Thursday, December 4, 2014

Today is...

International Hook-In Day

Are you hooking today?

Rug Hooking Magazine will be blogging about it and posting on their FaceBook page

You can read more about how this "day" came about on TIGHR's page

I'll be hooking in-between many errands today...
Hope you all have a great day... Hook on ~L

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Good Saturday Eve...

Dear Friends,
I hope you had a Great Thanksgiving Holiday!

It's been a very busy and happy week here.
Our son heads back to campus tomorrow:(
but will be back in a few weeks for winter break:)
hard to believe his 1st semester of college is almost behind him.

Tonight I'm finishing Holly~Tree
My newest wooly cupboard hanger
Stitched of my hand-dyed wool with wool threads and black walnut aged ticking.
This is my December offering for Early Work Mercantile tomorrow night.

This week I'll be pulling the last loops in On The Hill
The 2015 Annual Rug project

when the sample is complete...I can move on to prepping the kits that will begins shipping in January.

Have a good week ~ L

Friday, November 14, 2014

So much excitement...

The excitement about my 2015 edition of the Annual Rug Project has been heartwarming!
I’m hooking as fast as possible to get the sample finished for all to see.
Yesterday’s sneak peek fueled many questions,
so this morning I posted order info on the website,
you will find it here ~
Here is Part One...

I will post photos of Part’s 2 & 3 as soon as possible…
Thanks so much for your interest ~ Laurie

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Brrr…Winter has come to the Northern Prairie…

Hello Dear Friends…
Altho’ it is the middle of November, it sure feels like January
I know many of you are experiencing the same…
Good weather to hunker down under a good rug project;)

I’m working on the design for the 2015 Annual Rug Project.
After the appeal and success of last year’s project, Primitive Medallions…I admit that this year’s choice was very difficult for me.
There are loads of sketches on my drawing table…
And the one that kept popping to the top is a prim pictorial I’ve named “On The Hill”.

It measures 22” x 34” and like last year will be a THREE part project.
...linen pattern and 1st wool kit will ship in January 2014

Even tho’ the cost of materials keeps going up, I’m hoping to keep pricing the same!
I know many of you would like to include the Annual Rug Project on your list to Santa
So I hope to be able to have details on the website and do a proper unveiling soon!

Keep safe and warm, ♥ ~L

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Arrived in the studio today...

The website has been up and mostly down today...hopefully this will all be fixed soon...yes I'm getting grayer;)

I've been adding more items to my Etsy Shop'll find this newest edition of A Simple Life magazine and other goodies there.

It's beginning to feel like November here on the Northern Prairie...snowing up north...drizzly here...
a perfect night to snuggle in with a cup of tea and a good read!

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Website woes...

I've hesitated posting this...perhaps it is denial...perhaps just too overwhelming… but there is uncertainty ahead…

For reasons unknown to me (and many other site owners) the host of our websites decided not to renew her contract with the web server…she’s gone without a word.

I contacted the server and was reassured that there were no plans to close done any sites…but service has been out for extended periods and it is quite unnerving!

For now I’m keeping my fingers crossed that all will be well. The thought of building a whole new site is sickening. It is a huge time commitment…and, frankly now when I’m caring for my elderly parents…time I just don’t have.

I LOVE my site…it’s been years of tweeking to get it to the cozy, welcoming place that everyone has enjoyed for nearly two decades.

So…if you try to visit and can’t get thru…please don’t give up on me…
the studio is packed with wooly goodness…

You can always contact me here on the blog…

thru FaceBook at

Or my Etsy shop

I’ll keep you posted on any permanent changes…
Have a great day ~ Laurie

Thursday, October 9, 2014

How much wool do I need? Do I have enough?

This is the dilemma every hooker faces when planning to hook a pattern.

The time honored way to “guess-timate” is to take a piece of wool, fold it anywhere between 4 to 8 times, lay it on your pattern and guess that will hook the area it covers.

I’ve been teaching and selling rug hooking kits and patterns for a long, long time…I always use the “6 layer” method when kitting. I rarely run short, unless the hooker pulls their loops extremely high…or packs their work too tight.

If you are tired of guessing and being nervous that you don’t have enough, I’d like to share a little exercise that will prove a valuable tool for all your future rugs! This is something I have all my design students do before starting to color plan their projects.

If you knit or crochet you will recognize the term gauge swatch…a must do when starting a pattern to make sure it will fit correctly. Everyone’s tension can be a bit different, yarn and needle or hook sizes very…so it is an important step that will save a lot of time and frustration.

We hooker’s have an advantage in that even if we hook with multiple cuts (widths of wool), we usually settle into a similar height and spacing…so a fat quarter wool will usually hook the same size area!

In a few hours you can make your own personal “Hooking Gauge” . A tool that you can use to help calculate wool requirements for all your future rugs! Here is how…

You will need:
* rug backing…if you work on a variety of backings, you might want to hook a gauge on each type. The amount of wool you need may vary depending on your backing. Most people hook tighter on Monk’s Cloth than they do on linen.

