Prairie Harvest Rug Hooking School Comments from the Registrar: Spring 2012 Edition

Prairie Harvest Rug Hooking School
Spring 2012 Edition
Comments from the Registrar:
With spring just beginning here on the prairies, it feels somewhat strange to be eagerly anticipating and
planning for the fall when once again we will gather for the enriching experience of attending the rug
school. I am excited about learning something I have never tried before- punch hooking. It brings back
memories of attending my first Prairie Harvest Rug Hooking School eleven years ago. At that time, I
had only seen hooked rugs on one occasion; I had never held a hook or pulled a loop, and yet I knew it
was something that I needed to explore. I drove 1300 kilometers by myself, not knowing a single person,
to attend the school at Fort Qu’Appelle. I have attended every school since and enjoyed them all. I feel
so comfortable with the people I’ve met through the school- they are welcoming, funny, giving and creative- just the kind of people one enjoys being with.
No matter if this is your first school or twelfth, whether you come alone or with friends, whether you are
a beginning or experienced hooker… there is a promise of new learning and enjoyable fellowship awaiting you at PHRHS.
See you in September.
Rita Smith
Editor’s corner:
Well the time has come that I put together my last newsletter. I will miss this job but I am ready to tackle new challenges and after 9.5 years and 19 newsletters it is time to allow someone else the opportunity
to prepare the school newsletter. I would encourage anyone with computer skills who is looking for a
way to give back to the school to consider this job. You will learn a lot, met new people, and have a
chance to apply your creative ideas to putting together a newsletter that will keep our members informed
and educated in all areas of rug hooking. I will still see you at the school and perhaps in a few years, if
my time permits, I will have the pleasure of teaching a workshop on the joys of fine shading!
All the best as you continue on your rug hooking journey.
Heather Fox
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School News
The 2012 school will be held from September 15-20, 2012 at Cedar Lodge Hotel and Convention Centre, 40 km south of Saskatoon, SK.
2012 Available Classes
There are a few openings in all classes. It is not too late to register and there is no late fee.
Wide Cut - Open
Who Let the Dogs Out? Hooking Unleashed
A Design and Composition class
Laughing on the Outside, Dyeing on the Inside
A Dye and Apply workshop
First Nations Art/Emily Carr
Pictorials With Punch
Find It and Finish It
Iris Simpson
Tanya Graham
Cec Caswell
Wendy Halsall
Sara Judith
Please contact Rita for a complete class description. [email protected] or 306-997-2121
Volunteers Needed:
New Directors are needed for 2012-2013. A step-by-step checklist has been created and will be available to those who take on the job. The past Directors and Saskatoon members will also be available to
provide support during the transition and can be on-site as needed. We need your help in order for our
school to continue, so please volunteer your time and ideas.
Newsletter Editor
The school is looking for a newsletter editor to start at the Fall 2012 school. It is helpful if you can
come to the school but not necessary. Putting the newsletter together takes approximately 8.0 hours
twice a year. It is a great way to meet people in the rug hooking community and you learn a lot. You
should be comfortable working on a computer, have an email account, and be able to use tools such as
Microsoft Word. Additional software such as Cutepdf and a screen capture tool such as Snagit are also
required and can be downloaded for free from the internet. The work for the newsletter could easily be
shared between two people. If you have any questions, please contact Heather at
[email protected]
Vendors Welcome:
PHRHS would like to encourage vendors to attend the school. We have a willing group of approximately 65 rug hookers who like to purchase wool and rug hooking related supplies. There is no additional
charge to vendors as the school rents the whole facility. Please contact Rita Smith at 306-997-2121 or
[email protected] if you would be interested in attending as a vendor.
Frames for Rent:
Leslie's Frame’s will rent frames to those unable to transport a frame to the school. Please contact Leslie
to make arrangements before the school at [email protected]
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Mark the Date
The date of the 2013 school has been set.....September 15-20. The 2013 school will begin on a Sunday,
as requested by membership at the AGM. (The starting dates will alternate with a Saturday start for even
numbered years and a Sunday start for odd numbered years.) The 2013 school date has been especially
chosen so that it will not conflict with the ATHA Biennial in Long Beach, California (September 25-28,
Financial Statement
Please be advised that a motion will be presented at the annual general meeting in September to move
the PHRHS financial year-end to December 31st. Any member not attending the school can register
their vote by email to Betty Ann Baron at [email protected]
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Grain Elevators: Vanishing Prairie Landmarks
Rita Smith
The exhibit featuring rugs depicting grain elevators continues to make the rounds of galleries in Alberta.
