Third and Last Post from the Ploughing Match



The Life Styles area was composed of several large tents. Ours even had a wooden floor (the only one I saw that did). This tent housed the rug hookers, quilters, spinners, lace makers, knitters felters and all things fibre. DSCF6819

It was so big, you could hardly see from one end to the other. The quilts hung in the centre and rug hooking including the Barn Project took up one end. Booths and demonstrations from the various member groups of SCACA (Simcoe County Arts and Crafts Association) were down this side. All the rugs and quilts were securely wrapped in plastic to prevent any possible damage.  (But made them very hard to photograph). Here is a small sampling of the quilts.DSCF6831






I find it fascinating to watch the spinners.


Jean and I were demonstrating hooking (In the only warm corner in the tent)….everyone else had several layers of clothing.


….and just outside the tent was a quilt made of mums on a very large bed (81 pots of mums to be exact).

So now it’s back to normal and looking forward to R.U.G. on Oct. 4th


International Ploughing Match Part 2 -Outdoor activities

While I spent my day inside one of the giant tents in the Life Styles section of the IPM, the official photographer was busy covering a wide variety of events. Here are some photos that he took of the events on opening day.

Obviously a ploughing match features ploughing competitions….


….using a tractor


…using horses and sitting….


…using horses and walking…


…even using mules!

There were large draft horses pulling wagons….


….and some not nearly so large…..5-005


….there was new equipment…


….and not so new equipment…6-003

…the police were on hand….


….along with lots of Canadian pride….


It was a day to stand tall!


….more to come  from inside the fibre arts lifestyle tent.



The International Ploughing Match 2014

Yesterday I spent  the day at the International  Ploughing Match. It was a very special experience and this morning I received an email and these great photos from Margaret Kennedy, who has graciously let me post them here .

Following are Margaret’s comments and photos:

“It was a glorious day at the IPM, the sky filled with clouds that would delight any rug hooker. Cold, windy yes. We needed lots of layers, even gloves, but we were not deterred.

Here are some photos of the day starting with dignitaries including Premier Kathleen Wynne and Andrea Horvath speaking.


Lots of school children arrived and were given special attention by Cheri and Marie.





And of course we would be lost sheep without exact instructions from our devoted leaders, Linda Wilson and Diane Audia.


Isabel’s IPM (International Ploughing Match) rug won praises that would reach the heavens.”




The rest of the photos were taken by Margaret, but the comments are mine.


The Traditional Hooked Rug sales booth was full of wonderful items to purchase.




The Barn Project was on full display.




Margaret said that four photos towards the end are of Louis Gervais’ work who is a wet felter, and I hope these are the right photos.






Margaret sent a photo of one quilt  entitled roughly, ‘Heading Home’.


Tomorrow I’ll post some of the photos I took. They’re not nearly as good as Margaret’s, but will show the immense tent we were in,(one of dozens) more of the quilts and some of the grounds.

The Ploughing Match is on until Saturday (Sept 20th) so if you’re in the vicinity of Ivy Ontario there are hundreds of acres to explore .



Borrowing an Idea

Signa Meus Vita is now steamed and lies flat and ready for the next step……the finishing.  (the variations in the background are not nearly as extreme as the photo makes them seem.)DSCF6775

The steaming itself presented a bit of a problem because of the “silk tears”. I didn’t want them to be squashed down , so I very carefully worked around them with the iron. However there were spots where they were too close together for me to steam the hooking and avoid them.  Luckily I found that if I quickly flipped the piece over and puffed the silk up with my fingernail, no harm was done.DSCF6778

They still stood nicely above the hooking.

The decision needed now was how to finish the edges. I knew i didn’t want a border, a whipped edge, or a frame. I want it to be a “hanging” as in “tapestry” style, as opposed to a framed “picture”. … on Tuesday at our first fall meeting of Sunshine Rug Hookers, I sat down with Cynthia (one of the most creative people I know), to ask her advice on how she had finished a rug I had seen and admired.

This picture of it doesn’t do it justice, but you can see the effect of the beautiful slub silk border, which has been lightly padded.


….so with her information in mind I headed off to Fabricland, and found this beautiful slubbed silk which perfectly recreates the picture I had in my mind


….once again the colours aren’t true….they go together very well in reality.

….as I said to Cynthia, I’m nervous to start the edging procedure, so I’m procrastinating by writing a blog about it instead. The plan is to create a type of “show binding” by cutting  bias strips of the silk which will be lightly padded with a small strip of quilt batting . ….just have to get up the nerve to start..

I’ve been hooking a bit more on “Dream Big” …less than two weeks now to the Ploughing match, so I should have some left to hook while demonstarting.DSCF6788Thanks for stopping by.


Dream Big

I’m demonstrating for a day at the upcoming International Ploughing Match, and obviously have to have some hooking to do. Having just completed my last project, that meant I had to get something underway quickly. Hmmmm  what to do???  Cheri and Gail came to the rescue.  They’re both investigating “graffiti” which  is the theme for next year’s annual….and were amazed and excited about the scope and intricacy  of this “street art”. Sounded like a great idea to me.

…..something simple and not too big that I can get working on quickly…..this caught my eye. Not the colours, or the text but the style.


…… then out with the pencils to sketch ideas. When I was satisfied with the lettering, I traced it with a sharpie,

DSCF6759then used my printer to enlarge it to 8.5 x 11,


added some “extras”DSCF6761

….then headed to the Copy Shop and had them double the size to 17″ x  22″


I don’t have a light table, but this is a small project, and I was anxious to get it underway, so I used the window method to transfer the pattern to my backing.DSCF6770

All this involves is taping the pattern to the window, then (having drawn the dimensions on the backing), taping the backing over top, and drawing the pattern directly. It’s not as accurate as my usual method, but great for a simple project. (just don’t save money by buying your green paint tape at a dollar store as I did….it didn’t stick well and kept slipping).

So now it’s started.DSCF6773

Now my only problem is to go slowly enough that I still have some to finish while hooking at the ploughing match…..or I could begin planning my next project….


Medonte Hooking

No, Medonte is not an unusual new hooking style. In the winter the area is home to numerous downhill ski resorts, and in the summer it’s a wonderful place to hold a summer get together for the Sunshine and Huronia Hooking groups. (It’s actually a township between Orillia and Barrie in central Ontario) Many thanks to Linda for organizing and hosting this hook in / dyeing / plowing match collection / day.DSCF6729

On this perfect summer day, some hooked outdoors, DSCF6752 ….and some worked inside.DSCF6725

…but everyone….like Mary Lou and Ann  enjoyed visiting and catching up on the latest news.


Linda helped introduce dyeing to a number of hookers…

and then they produced some dyed wool of their own.


Charlene was thrilled with her results.

New hookers had the advantage of many skilled people to ask for advice.


Here Gail was being consulted on a new hooker’s first rug.

While we all had a wonderful day, the real reason for this gathering was to collect and tag items to be sold or displayed at the upcoming International Plowing Match. It is expected that there will be about 20,000 visitors each day of the weeklong event so many have put in an extra effort to have plenty of items for the sales tables.


Linda is an “organizer par excellence” and had a separate room set up and all the tags prepared for the job. Liz is putting the tags on her work…


Cheri and Cynthia are doing the same. (Love how they are both peering over the top of their reading glasses.)

Many display items were brought (here’s a few)


Cecelia’s amazing lion (only her second hooked piece)


Ann’s pig….DSCF6747

Cathy’s maritime village… and for me the biggest surprise of the day…Isabel’s rug celebrating the plowing match…..not quite finished…but will be in time for the event. I hadn’t seen it before, and it took my breath away.


She designed this herself.


…the detail is amazing…DSCF6722

….and the team of horses are so realistic, they look like they could plow that furrow right off the edge of the rug!!!

More to follow in the next post.   Thanks for stopping by.

A Tribute to Linda Wilson

Linda Wilson was the originator, and a motivating force behind our “first Tuesday features” at Sunshine Rug Hooking…..and this week it was her turn to tell her ‘story’.

