Stained Glass in Fabric

Last week at Sunshine Rug Hooking, Linda Wilson gave a demonstration about hooking stained glass. Without my camera, I thought I’d missed my chance to share this technique, but as it happens, I wasn’t the only one to forget last week, and several people brought their stained glass work to share this week. So I wanted to show that work, and for those who may never have tried it, outline some basic steps to achieve the effect.

I have only hooked this one simple example, and you can see that I’ve never done the finishing. I always wanted to surround it with a real stained glass frame, but somehow that has never happened.DSCN0094

The day I got this pattern is one I’ll long remember. I had just started hooking, and my friend June Baker and I struck out one February day  to drive to Sheila Klugescheid’s house some miles away, to purchase hooking supplies. A raging snow storm blew up when we were on the road, and by the time we arrived, we had to struggle through about a foot of freshly fallen snow to get to her door. I found this pattern, and Shiela helped me choose the wool, then gave me the quickest lesson ever on how to hook stained glass. We couldn’t stay long for fear we would be completely snowed in.

Here’s the essence of her instructions for anyone who hasn’t tried it and might be interested….

Choosing wool:

-a dark colour for the leading (mine is deep taupe)

-spot dye or casserole dye for the background and details

Cutting wool:

-carefully keep the strips in the order in which they are cut and hook them in order (I used two sided tape affixed to cardboard to keep them in the right order)


-Begin with the leading ( she suggested I cut it a size larger than the regular size,,,,in this case #4 for leading, #3 for the rest)

-Hook each section in straight lines (Shiela suggested sections touching go in opposite directions….although some people hook it all the same way)


Edie brought three examples to share today. Rather than a spot dye, she used a dip dye for the gowns.


This little tree is mounted on actual stained glass.




Jean made this piece for her mother.DSCN0088

She said she wasn’t pleased with it because she couldn’t keep the leading lines straight.

Her second piece didn’t start out as an underwater scene, but as she hooked the foliage, that’s what it suggested to her so that’s what it became. To keep the leading lines even in this one, she “tunnelled” the loops. DSCN0089

When she said this…someone in the group said, “I thought you weren’t supposed to do that! ” ….the reply?  ” You’re not….unless it creates the effect you’re after” How true for almost every “hooking rule” there is.

Kathy brought some examples of quilted and appliqué stained glass.DSCN0083


What a wonderful way to decorate the house for Christmas. (such a talented lady)

Last week If I’d had my camera, I could have taken photos of beautiful  examples by several other people and included the extensive directions that Linda Wilson shared with the group . I apologize to them ( and especially Linda) for neglecting to do that.

Teresa has had a very productive fall. Along with a number of knitting projects, she has completed her shaded flowers piece,…..


…..and a hit and miss rug for her bedroom,DSCN0092

Congratulations Teresa. Love them both.

Thanks for stopping by.









9 thoughts on “Stained Glass in Fabric

  1. And thank you, Ms Elizabeth.  See you next Tuesday unless you are taking the Sandra Marshall course. We drove back to HH today to get some things I needed, liked spices and seasonings, and my electric mixer.  Weather was about 18′ and friends came and boated us over…and back to the marina. Love, Mary Lou in Thunder Beach, summer home of billionaires, all of whom have gone somewhere else for the winter.

    • I am taking the Sandra Marshall course next week Mary Lou, so I’ll miss you. A beautiful day for the trip back to HH. I hope for a mild winter for you and that you can enjoy your stay at Thunder Beach in spite of the isolation.

  2. Thank you for sharing all these lovely rugs and wall hangings, it is inspirational to view the work of others. I loved the happy fish one, so cute!

  3. Hi Elizabeth,

    I really enjoy your blog and I’ve learned a lot. Usually, I at least have heard the terms but this time, I’m baffled. What is “tunneling”? I’m a relatively inexperienced hooker; my first love is quilting.



    • Hi Elly, Thanks for commenting. I’ll try to explain ‘tunnelling’….normally the open part of each loop is at right angles to the direction you are hooking. When tunnelling, the loops are pulled in the same direction as the hooking…so that the loops line up creating a tunnel that you could stick say a knitting needle straight down the line. It is generally discouraged because the wool underneath has to twist for each loop creating a bit of a “lump” Hope that makes sense.

      • It makes perfect sense, now! I’ve done something like this but only for a couple of loops usually when I wanted a point. Now I know how to get a straight line if I need it.

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