Dianne here….Christine has been keeping you up on our joint fiber travels, but one trip she did not take was the Triennial TIGHR (International Guild of Handhooking Rugmakers) conference in Victoria, BC. in early October. As the name implies, the conference is held every 3 years and the location and hosting changes with each conference. It was last in Australia and next (2018) will be in Yorkshire, UK.
Our friend and co-author Kris McDermet had gone to the last conference and we both were asked to teach and demonstrate at the recent one. She flew out from VT and we packed the Prius to the gills and headed north to Victoria, making stops in Portland to visit my favorite Pendleton outlet locations. Kris had heard of these from me over the years so was interested in seeing them. We made it across the border, no mean feat since laws are strict about bringing things to sell over the border. I had had an uncomfortable experience a few years ago when bringing 3 of our books back into the US so have always been wary of the border….in fact Kris took the wheel and answered all the questions (Kris and my husband think I answer more than is necessary when talking to border guards).
There were about 200 conference attendees, mainly from Canada and the US, but Australia, Japan and UK were represented also. It was very interesting hearing how rug hooking is done in other countries and especially what materials are used, e.g., in Australia despite all the sheep, there is little wool so other fibers are used! We had panel discussions, short classes, a visit to the Royal Museum to see very old rugs and lectures about Cowichan Sweaters and a remarkable Canadian painter, Emily Carr. As is the tradition, participants were asked to bring a hooked friendship mat to share and if you wanted, a hooked piece for the rug show, either with a “Back to Nature” theme or an interpretation of one of Emily Carr’s paintings. I did my friendship mat of a starfish, hooked and braided in velvet and wool and tried my hand at hooking (and of course braiding) an Emily Carr painting I found online. I loved the painting but must say I did not enjoy ‘copying’ it. As I hope you can see, the braid and some of the hooking is done in velvet.
Our good friend Jane LeBaron hooked a stunning interpretation of an Emily Carr…see how she captured the movement of the sky? And here is an original Emily Carr painting we saw at the museum along with a picture of an old rug they showed us.
After the conference I taught one of three post TIGHR workshops. Mine was a 3 day “Beautiful Braiding” with Braiding around Hooking and Chair Pad. I had students from the Yukon and Newfoundland among others. Here is a picture of their projects: