Alas, I seem to have sold or given away some pieces without keeping pictures, but here is a partial gallery. This is a work in progress, so please check back.
Started and finished in 2021. This pattern is called DUNCAN and while I initially believed it was one of Pearl McGown's earliest designs, when she was in her geometric phase, research ended up revealing that in fact it's one of her last designs. A big surprise when I found that out. I did the color planning and of course, the hooking. I used a #8, occasionally inserting #6 strips from previous rugs. Some of the wool was dyed by me and 90% of the wool was taken from my stash; I only had to buy a few pieces. I'd like to thank the late Lida Skelton Ives, whose "Duncan" I saw years ago (2009) in a posthumous show of many her rugs held at the University of Connecticut in Storrs, CT. I had never seen this pattern before and fell in love with her version instantly. I knew I wanted to make one myself. Mine looks nothing like hers (I love hers) but she was my inspiration.
Welcome Mat, 2020. This is a small ruglet (about license plate size), punched by me with Manos del Uruguay hand-dyed Maxima yarn, using Oxford #13 and Oxford #14 punchneedles. The calligraphy was designed by Liziana Creations and the rest of the design by me. Done on Monks Cloth foundation. Buttons added for adornment.
"Delishus Tunafishus," 2020. Heavily modified by me from the original pattern, called "Americus Tunafishus," designed by George Kahnle and dyed & hooked by his husband, Dick LaBarge. Their original pattern is, I think, still available at the Heavens to Betsy website--she bought their patterns when they died. I changed the text and completely re-drew the fish. Hooked in #6 and #8 cut wool; the border is punched (the red outer border) with a #13 Oxford Punchneedle and some red yarn that I dyed. The interior red color is the same yarn but I hooked the interior red motifs and punched the exterior red border. I believe the width is about 26". This is my tribute to Dick and George; I knew them and adored them both.
Two pillows, 2018-2019. The pillow on the left is traditionally hooked in a #6 cut, using a pattern called Old Pottery by a company named Ruby Hill Fiber Arts in Nevada. I enjoyed making it and then had the idea that I wanted to punch it with wool yarn to show the contrast between traditional hooking (wool strips) and punch hooking (using yarn). The pillow on the right is punched with worsted weight yarn dyed by me. I like them both, and they are indeed different. However, when I went to re-buy the pattern to use for the pillow on the right, I could no longer find the company--or any trace of them from the past--on the internet. I searched and searched with no luck. Finally I just re-drew the pattern myself and went ahead and punched it. And then, of course, I did finally find the owner and was able to pay her for the use of the second pattern. Perseverance furthers!
2016 RUG, "LINES, TRIANGLES, DOTS" DESIGN, TRADITIONAL PUNCHING AND HOOKING BY ME; YARNS DYED BY ME. PUNCHED WITH AN OXFORD #9 NEEDLE AND THE OXFORD MINI; SOME TRADITIONAL HOOKING WITH #7 WOOL STRIPS. (2' X 3') I USED THIS FOR MY CERTIFICATION RUG WHEN I BECAME CERTIFIED AS AN OXFORD RUG HOOKING SCHOOL TEACHER. © TO ME, 2016 ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
2016. "Moon Runner," also called "Moon and Clouds." This is an old McAdoo Rugs Pattern (these patterns are now sold by the Oxford Rug Company in Cornwall, Vermont). Color planned, dyed, and hand punched by me. Each skein had to be individually dyed for this rug, which is 36" x 72"). There are approximately 40 four-oz skeins in the rug, and I punched it using an Oxford needle.
2014. Tarot Card XXI, The World. Created for a traveling exhibition of tarot card rugs which will tour nationally and internationally for a few years, called "23 Artists Hook the Major Arcana." This rug is traditionally punch-hooked using an Oxford Punch Needle and rug yarn hand-dyed by me. I embroidered the Universal Waite Tiny Tarot cards (after laminating them first, and punching holes through which I could stitch). The cards are placed where they traditionally go on the Tree of Life. "Universal Waite Tiny Tarot Cards," ©1977 U.S. Games, Inc., used by permission. PHOTO CREDIT: Anne-Marie Littenberg, 2015.
2014. A Scrappy Rug, made for my bathroom using leftover hand-dyed yarns from previous rugs. I used a #10 Oxford Punchneedle on this. It's been washed in the washer numerous times and looks the same as the day I finished it. For some reason it took me at least three years to get this rug done (outrageous given that it was punch hooked, which is speedy).
