Braided Rug Exhibit at Schwenkfelder’s

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Judy Hartzell’s braided rug On exhibit at Schwenkfelder Museum

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Debra Weinhold’s Braided Round with Multistrand Border

Christine here:  I promised part 3 of my Combination Rugs series… but I’m putting that post off for a bit while I rave about the exhibit currently showing (through March 1, 2015) at the Schwenkfelder Museum in Pennsburg, PA.

Last weekend we had a braid guild meeting, and we adjourned early to go over to the museum and see the exhibit.  52 of our guild’s braided rugs are on display!  I can’t tell you how wonderful it felt to walk in the large exhibit space with with braided rugs hung all over the walls as art pieces.  I felt that our medium was finally receiving the recognition it deserves as a form of art.

Yes, I know… there have been a few art exhibits of braided rugs before… two that I can think of:  one centered around Norma Sturges, the author of the braided rug book, in Wyoming; and one in the Colorado area centered around the Rocky Mountain Rug Braiders.  But THIS exhibit has my rugs and my friends’ rugs, so it’s more personal and meaningful to me.

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Debbie Wykosky’s Chair Pad with Fancy Border

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Multistrand Braided Rug by Dorothy Pepe

I want to thank the curator, Candace Perry, for doing such a wonderful job on the rug arrangements to make an effective display.

While I was there last Saturday, I got to meet fiber artist Susan Feller, who partnered with the museum on the “From Garden to Table” exhibit on the first floor of the museum.  It features historic Schwenkfelder pieces, as well as contemporary hooked rugs, centered around the theme of fruits and vegetables.  One of my friend Kris McDermet’s rugs is on display there, as well as some very visually interesting pieces by Susan Feller, and the historic pieces are truly amazing.  There’s a floral bouquet made entirely of feathers that looked shockingly real from a few feet away.  There is one floral framed piece composed entirely of pieces of felt that is just gorgeous.  Really, really fun to see.

If you’re in the greater Philadelphia area around the Thanksgiving or Christmas holidays, it is truly worth a trip!

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Susan Feller, with one of her rugs on display at the Schwenkfelder Museum

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Floral Bouquet constructed entirely of feathers

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Princess and the Pea, Christine Manges