Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Margaret and Her Magic Tricks

Peconic Ruggers guild member Margaret Tripp-Zenk brought three newly finished rugs to our meeting last week.  Margaret is a remarkably fast rug maker -- faster than me, and I am pretty fast and do this for a living. And she has a full time job and kids in school and all that stuff.  I'm beginning to think she never sleeps . . .  or  maybe she has a magic wand, or a band of elves held captive in her closet.

Margaret is not only fast, she is also very creative, trying new stuff all the time.  Take the bird rug pictured above. (My apologies for the burry and bad photos.)  She dyed the background with pennies!  The wool has this great mottled green patina color that gives a lot of movement to her background.  She set a jar of pennies (older pennies that have a high copper content) and water outside and let them sit for awhile, then dyed the wool in the water.  Pretty neat idea, I think.  She also used the wool in the flowers of this little floral.

In the chicken rug above, Margaret mixed several red plaids together to create her border, which makes this rather simple rug sparkle (although you can't tell from the terrible photograph.) She is an inveterate thrift store shopper, finding all sorts of interesting wools to use in her rugs.  I imagine that's where she found all the plaids in her border.

Margaret really is fast --she will probably have six more rugs hooked by our next meeting, lol.  I'll take better photos next time . . .

I'm still dealing with a sick dog -- poor Cairo not only has pancreatitis, but he also has a collapsed trachea.  He was coughing endlessly, sounding like a goose with a cold.  It's awful.  The poor little guy was miserable.  He had a shot of steroids and is on antibiotics and prescription cough medicine.  That has helped, but he is just about through the medicine and I don't know what will happen when he's finished.  Sometimes the trachea will repair itself, but sometimes it doesn't.  At 12 and half years old, we are not sure surgery is the right course for Cairo.  It is a great weight on my shoulders right now.  We return to the vet yet again tomorrow and we'll take a new look at the situation.

Despite Cairo's health issues, I've been enjoying the week of wonderful summer weather.  I've been working a bit in the garden and getting some house projects finished.  I've been a little neglectful with blogging and answering emails, but I'm planning on being better.  Hope you are all enjoying summer.

Friday, June 20, 2014

What Happens When You Have Way Too Much Wool

In my effort to clean my studio. I piled one too many bolts of wool on top of my grid boxes and the whole middle portion came tumbling down.  That was two days ago.  I haven't made much progress since.  Today's the day I tackle it -- and the rest of the room, too.

Summer is really here.  We had several days of rain and really high humidity and heat.  Today is gorgeous.  Pete and I are going to transform our driveway and side walkway this weekend -- we hope.  July 4th is our deadline for several projects -- some of which are completed already.  Clara is coming home with her boyfriend and our friends from Amherst will be joining us, too.  We plan to spend the whole weekend swimming and clamming and fishing and eating, so Pete and I want to be ready to relax.

Barb and I had a less than stellar showing at the quilt show two weeks ago.  I think there were far fewer  attendees and they were mostly interested in Star Wars fabric and making quilts for their grandsons.  I did set up another rug hooking class at Farmhouse Quilts in Southold, though, which made the whole weekend worth it.  The class will be held on Saturday, August 9.  We'll be hooking a sunflower.  Contact Janet at 631-236-6030 if you are interested.  We're hoping to set up a regular schedule of rug hooking classes at Farmhouse.

I'm thinking we may take the first swim of the season today.  The bay is so inviting.  Perhaps that will be my reward for cleaning up the studio . . . . 

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Little Lulu Left Home

I finally finished the Welsh Terrier pillow and mailed it off to New Mexico today.  It is not the same piece I posted last time.  I sent an-in process photo of the mat to the person who ordered it and she wanted me to make the dog's coat more brown than orange and more grizzled than black.  Rather than ripping out what looked to me like a perfectly good terrier, I opted to start over.  I think both are successful rugs, but I prefer the first one, with its sharper contrast, better.  I used artistic license to make my color choices.  The colors in the border are bold and the dog had to be able to stand up to them.  I explained to my customer that rug hooking is folk art, not photography, and certainly my rug designs are pretty simple.  Anyway, I hope she is pleased.  Just after I pulled the last loop on Lulu, someone emailed me and asked if I would hook a West Highland terrier . . .   I guess my business has gone to the dogs . . . .

I am getting ready to vend at the Eastern Long Island Quilt Guild Show this weekend.  If you are in the neighborhood, come join us.  There's a native plant sale going on at the same time, so you can kill two birds with one stone.  Here's the scoop:

“Around the World in 80 Quilts”

ELIQG 33rd Annual Peconic Quilt Show, June 7 & 8, 2014

Hours: Saturday, 9 AM – 5 PM & Sunday, 10 AM – 4 PM

Suffolk Community College, 121 Speonk-Riverhead Road, Riverhead, NY

Admission: $10, children under 12 free, 2 days $18