You probably remember the first kind, they were very popular in the 60’s and 70’s.
Latch Hook Rugs
The hook had a little door on it and you worked with a 3” piece of yarn. You started at the bottom and row by row worked your way up to the top. The canvas was preprinted and you just followed the colors.
Well we are now hooking rugs, much like one hundred years ago, using everything we can find. It is a way of going green. The thrift stores have a bounty of treasures and rug hookers are on the hunt.
QuiltWoman.com now offers patterns for the two popular rug making techniques, Rug Hooking and Rug Punching (also called Oxford punch which is a popular brand name). Patterns, yarns, backings and much more stocked to give you hours of enjoyment in your journey of rug making.
Traditional Rug Hooking Using Mixed Media
There are rugs that were made for the floor and lasting through decades of use. Many people still make utility rugs today. The use of wool is warranted for the rugs to warm the floor.
But wall decorations are another whole matter. Anything goes with the decorative rugs. Along with wool strips, there are handspun yarns, rovings, dyed yarns, decorative yarns, sari silk, jersey, velvet and ribbons. The list is only limited by your imagination.
First a little bit about Hooking Rugs. There are a couple of things you need.
Backing: Burlap, Linen or Monks Cloth
Hoop or Frame to hold your background tight.
Cloth strips, Yarn or whatever you want to hook with.
Hooks come in all styles and sizes. The size refers to the hook at the end. It is shaped like a crochet hook (you can use one of these in a pinch) except the tip is a little more pointed.As true with any tool, buy the best you can afford. The hook on the left is a beginner hook and can have some roughness to the end. The middle hook is a pencil hook and you hold it like a pencil. They go for around $40. The hook on the right is an Ergonomic hook and you can see the shaft goes from small to large to make the opening in the background to pull larger pieces through. It is a Hartman hook (now called an Irish Hook) and they generally run about $50. The size 5mm is for doing larger hooking, such as homespuns and thick yarn, however, the smaller hook works just fine for these also.
How To Rug Hook
What does hooking look like? There are many videos on the web that teach the art of hooking but in general you are inserting your hook into the background and catching the fabric strip or yarn underneath (your opposite hand will feed the hook) and bringing up a loop. That’s it. The beginning and end of the strip is always brought to the top and snipped off.
What do the textures look like in a rug? They make an amazing visual. Instead of your rug being flat and one dimensional, it is now full of texture and excitement.
Can you find all the textures? Roving in the center, colorful ribbon, linen, sari silk, wool strips (worms) and plenty of yarn.
QuiltWoman.com will be carrying mixed media rugs for your enjoyment, however to get you started we have made some beginner rugs using just Barb’s Hand Dyed Chunky Yarn. Kits are available. All Patterns are 7” x 8”.
Watch for a upcoming blog posts featuring Rug Punching with Oxford punches.
Browse the selection of patterns, yarns, and supplies at Quiltwoman.com