* a Fat 1/16th of wool…while you could certainly take the time to hook up a full fat ¼…it is much quicker to multiply later! For those you aren’t familiar with the terms fat 1/16th, fat 8th, and fat ¼…these are measurements hookers have borrowed from quilters. Wool measures differently than cotton, so our measurements are slightly different. Generally a washed yard of wool will shrink to about 32” x 56”. “Fat” means that you are dividing the yard into quarters both horizontally and vertically. If you are a visual learner like I am this diagram should explain it better than I can…
If you are working with recycled wool find a piece or pieces that will equal the area of 16” x 7” (112 square inches).

Cut your wool into strips. Whatever size strip you normally use…#8…8.5…hand cut…whatever size you prefer!

Now hook all of these strips into your backing, making a rectangle. Hook as you would normally hook any project. If you leave long or short tails to trim…or if you hide your tails…it doesn’t matter. What does matter is that this is YOUR hooking gauge and you want it to be an accurate sample!

When you finish hooking, steam your sample so it lays flat. You can trim the excess backing, leaving enough to fold over and hem to the back so it doesn’t fray, or zigzag stitch around your hooking. I fused a piece of wool to the back with a fusible web like Wonder-Under and then trimmed away the excess backing.

Using your Hooking Gauge…
Lay your gauge over the area you want to calculate wool for. You can see in the pictures below that I flip it over and count how many times it takes to cover the motif.

To cover the pineapple it took 2 times my hooked Fat 1/16th…which equals a Fat 8th of wool!
Do the same for all the elements and background on your pattern. Obviously for small elements and area you will still have to estimate.

I hope this information and exercise have been helpful to you!
Happy Hookin’ ~ Laurie

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Merrie October...

A gentle, cool rain to nourish our trees...leaves are falling...October is here!
I'd love to sit and sip a cup of tea...
but there is much to do in the studio to get ready for Saturday's Hook-In in Stillwater!

I was a wee bit late getting my Simply Autumn Pillow up on Early Work Mercantile...take a peek...

Hope you have a glorious day ~ L

Thursday, September 18, 2014

A lovely day...

Warm sunshine was pouring in the studio windows today...
a perfect late summer day!

Maggie Bonanomi's NEWest book...
Thistle Down Moon
has arrived and all the pre-orders have been mailed out.
There are still copies available on the website and you can preview the index there too.
Maggie never disappoints is another fabulous book with 19 prim projects!

I've been enjoying Jill Peterson's newest book
They Make DO
It's perfect to curl up with a cup of tea after along day!
You can see this one on the website, too.

Bolts and bolts of gorgeous wool will be arriving soon...

The 3rd Part of Primitive Medallions is in the works! I'm working hard to get these out in the mail next week!

Tomorrow is 3rd Friday Open Studio Hooking/Stitching!
it will be great to see all the regulars's been such a crazy summer around here and I have missed everyone so much!
If you are in the area...stop in between 11 am and 2 pm..~L

Monday, September 1, 2014

Autumn is in the air...

Hello My Wooly Friends,
Happy Labor Day...the 1st of September...
and a glorious morning here on the Northern Prairie!

Summer has flown by and I'm settling into Empty-Nest-Hood
A strange territory...but I'm muttling along...

I've been absent here...ticking things off my insanely long to-do list...
with hopes of finishing a clients rug this week...
Shelley has been oh so patient with me!
I'll be at the frame today, pulling the last loops...the binding will come this between days spent helping my folks.

I'm so blessed to still have my parents!
And happy to be able to help them stay in their home...
for months now, I've been there at least 4 days a week...hopefully we are close to getting some help for a couple days a week!
I need to get back in the studio...prep for the Autumn Valley Hook-In...schedule some classes...and just spend some time soothing my soul by creating!

My newest stitch design...Magic now available on Early Work Mercantile
I've had fun stitching some small, portable projects...but have the itch to get going on some big rug designs...stay tuned!

Wishing you all a wonderful day
♥ ~L

Monday, August 4, 2014


Busy as a Bee this past weekend...and it was lovely!
I finally had a chance to dig in the dirt...

~ lavender ~ thyme ~ sunflowers ~ boxwood and fairies


15 pints of Cherries!
Hope you had a sweet weekend, too!

Thursday, July 10, 2014

In the studio & a little thread therapy...

Hello Friends,
Hope you are all having a good week!
I've been playing with linen and thread...
a little therapy to help me get back on track!
So many family things going on this summer that I feel a little out of sorts in the studio.
I found a stitch I did awhile back and finished into a sweet pocket.
Nudged by requests and have finally gotten the pattern together...
Both PDF Instant Downloadable and Printed Paper versions are available in my Etsy shop...

New WOOl will be arriving any day...
Lovely Textures!!!

Saturday is Open Hooking & Stitching in the studio...
it will be so fun to see everyone!
♥ ~ L

Monday, July 7, 2014

This just in...