There was wonderful press coverage in Calgary, with news reports on Global and CBC television and a
large article with photos in the Calgary Herald. The Calgary guild provided demonstrations. There were
several offers to purchase that resulted from the Calgary exhibition. Thank you, Sharon Johnston, for
your work in coordinating the Calgary show.
Holly Kingdon coordinated the shows in Okotoks and High River, including hands-on experience for
adults and children. Thanks, Holly, and thanks also for repairing loose ends between shows. The exhibit
is scheduled for Rocky Mountain House, King School near Camrose and Humboldt, SK in 2012. Then
it is off to Manitoba in 2013. Shows have been confirmed for McCreary, Neepawa, Carman, Holland
and Portage La Prairie.
The exhibit generates very positive comments from viewers and certainly has been successful in exposing many people to this art form.
Where to next?
Here is a partial list of where you can see the exhibit:
High River Centennial Library, High River, AB
Kingman Regional School near Camrose, AB
Rocky Museum, Rocky Mountain House, AB
Humboldt Museum and Gallery, Humboldt, SK
May 2012
August 1- September 30, 2012
Nov/Dec 2012
Membership Information:
Membership is $10.00 per year and is valid from October 2011 through September 2012. Membership includes
the following benefits:
• Eligibility to attend the annual school
• An annual financial statement
• A membership list – find rug hookers in your area
• The semi-annual newsletter
To become a member or to renew you membership, please make your cheque payable to:
Prairie Harvest Rug Hooking School Association (or PHRHS Association) c/o Box 82, Borden, SK S0K 0N0
For additional information, contact Rita Smith at 306-997-2121 or [email protected]
****Note: Membership for the 2012-2013 year has been set at $20
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Hooking Geometrics Rugs
Holly Kingdon
Hooking a geometric rug can be a practice in the absolute joy of
hooking! They are fantastic rugs for you to devote your whole
attention. They can be great to have as an ongoing project, to take
a break from a particularly challenging piece or even to fall back
to in between other projects. Don’t get me wrong, there are many
challenges to face, and new techniques to learn while working on
that geometric masterpiece – techniques you can carry over into
all of your hooking. However, many of those new challenges are
faced before you actually start hooking, leaving you able to just
sit back and relax and enjoy your project.
Yes, you did read that correctly, many challenges are faced before you start. In other words: Plan, plan,
plan. Geometric rugs require pre-planning as much, or in some ways, more than any other kind of rug
design. You will avoid many pitfalls by planning ahead of time, especially for colour. For example,
you’ve decided to hook an inch mat to use up your stash (which is a great way to do it). You’ve drawn
your pattern, pulled out your leftover strips and set to work, starting at one corner working down to the
other. What happens when you get to the end of your mat and all you have left is green? Blue green,
olive green, grass green……so much for using up your stash! Off to the dye pot you go to fill in the
gaps, either that, or you’re pulling out your strips and filling in after the fact. If you had planned ahead,
those greens could have been used throughout the mat, and your other colours mixed in.
Colour planning your rug before you start will also help to ensure you have enough value change in your
mat. Your motifs can easily be lost by not having enough change in value to your background or the
motif next to it. You may have to change to a darker value for your motif or background, or perhaps
even outline your motif. Leaving your background and motif close in value, but outlining the motif in a
much lighter or darker value can often have a beautiful effect in a rug. You may also want to consider
hooking your motifs at different heights, which can add a wonderful 3D effect.
Planning what cut you want to use is also a great way to avoid problems in hooking a geometric pattern.
You may have your heart set on using an 8 cut, but an 8 cut may not be suitable to the motif. Try it out
– hook a small portion of your design, perhaps the motif you anticipate will be the most challenging.
Now, take some time to assess. Do the strips fit comfortably within your motif? Do they crowd? Do
they leave too much space between the strips? You may find you have to move up or down a cut size.
Have an open mind. An 8 cut may fit well into your squares, while a 6 cut works better in your circles.
You can switch your cut size as needed for different aspects of your design. Use caution in this, however, as jumping too many cut sizes will give your loops a much different look. A 3 cut “blooms” much
differently than an 8 for example. Also, remember to always pull your loops to the same height.
One of the biggest challenges in hooking a geometric rug is simply - What design do you hook? Geometric designs encompass a vast variety of designs and motifs. Any repeating shape, arranged in a way
as to not recreate something in real life, qualifies as geometric design. (Think circles, squares, triangles,
waves…) Thinking along this line will lead to a wonderful array of traditional patterns, utilizing many
different shapes such as a traditional inch mat or quilting pattern. It will even lead you to more modern
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abstract designs that will highlight your decor. If you choose, however, geometric design can be greatly
expanded to include geometric shapes that have been turned into stylized real life objects.
