Most of Monday was spent out of the studio. I traveled down to the Irvine Fine Arts Center to do a program on rug hooking for the South Coast Weavers and Spinners Guild. This is a very dynamic group of fiber artists (65 members, 35 in attendance) who gather together to pursue their interests in weaving, spinning and related activities that go with them. (I have never seen so many people knitting at the same time during one meeting!) Personally, it was good to get connected with this group (I joined) as I will enjoy being able to spend time with other weavers.
My general presentation provided a historical and practical context for rug hooking.
In addition to this armful of big rugs, I took 4 suitcases full of visuals. Part of the presentation was a basic tutorial of how to pull loops. For that section, we just logged into the Center’s internet server and used my YouTube lesson on rug hooking. (If you have not checked out my You Tube tutorials just go to You Tube and put in Gene Shepherd. They are nice for group events.) After a basic Q & A time, we had an hour long beginner’s hooking session for any of the group who wished to get a little hands on experience.
The quick and easy project was this little 4″ log cabin coaster that I showed on this site last month. Working with fellow rug hooker, Pam Furry, who also happens to be the Program Chair for the Spinners and Weavers Guild, we put together enough kits for anyone who wanted to do some hooking. Twenty two took up that challenge. Given the fact that this was a group of fiber people, many were able to bring a hoop, crochet hook or a bit of interesting fiber to use in these mixed media pieces. Pam drew all the patterns. Between us, we assembled a collection of hoops and hooks so all who were interested could have a project to work on.
Students were able to pick out what ever colors and fibers they wanted from the resources table.
Wool fabric, silk, nylon and yarn was available in a variety of cuts and colors. (People always do better when they get to pick out colors they like.)
Given the short duration of the class, people got right down to work.
As you can tell, they are a very interested group of fiber artists. This was no surprise as I find, generally, people comfortable with one type of fiber art have a greater likelihood of succeeding with a new fiber art form.
Knowing that we had only a limited amount of time, our only goal was to get them started pulling loops with the idea that they could take the pattern and enough fiber of their choice to finish in the comfort of their home.
Still, they got off to a good start.
Besides all the nice loops, there was one other indicator that this group of beginners had all the makings to become serious rug hookers -
They could hunt for fiber like seasoned professionals!
If you would like to learn a little more about this group of kindred spirits go to http://www.scwsg.org
TODAY ON THE INTERNET RUG CAMP
Gene shows a new Biennial challenge mat as well as discusses some wool choices for another mat project. If you would like to be a subscriber to the Internet Rug Camp go to www.internetrugcamp.com/