2013. Red Horse Rug. This was an Underhill Farm pattern (no longer in business, I think) I had around for years. When my best friend gave me a fabulous wooden carved and beaded horse from the Southwest, I realized the pattern and the carved horse (which is not red) were the same shape, so I hooked this rug for her. She currently has both the carving and the rug. But we'll pass the carving back and forth. I traditionally hooked this in both an 8 and a 6 cut, color planned it and dyed the wool also (the yellowish wool is as-is).
2009. This rug was a collaboration with members of my rug hooking group. I designed it to comfort a member who had experienced a horrific family tragedy. Each member of the group traced and hooked her own hand (my hand is in the upper center panel) as a way of adding her love to the rug. Emmy Robertson (one of our members) hooked the lettering. I hooked the corners and all the background in the interior and around each hand.
2005. Turkish Tradition, a pattern by Jane McGown Flynn. I did the dyeing for this rug and hooked it in a #5 cut. The late and truly wonderful Betty Laine of Canada coached me through making this rug--the pattern was not straight on the grain and she kept me sane while I figured out how to deal with that. Thank you Betty and I hope you are working on your next rug in hooker's heaven.
Circa 2004-2005. This rug uses a lyric (used by permission) from the Garnet Rogers song "Summer Lightning." The line inspired the rest of the rug, designed and traditionally hooked by me in a 6 and 8 cut; I also dyed the wool. After the rug was finished, I sent it to Canada in the care of a very reliable Canadian friend, who delivered it to the Rogers' farm. I never heard a word back from them, and only hope it arrived.
2004 "SEVEN STARS" RUG, Designed, color planned and dyed by me. I hooked this in a 6-cut. The design was based on a dream that I had. You can see a small punchneedle embroidery "prototype" in a frame lying on this rug. I often try a quick punchneedle embroidery (PNE) in miniature first, to test out colors and to see how to handle the motifs, before I hook a rug. A closer view of the PNE is below.
2001. Jessie's Arbor, a Philena Moxley Pattern from the 1800's, given new life by her great-granddaughter, Stephanie Allen-Krauss of Green Mountain Hooked Rugs. I did the color-planning, dyeing, and traditional hooking on this rug using a 6-cut. I totally fell in love with this pattern and its rich history, and never tire of this rug. Check out Philena's fascinating story at http://greenmountainhookedrugs.com/pages/philena-moxley
Two undated pieces (perhaps mid-1990s), both pillows, and both McGown patterns. Both are done in a 3-cut, during an early phase when I thought I was attempting to learn traditional hooking (including small cuts and shading).
Undated. This is my very first hooked rug. Probably finished in the mid-to-late 1980's. Although I wove rugs in 1969 and 1970 on a 45" jack loom, and even partially hooked a rug in 1971, this little monster is my very first completed traditionally hooked rug, adapted from a pattern sold at the old Braid-Aid store in Southeastern Massachusetts (long gone now). I have no idea who the designer was, nor do I remember the title of the pattern, but I modified it by adding the quote. I made this in a #6 cut, using only off-the-bolt wools. The quote reads: "IT IS PLEASANT TO HAVE BEEN TO A PLACE THE WAY A RIVER WENT." (Thoreau) I refer to this as my "Hideous Fish" rug. It is not a favorite.
Hooked in the late 80s or early 90s, I think. I just (2019) rediscovered this very early hooking I did. When it was done, I gave it away. A good friend brought it over to see if it could be repaired (the lower left and lower right corners, and a few other places, are coming apart rather badly). This may even be the very first thing I ever hooked. I did it in a 3-cut, which was all I knew about at the time. I just hated hooking it; it's a wonder I ever continued! 3-cut is not my preference. Am guessing the date of this is late 1980s or early 1990s. It is a DiFranza design. Unfortunately the backing (could it be burlap? because burlap rots) is disintegrating quickly. Or perhaps it's moths destroying the backing, altho the friend who owns it says she has no other moths, and she has a few of my rugs on her floor, with no damage to them. So a puzzle. The repair would be onerous and probably unsuccessful, as the entire thing could continue to disintegrate, so alas, I won't be fixing this. But it's nice to have the photo as a record.