My friend Susan Sylvia at Ram in the Thicket, who I buy a lot of my hand dyed wool from, thought it would be a great idea to document my adventure of learning to hook rugs. It never occurred to me that anyone would be interested in seeing this even though I would love watching someone else's progress. I haven't started the actual hooking yet but there is a process to getting ready to hook, just like any other craft.
Hopewood Crafts and I LOVE it! (This is their picture by the way, not mine) I do a lot of researching before I jump into a purchase I know nothing about and this one had everything I needed. A floor frame with adjustable height and swivels 360 degrees. I read these are very important features. I wanted one that looked like my hand would easily go to the underside without hitting anything and I wanted it to be sturdy.
I looked at one rug hooking sight after another trying to find the right design for my rug. It's funny because in my mind it was like I thought it was the only rug I was ever going to make. Then one day I realized that I will be making many rugs, just like I have made hundreds of quilts. Realizing this helped but I still wanted it to be the perfect rug after all wool isn't cheap you know. I decided to design a rug that would compliment the quilt I am appliqueing out of wool.
After studying rug after rug I also realized that I would want a black background instead of the camel color I originally thought I would use. I had to move my thinking from quilt mode to rug mode. I felt that the black or dark background grounds the rug more. Some might think it is a clean factor but in my bedroom where the rug will be going won't get much dirt, so it was all a design decision. Since I didn't have much black wool in my stash that was the next move. Ordering and buying more black in a variety of shades.
This was the initial drawing of my rug. I do have a border added and I have tweaked it some. I was quite interested in reading that so many designers draw their designs small and simply enlarge them. Cindi Gay describes how to enlarge your design on your PC rather than having to go to a copy store. I was so amazed at how easy this was to do. I didn't even know my computer had this feature! When I had my finished drawing I scanned it. and enlarged it to 275% which came out perfect. 16 sheets of paper taped together and I have a life size drawing! If you click on her name it will take you right to the page on her blog where she tells how to do it. Her blog is very interesting as well and she is so helpful.
So, I have my hook, Scottish Linen for backing, a design, a frame, a fabric cutter, ambition, and desire. Next step will be washing some of the wool I bought to felt it, and getting my linen ready with the design.