She grew up on a farm located between Elmvale and Wasaga Beach in central Ontario, went to a small rural school, and later graduated from Ryerson and U of T as a teacher of family studies. After a number of years in Northern Ontario, she and her husband Bill settled back in central Ontario, where  Bill taught highschool in Alliston, and Linda became involved with raising her family, rug hooking and a variety of other crafts.

She has been actively involved as a teacher of hooking, a member of SCACA (Simcoe County Arts and Crafts Association….I hope that’s the correct title) OHCG (Ontario Hooking Craft Guild), and hooking groups in Alliston, Barrie, and Orillia. She has been on the board of OHCG 3 different times, and highly involved with the OHCG teachers group . She is a wonderful teacher and organizer, and at present, is a co-convenor of the Canadian Barn Project…an exciting initiative to create a display of hooked pictures of Canadian Barns…a disappearing landscape. ….more info later.

She explained that most of the rugs she brought for display were from her 3 and 4 cut fine shading period… the time she began hooking…the only style one did.

I was fascinated by the shape of this octagonal rug in which she hooked veggies from her husband’s garden. It was designed to go in their family room…and a table sat on top of it in the plain area. 


That was in their last house….now it has a place of honour rolled up in a closet.

This was one of her earlier rugs…this is the right side…


But she displayed it from the back, since the front had faded quite considerably.


Linda explained that most of the hooking being done when she started…was of hangings, rather than rugs for the floor.


…….and most of the topics were flowers or vegetables. …Of course there was also the mushroom phase….and for her mushroom piece she devised this green padded frame which is wonderfully unique.

The bell pull in this picture was her second hooking piece. At the time, she knew nothing about colour, and naively chose the difficult colour yellow.


The lovely dress with the embroidered neckline, she made to wear when expecting one of her children.

Also displayed from the back due to fading…was this wonderful rug entitled “Back Home”. She put herself in it twice, doing activities around the farm where she grew up. 


She hooked it to go on the floor in a specific spot in her home…but realized there was a hot air register right in the middle. …..undaunted….she cut a hole in the rug for the register, and painted the register itself like a rose garden to become a part of the scene… creative is that! 

Linda usually enjoys hooking geometrics…but this one she says was a pain to hook…It was designed as a part of a presentation with the teacher’s group on ???????…style designs. (the name escapes me). The frustration came from choosing colours which were very closely related, and trying to keep them sorted out . It almost creates an optical illusion.. 


This lovely butterfly resides in her washroom, and her mom hooked an inch rug in the same colour palette to go on the floor. 


You can just see the edge of it at the bottom of the picture….somehow I missed taking a separate photo of it….I’m so sorry. 

This piece was originally intended as a bag….but when finished…it was too heavy to carry comfortably…so she converted it to a sign for her studio.


Her leaf bag however is much more practical…and light. She drew the leaves from ones she found on the ground and hooked them on verel.


The colours are beautiful, and the shading stunning.

One year, when she was convenor of the Annual, she made this vest to celebrate the theme….Shakespeare. 


The entire vest is covered with Shakespearean quotes about friendship


 She loves vests, and made this one featuring sheep. The ones on the back are hooked, and those on the front are appliqued……


…beautiful…but she says….very hot to wear.

She also loves teddy bears…and made this sweet teddy vest.


She belonged to the teddy bear club, and admits that she got carried away making them. She had a “teddy bear” bedroom, and made many for her friends.


She made Tetley for Luise Bishop…so named because he was dyed with tea.

One of her favourite pieces is this picture she did of her Dad…He was very proud of it and would point it out to friends.


I think this is sooo clever….the photo which inspired the hooking, has been mounted on the back of the framed piece…so when you flip it over…there it is!


Here is her motto rug….love the cobwebs, and bits on the floor.


Her latest rug is this depiction of her daughter-in-law and her two grandchildren…with a Klimt inspired background motif.


I love the realistic curls made from coiled wool…which actually hang down on Mom’s forehead.

I’ve taken several courses from Linda, and she is a wonderful teacher. She  hosts parties and courses (both her own, and ones given by other teachers) at her amazing studio in the countryside, works tirelessly on events like the annual Quilt and Rug Fair, and is a large part of the reason why Sunshine Rug Hookers is such a terrific group.