Traditional geometric designs are a wonderful source for hooked mats. They are excellent designs to
stand on their own, or can be used in other instances (such as a background or border) to bring elements
of a rug together. They most often use a repetitive motif. There are
many sources of inspiration for a traditional geometric. One need
only look to that beloved quilt covering your bed, or comfy cushion
on your couch to draw a wonderful pattern from. Depending on the
colour choices you use, traditional patterns can look quite primitive
to very modern in appearance. The piece on the right, designed and
hooked by Lise Merchant, is an excellent example of a traditional
design which has a very modern effect
through the use of colour and colour placement.
Abstract geometric designs take traditional geometric motifs, but arrange them
in a non-traditional, not repetitive fashion. The piece on the left, also designed
and hooked by Lise Merchant, is an example of taking traditional geometric
elements and arranging them in a very modern, abstract design.
Many artists, such as Piet Mondrian, can be excellent sources for an abstract
geometric design (get permission first, of course). Or, you could simply play
with various cut out shapes and lines until you come up with a pleasing design. Try taking unusual
shapes from your favourite room (such as the shape of the vase on the shelf or the shape of the lid of the
salt shaker) and arrange them in a design that will be uniquely you!
A really fun way of coming up with a geometric design to hook is to manipulate shapes into a tessellation. A tessellation is a shape that fits together on itself to leave no background showing such as a
square or an equilateral triangle. These shapes can be manipulated into other non-traditional shapes
which will also tessellate. Funky Flamingoes at the top of this article is an example of a tessellated
shape which has been taken to the next step and turned into a stylized version of a living thing.
The flamingoes in Funky Flamingoes, designed and hooked by Holly Kingdon, started out as a rectangle. Through manipulation and imagination they turned into flamingoes with their heads curled back by
their bodies. They were then tessellated to become a series of flamingoes standing in the water. Check
out artist M.C. Escher for other fabulous examples of tessellated art!
Hooking a geometric mat offers a wealth of possibilities. Once you’ve narrowed down your choice of
pattern, and done your planning to work out the challenges, just sit back, relax and enjoy!
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Fall 2011 School pictures:
If I have put the wrong name against a rug, please let me know (Ed.)
Evelyn Johnson
Donna Godfrey
Val Jackson
Wendy Toye
Dorothy Oltsher
Gloria Dressler
Arlette Spencer
Betty Ann Baron
Shirley Davis
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Meet Evelyn Johnson:
Before retiring, Evelyn worked for the Estivan Arts Council where she was
tasked with looking for people who practiced some of the old time arts and
crafts. She heard about the Regina rug hooking group and got in touch
with Doris Fulmore (one of the founders of both our school and education
association. Ed). Doris taught a class to the arts council members and
Evelyn has been hooking ever since. .
Evelyn has been hooking for 10 years now and this is her seventh year at
the school. Her favourite style is to design pictorials and hook the rug in a
cut appropriate to the piece. She has currently completed four rugs and two
wall hangings and one rug featuring a hen which she hooked for her great
granddaughter who is 10 years old.
Her favourite rug is called ‘My Story’ (see School Pictures..ed). The rug
represents her parents homesteaded in 1931. Her parents cut down the
trees to build the house and barns. Her dad is milking the cow and her
brothers (now in their 80’s) are standing around the grinding stone and her
mom, sisters, and herself are picking raspberries. She finished the rug in
time for a family reunion.
She signed up for Laurie’s Hooking Expanded workshop so that she could experiment with alternate fibres. She chose an abstract style to work with in the class. Evelyn would like to encourage you to create your own designs. It is easier than you think especially if you pick a subject that is meaningful to
Buy and Sell:
If you have something to buy or sell, send the editor the information and it will be published in this section.
Expert restorations of hooked rugs by Angela Possak. Angela is a rug hooker with over 30 years of experience. She can be contacted at or by phone: (250) 767-0206
Blogs and Social Networking Sites
The Heritage Rug Hookers of Saskatoon have put together a blog. Go to to
find out what is happening with the rug hooking scene in Saskatoon.
Wanda Kerr has put together an excellent social networking site for rug hookers. Wanda charges a yearly fee of $20. To become a member you go to Wanda’s web site, select ‘Welcome
Mat’, and click on ‘Click here for an Invitation’.
Another social networking site for rug hookers is the ‘Rug Hooking Daily’ created by Heidi Wulfraat.
Just follow the Sign-Up link on the Main Page to become a member.
