Vote, An American Hooked Rug is the second piece that emerged from an unusually successful doodle session. What started as election year inspiration evolved into a story of pandemic. My rug hooking is always soothing to me, but especially so during these times. Usually, when I finish a rug I always remember the book I was listening to while working on it. This time, it is endless dire news reports from Maine Public Radio that loop over and over in memory.
When I first determined that I wanted the woman in this piece to be a woman of color, I was immediately asked if there even were non-white mermaids. I was so surprised. My thought had simply been to represent diversity among my rugs. I looked it up. As it turns out, there is a long history of mermaids across many cultures. But it highlights how much work we all need to do to come together as one community and to learn more about each other.
I’ve been going deeper with my rug making lately. Dyeing my own wools and cashmeres has become a growing creative rabbit hole for me. I knew I wanted the background of this rug to be the color of parchment. The wools I used for that are dyed with an assortment of onion skins and tea. The mermaid’s skin tones and some of her tail are dyed with non-toxic low impact dyes. It was such a joy to watch each color fall into place. I have no doubt those colors that I rejected will find their way in to other future rugs.
Vote, An American Hooked Rug
I hand hooked this rug with an assortment of wool and recycled cashmere. It is a linen foundation cloth.
Measures about 22″ x 32″.
Use it on the floor, as a wall hanging, or on a table or bed. If you expect your rug to get heavy use on the floor in a high traffic area of your home, I’m happy to add a sturdy rug binding tape around the back edge of the rug for an additional $65. Please send me a note if this is something you’d like done.