Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Back to rug hooking

The garden isn't finished for the year yet. Far from it, really. DH has lettuce, spinach, swiss chard, radishes, turnips, green cabbage, and more beets coming along nicely. He picked a dishpan of green beans this morning and the tomatoes are still producing so we'll be putting up salsa tomorrow and again at the weekend, I expect. But things have slowed down enough that I can start thinking about other projects again.

So after going to a not-to-be-missed semi-annual church rummage sale last weekend, I have several pieces of 100% wool clothing ready to be ripped apart at the seams. To be honest, I hate this part and not just because it can be tedious work. The clothes are often in good condition and it seems a shame to tear them up but then I remember that this is an excellent way to recycle styles that no one wanted. The church runs a community clothes closet and the money from the rummage sale supports that effort. More importantly for my conscience, however, is the fact that the clothes were passed over by the folks who make use of the clothes closet. Makes me feel less guilty for cutting them into strips. The weekend's haul was especially nice as I found woolens in colors besides the more typical grey, black, and tan. I can always overdye if I need a special color but I love having ready-to-use strips, too. It's like having a box of beautiful yarns -- so much fun to look at and the design ideas really start to flow when I look at them all.

One project I'm ready to tackle this fall will be a panel for the top of a footstool. It's about 18x24-inches and could use an overhaul. I recovered it over 15 years ago but Holly-dog has since managed to chew all four corners. And just the other day, DS went to move it and said something poked him along one side. Yep, that would be the heavy-duty staples I used to secure the seam... Time to reupholster. I haven't decided on a design yet but I really want to include a bit of the lovely lavender I found at the rummage sale. For some reason I keep coming back to a tropical fish drawing DS made for the county fair several years ago. May have to adapt it for this project.

Sage House Studio's Rug Hooking Tips and Techniques page gives a quick overview of preparing wool for hooking as well as tips on dyeing. The site is also loaded with cute patterns and pictures of finished rugs, door and window toppers, and pillows.