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Canadian Rug Hooking Education Association (WCRHEA)
If you would like to become a member of the WCRHEA, please contact Sara Judith for an application
form [email protected] or 250-352-5218. Membership dues are currently set at $10.00 per year
and the year starts September 1st. If you are a member of the association and would like a copy of the
by-laws or a copy of the teacher accreditation program, please contact Heather Fox at
[email protected] or 250-358-2680. Student teachers must become members of the association.
Teachers Listing
Western Canada Rug Hooking Education Association (WCRHEA)
Sara Judith
Doris Fulmore and Flora Hamilton, founders of PHRHS, turned their attention to fulfilling Doris’ dream to start a program to certify rug hooking teachers in Western Canada. Existing teachers had
been trained in Nova Scotia or Ontario, or had pursued McGown certification in the US but there was no
means for training and certifying new and aspiring teachers in the Western provinces. The Western Canadian Rug Hooking Education Association was created in 2006 to do just that. The organization has
grown and now includes members from all of the Western provinces as well as the Yukon. A very successful five day Education: Principles and Practices training session was held by Tanya Graham in September 2010. This was the last requirement for several women and they became the first five graduates
of the program. Two more teachers fulfilled all the requirements, including workshops and completed
rugs, this past fall. The program is now structured to emphasize teaching skills and has potential teachers
fulfilling most hooking requirements prior to starting the program. A professional development program
has also been established enabling teachers to receive credit and acknowledgement for exploring specialization in at least one area of hooking. In 2012, there will be the first Teachers Conference; convening a few days prior to the Prairie Harvest Rug Hooking School. The conference will allow teachers to
network, share, and improve their teaching skills.
WCRHEA is a success stories, and will continue to help the rug hooking community in Western
Canada grow and learn. If you would like more information please feel free to contact and Heather Fox
[email protected]
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Drawing a 5-Point Star
Val Jackson
Excerpt from Wikipedia (
A five-pointed star (☆) is a very common ideogram throughout the world. If the colinear edges are joined together a pentagram is produced, which is the simplest of the unicursal star
polygons, and a symbol of mystical and magical significance.
The five pointed star has many uses and can be modified to
create the following design elements.
Calendar 2012:
Feb 1
Registration forms will be mailed
Sept 1
March 1
First day to postmark registration
for the school
Deadline for newsletter submissions
Sept 15
Last date to request transportation from the
First day of school
Nov 1
Deadline for newsletter submissions
April 1
May 1
Spring edition of the newsletter and
class placements
Late Nov Fall edition of the newsletter mailed
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Rug Hooking Tips:
Thanks to everyone who provided tips for use in the newsletters.
Jayne Nevin’s
Place your cutter in another room. It makes you get up from your hooking and move
class 2011
Laurie Wiles
You can draw a straight line on your backing by placing your pen and pressing down
and pulling at the same time. The mark will follow the straight of the fiber of the
backing. Works well for geometrics or grids
Marlene Bartlett
Marlene Bartlett
Selvedges can be used in your hooking
To ensure you have enough background wool to hook all of the background, divide
your background wool into four piles. Hook the first quarter of your background. If
you had enough wool, you will be able to complete all of the background without running out. This technique would work for hooking a border as well.
Faye Swenson
Run a dryer sheet through your cutter to pick up the lint
Laurie Wiles
When finishing your edge with fabric strips, use your hook (rather than a darning needle). A primitive hook works well
Barb Kennedy
Pull out articles from magazines, put the articles in page protectors and then into a
binder. Recycle the rest of the magazine. Organize the articles according to subject or
themes if wanted.
Jayne Nevin’s
class 2011
To separate measuring cups that are stuck together, place cups in the freezer
Provided by Anabelle Ciemiewicz
Zippy Eggs
6 slices bacon
2-3 eggs
plastic zip lock baggies
How to Prepare: First brown the bacon until crispy, remove from the frying pan and crumble the bacon
into little pieces and put in a sandwich bag. Whisk the eggs in a bowl and then place in baggy with the
bacon. Add your salt and pepper and your butter, zip the freezer bag or sandwich bag and put into boiling hot water until done.
Things to note:
• Make sure the zip bags are FREEZER style and quart size.
• If eggs are being prepared for different people, put each person’s name on the bag with a marker
so that you know who's who.
• Don't put in tomatoes or wet vegetables as the eggs will get watery.
• We use 2 eggs per bag.
• A large pot will hold 5-6 bags and with that many cook about 13-15 minutes.
• Also make sure to get most of the air out of the bag.
• We also mix the eggs right in the bag.
