Tuesday, January 18, 2011

For Hookers Only

I was first introduced to 'hooking' as a very young boy. You see, my grandmother lived with us for most of my childhood and she was a 'hooker'.

I better set things straight.......my grandmother hooked rugs! Of course you all knew I was just playin' with ya!

Nana learned to 'hook' when she had to do so, to make money for her young family of four kids (my Mom included). She continued this craft up into her seventies.

Her 'rugs' were made from any material she could find.....cotton, polyester, wool. She would cut it into long strips of varying lengths, get out her frame and attach a burlap base, then draw her design by hand  onto the burlap.......and away she'd go!

She would use a hooked instrument that fit into the palm of your hand. She would hold it on top with one hand and with the other hand she would hold the strip of material. Then she would pull the material up through the burlap to a certain height and then as quick as she pulled the material up, she would poke the hook back through the cloth and pick up another loop.

Confused? Just picture a bunch of little 'loops' all over the top of the burlap in the shape something. She would go like the blazes!

It would take her a couple of days to complete a 36 inch by 24 inch rug. Whatever happened to them I have no clue, well at least the ones I remember her making at home. She must have made/produced hundreds over the years.

So, the rugs you see in this post are ones that either came from Ron's Mom's house or are ones that we used to use and 'put away' about ten years ago.

All of these rugs were made in Nova Scotia and most we bought 'at source'. A few were purchased on the South Shore and a few in the Annapolis Valley. 

Most are in pretty good shape but there are a couple that are pretty rough....either worn out naturally or by the claws of our 'late' kitty, Rita (who lived to be 17 years).

So I dug them out of the basement today to see what we had and to take some photos to have them 'recorded'.

I wish I knew the individual designs of each rug. I don't though. But I can say that they are very typical of some of the rugs that were made a few decades ago in Nova Scotia. 

Before closing this post I want to introduce you to someone we discovered last year in Amherst, Nova Scotia. Her name is Deanne Fitzgerald and she has a studio in that small town near the border of New Brunswick. She's been 'hooking' since the 90's and makes rugs that you would not believe! They are beautiful and have taken the 'hooking' craft/skill/art to a whole other dimension. Enjoy here.....check her web site out.

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