leftovers in all three bags


Leftovers. I've got a bunch of them. I've been mentally trying to figure out whether any of them will go in other projects started or planned. The biggest chunk of colors are the greens from the dragons and the greenery and the gray, tan, browns used for the landscape with a small Walmart bag left of sky colors but mainly on the lavender gray sides, most of azure and light sky blue colors got used up. I have been thinking of doing a cat's paw or undoing the cottons from the one I started that I had initally started in acrylic yarns. Though I think the gauge on it it more suited to 6's or 4's than leftover 8's though I could be wrong. It's another piece I could enlarge with braiding. Maybe with the leftovers I can make a rug that my kids will actually use and not be afraid to walk on.

I've been getting a lot of ideas for braiding designs and experiments. I keep seeing braided animals shapes or maybe a dinosaur shapes rug with braiding connecting different animals. I still see a primitive barnyard style dino rug for kids. There'a wonderful braided rug I saw on the Thorndyke rugs site that swirls out from the center I want to try doing eventually. I see all kinds of shapes other than ovals, rounds, squares and rectangles with the braiding and want to try multiple strands too to try to get close to Delsie Hoyt's work at Kingdom Moon rugs.

I've been thinking about entering this in a show. Don't know whether it would stand a chance as I still have a lot to learn on the hooking and my loops, etc. are not perfect or even. Maybe design wise it's be okay but technique and probably my finishing would take off lots of points. I did think of entering it in a fiber show for all kinds of fiber art work but the deadline is July 1st and there's no way I can get it braided by then. Anyone know of any rug shows I could send it to and not have to attend? That's the only way it'd get seen or have someone else take it to shows as car, and money wise I won't be able to go anywhere for a long time.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Walk Me Update

Here are the latest updates on Walk Me.

Sky section

Full view of rug. It looks almost like he's looking at a bubble or something.

Half view closeup of it. I got all the undone places done after I took this pic.

Section I'm working on now

The circle area is where it is.

Once this big section is done then I will have the space between the mountain side and the dragon to fill in and to even up the sides and edges before the big project of rug braiding begins.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Walk Me and Braiding

I'm slowly moving along on Walk Me. This is just the top left section. I at least have the tower done, some of the mountains and am working on the sky. Decided it needed more dragons. I was just told my daughter had something come up and can't go shopping with me so I get some more time working on this today and will hopefully get the rest of the sky done this afternoon.

Been getting lots done on the braiding though. I hope I can get this flattened out more as it gets bigger. I like the braiding part, it's all the hand sewing that is slow going. You can see the progression of the rings. Once I have 2 more rows of the white done then it's getting a pink and lavender ring with four points coming up off of it in between the four points now. I'm going for a kind of star or sun pattern with this.

I'm making myself concentrate on these 2 projects alone to get them finished. Though more on the Walk Me rug. Then it will get the braided border which I am still gathering fabrics for. After that I promise to get some work done on GM and Famoly rugs. Time seems to be slipping away from me so fast now. I know I've got until October 10th but I don't feel like I will have that much done by then to have a decent dispaly. I'm stuck inside for awhile because of the heat and the kids being at home which doesn't help my mood. I miss my greenery, my dog, and the peace and quiet over there but as always I make do. I do have a bunch of canvases to do I created but haven't felt like looking at them and doing color planning on them. Too tempting to start a new one before the older ones are finished and I do have to get these finished and out of the way first. I'm determined to stick to that.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

I'm Back at the shop

One of my backyard vistors. Anyone know what kind of bug this is? It was about 3 inches long and flew.

My 'Vacation' is over and I'm back home again for awhile. Really going to miss the backyard, my dog, the birds, squirrels, butterflies, peace and quiet, and no internet. I've made lots of progress on Walk Me and have been getting lots done a day as I'm able to work 12-16 hours on projects with no interruptions, as well as think about future project ideas. Too many people, distractions and interruptions here most days. My room here is sort of windowless and is lit with fluorescence lights. Always feel so restricted and claustrophobic in here--miss my wall of greenery, the birds and butterflies--even as a kid I'd rather be outside than in. My squash, tomatoes, eggplant and peppers all have blooms and are developing fruits, Moved my grape bushes to where they'll get more sun, and shifted some of the containers around, but didn't do as much gardening as I did last week, I just wasn't feeling that good this week and did more sitting and working.

I've made lots of progress on Walk Me. I've actually made more than the photos show. This was taken on Sunday, and I've now got the castle up to the top roof done, and all the landscape next to the dragon to the edge and up to the mountains filled in. Still have the sky, the roof and mountains to go on the left side. I'll try to get a decent picture shot tomorrow.

First braided rug finished and have started on the second rug in shades of lavender, pinks, light and dark blues, and creams. I started out doing this as a round up I've added four bands coming up out of a round so this will have more shape to it. I'm calling this one Aurora's rug. Which it may end up going to her eventually. I have some fabrics already picked out for one to do for Autumn in fall colors. In my head I have several more rugs planned and am going to try braiding in shapes like a pig, or cat or even a mouse or sheep.

More progress on the Folk Angel too.

I've added a link to a new rug hooking site Red Jack Rugs by the very talented April DeConick in Houston TX Please check out her site and rugs.