Hooking

 I started hooking five years ago when I saw a hoop in a shop in Nova Scotia and asked the clerk what it was used for. She said "rug hooking"  My first lessons in rug hooking were with Lynn Denny and when she showed me how to create a cloud with the flow of her hand, I was hooked. I had just moved to Nova Scotia for the winter and wanted a new hobby and a way to meet new people. I was lucky on both counts and found a new way to use yarn and make my own designs from my paintings. Many Canadian hookers use yarn verses wool strips and early in my rug hooking career, I used both in my rugs. After my first mat was completed, I came back to Maine and began taking classes with Diane. I love using lots of textures and colors and Diane encouraged me to find my own voice when making a rug. She helped me fine tune my ideas for these mats. My history with color and texture has been with my 60 years of knitting for family, friends and my shop. Pine Tree Yarns in Damariscotta has allowed me to pursue my love of knitting and to help customers create their own original designs. When I started to hook, I was knitting a Van Gogh "Sunflowers" sweater. Each row had 12 shades of orange, gold and red and I was ending up with a tangled mess of yarn. I unraveled the project and used the yarn for my hooking project instead. It is much easier and more fun to play with lots of color on a piece of linen. The two pieces in this show are using wool strips, not yarn, Diane helped me to be use line and color expressively in these rugs. Ellen Sullivan, a Nova Scotian rug hooker and folk artist, inspired me to learn to hook. Looking at her primitive rugs gave me the courage to draw my paintings onto linen and then proceed to select a colorful palette to hook. Ellen used old rags given to her by friends and neighbors. She drew scenes using nature, animals and people which were part of her life. My next rug, "A pine tree with birds", is dedicated to Ellen and her 72 years of hooking.