From :
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Rug Hooking Groups:
Red River Ruggers. First Saturday of the month in Winnipeg (St Vital area) from 10 am to 4 pm. (Sept we meet the 2nd
Sat). No regular meetings in July and August. Contact: Judy Trefry: [email protected] or 204-268-5343
Beausejour Group. Third Saturday of the month in Beausejour from 10 am to 4 pm. Second Monday of the month in
Beausejour from 6:30 pm to 9:30 pm. Contact: Judy Trefry [email protected] or 204-268-5343
Heritage Rug Hookers of Saskatoon gather at the Sherbrooke Community Centre on Acadia and 14th. They meet on the 2nd
and 4th Tuesday as well as once a month on a Saturday for a hook-in. For more information, contact Heather Norquay, 306664-6198, heather.norquay[email protected]
The Creative Rug Hooking Guild meets at St Marks Church, 3510 Queen St., Regina. The meeting time is from 1:30 to 3:30
every Wednesday from September 10th to May 13th 2009. There will be no meetings in December. For more information,
contact Jan Hague 306-359-3210 or [email protected]
Good Spirited Rug Hookers. We meet every other Monday 7-9 pm, call Renee Langan at 306-563-4846
The Calgary hooking group: meets Tuesdays from 7:00-9:00pm. They do hands on and one-on-one lessons and occasionally
they will do a dye session. Contact Marlene Bartlett 403-246-4070
Calgary Handycrafts Guild Rug Group: meets Tuesdays from 9:00am to 5:00pm at the Sprucecliff Community Centre. Contact Maureen Benning at 403-243-9510 for more information
The Edmonton Rug Hooking group meets the 1st Thursday evening of every month (except July and August) at the
Pleasantview Community League. Contact Laurie Wiles 780-451-5234
Rocky Mountain House
The ‘Hot Off the Hook’ rug hooking club meets Tuesdays from 2:00 – 9:00pm. The first Tuesday of every month is salad
night. Beginners and experienced hookers welcome. Contact Lynn Roth 403-845-3689
British Columbia
Vancouver Island
Chemainus: Lynne Smith [email protected]
Nanaimo/Nanoose: Dogwood Rug Hookers contact Shirley Burns at [email protected]
Victoria: Monday Hook-ups, contact Michaele Freeman, [email protected] or 250.595.6302
Salt Spring Island
Sandy English at [email protected]
Lower Mainland
Chilliwack: Tuesday Matters Rug Hookers contact Betty Lou Carver (604) 824-4095
Maple Ridge: Maple Ridge Gone Hooking meets each Wed from 10.30am-3.30pm. Beginner’s lessons with supplies available. For more info contact Freda at (604) 463-0043 or [email protected]
Vancouver: contact Michelle Sirois-Silver at [email protected]
Other areas
Kelowna: For information on when and where the Kelowna Traditional Rughookers meet, please contact Jean Anderson at
[email protected] or (250) 763-3914
South Central British Columbia: contact Angela Possak (250) 767-0206
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Rug Hooking Suppliers in Western Canada
Big Dog Hooked Rug Designs:
Wide cut and primitive hooked rug patterns and
workshops. Studio visits by appointment only.
Michelle Sirois-Silver
1937 3rd Ave E.
Vancouver, BC
V5N 1H4
Tel: 604-816-0731
Email: [email protected]
Rug Hooking , Quilting and Needlework 360 0 and
tilting gripper frames and hoops in different sizes
and styles. Made from Canadian hardwoods. Lifetime guarantee.
NEW! Hooks - #3 to primitive, plain to exotic
Full spectrum natural light lamps with and without
Blue Heron Rug Hooking Studio
375 Sunset Ave.,
Victoria B.C., V8S4L3;
On Vancouver Island
I am offering my own PATTERNS, KITS and RUGS
To view, please visit my website at
Email [email protected]
The studio is open by appointment only.
Colleen Wike
Box 398
Chemainus, BC V0R 1K0
Leslie Cuthbertson
321 Summerwood Place
Airdrie, AB T4B 1W4
(403)651-6568 cell
email: [email protected]
Hidden Paradise Rug Hooking Studio
Box 11 Group 407 RR4
Beausejour, MB, R0E 0C0
[email protected]
supplies, lessons, dying
hooking time, mail order
find it & finish it. Collect 5- 10 people
together and arrange an introductory
Cutter Maintenance: Chris Poole, RR # 2, 708333, Lisle, On. L0M 1M0. Phone # 1-705-466-5046. He sharpens
scissors, blades for Fraser and Bliss cutters and does any necessary repairs for both Fraser and Bliss. He can convert the old Fraser 500 to accept the new parts.
Editor contact information:
Heather Fox P.O. Box 213
New Denver, B.C. V0G 1S0
[email protected]
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