Thanks to Judy for sharing her progress on Primitive Medallions!
She has completed Parts 1 & 2...and is patiently (hopefully) for Part 3's wool to arrive in early Autumn!

I love receiving photos of my designs...either finished or in progress...
so send them in!!!
Thanks again Judy...
Hope you all have a great week ~ Laurie

Friday, June 20, 2014

Hooking today...

Today was Open Hooking/Stitching in the Studio...

Many of the regulars had other is often the case on a beautiful almost summer day.
It was GREAT to visit with those that came...and lots of progress was made on our projects while we chattered away!

I'm nearly finished with Shelley G's rug...I'm sure she will be glad to have it. I should go out and pull some weeds...after all the rain we had...they would easily come out...but I think I'll just keep pulling loops...feels good!

The Solstice is hours away...Hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Here Kitty...

Prim Kitty Chair Mat Linen Pattern is NOW available!
Click here to view on the website...also available in my Etsy shop!

Have a GREAT day ~ Laurie

Monday, June 16, 2014

Lori is having a Give-Away

Please visit my friend Lori at Notforgotten Farm...
She is having a Witchy Giveaway!

It's a beautiful morning here on the northern prairie...
I'll be packing and mailing out orders...
taking Dad to his appointments...
and hopefully scratching in the dirt...
with all the rain we've had the gardens are lush...but the weeds are too! ;)

Have a wonderful day ~ Laurie

Friday, June 13, 2014

Beautiful Morning and Thank YOU's

Good Morning,
Thank you all for the congratulations on Nick's graduation and for my birthday wishes! It's been a wild week around here!!!
We just got back from visiting Iowa State University. It's official Nick is registered for Fall term in the College of Design!
Go Cyclones!
It's a beautiful campus...the trees are so lush and beautiful...and the Design building is awesome!
I would so like to spend my days in the textile studio...or painting studio...or pottery...
but I don't think he wants Mom to go to college with him...nor could we afford tuition x's 2;)

So, I'm back to work...sorting thru emails, desk clutter and finally getting caught up on orders! 2nd Saturday Open Hooking and Stitching is will be great to see everyone!

Hope you have a great weekend...and Happy Father's Day to all the Dad's!
~ Laurie

Friday, June 6, 2014


Washburn Class of 2014
Last evening we celebrated...It was a wonderful ceremony!
So many of Nick's classmates have been together since kindergarten...some from pre-school...
It's amazing to see the vibrant young men and women they have become!

Grandpa & Grandma were able to be at the ceremony and I can't tell you how happy that made me...and Nick, too!
Laurie, Nick, Paul, Grandpa Jim and Grandma Evie

Mom and Nick

Dad and Nick...My Guys!

Maddy and Nick

Thanks for letting me share our joy...
I promise to get back to posting about wool~work next week!
The studio will be closed until next Friday while we finish celebrating and then head to Iowa State U for registration! Nick will enter their Design Program this Fall...with his sights on becoming an's a long road...but something he has been passionate about since he was really young!

Open Studio Hooking ~ Stitching is Saturday the 14th...looking forward to seeing everyone!
Have a great week ~Laurie

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

The years pass so quickly...

Today is the last day of school!

Nick's journey began here in September of 2001
First Day of Kindergarten

...and today is the last day of his senior year

Tomorrow evening is graduation!

Well done my son...Dad and I are so very proud of you,
♥ Mom

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Progress to Share...

So happy to share this photo with everyone...

Judy Warasila of Coram, New York sent me this picture of her progress on Primitive Medallions!
It's wonderful Judy and I'm so happy you are having fun with it!
You hooked Parts One & Two so quickly!
Part Three will be shipping in September...maybe sooner...once we get back from settling Nick in at ISU.

So here's a shout out to all the other 2014 Annual Rug Project hookers'...send me a photo of your progress and I'll post them!!!
Have a GREAT week ~Laurie

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Introducing...Penny Garden

Rug Hooking Magazine
June~July~August 2014
Penny Garden FREE rug pattern and article...including wool applique and punch needle versions!
Preview on RHM website at

This issue just arrived in the studio/shop late this afternoon!
Hope you enjoy it ~Laurie

Unpacked and Back on Track...

This past weekend's festival was so fun...
Saturday is always SO busy the time just flies!
I'm thinking of getting a larger space next year...
it was packed and I'm afraid some people couldn't get in:(

Sunday afternoon, Paul, Nick and Maddy came out to help me pack up.
What a treat that was.

I'm all caught up on orders...such a GOOD feeling!
So now it's just weeds in the garden that are calling me...well...that and I should get a jump on patterns and kits for "something" that will be coming out in June;)
...and of course graduation is 2 weeks from today...eeck...
and...then the grad party and off to registration at ISU!

busy times...good times...wishing you well ~L

Friday, May 16, 2014

It's FESTIVAL weekend!

Seventeen years of wooly goodness...
Find me in my usual spot...
on the southwest end of Building C...

♥ ~L