Posted by: Laura Pierce | May 24, 2015

Fun Workshop with Monika Jones and new Finishing Technique!

It was another fun workshop for Wine Country Rug Hookers, an ATHA chapter in Northern California! We are quite active in bringing in teachers to expand our knowledge and expertise! Monika Jones is known for her beautiful old fashioned rugs and textured wools; she is also a lovely and attentive teacher.

'Chicken Runner' designed and hooked by Monika Jones

‘Chicken Runner’ designed and hooked by Monika Jones

Monika recently finished this rug for her Arizona kitchen. Yes, she uses her rugs on the floor in the kitchen and washes them as needed.

'Floral Oval' designed and hooked by Monika Jones

‘Floral Oval’ designed and hooked by Monika Jones

I love the changes in the background on this rug; in the old days when folks used scraps to hook rugs, they almost always ran out of one colour or another. This rug has various backgrounds in the old fashioned way.

'Diamond Floral' designed and hooked by Monika Jones

‘Diamond Floral’ designed and hooked by Monika Jones

The simple colour scheme in this rug is so pleases me; yellow, green, blue with a tinge of red violet, an analogus colour plan with an antique black background; an old fashioned variety of blacks. If you look closely, you can see the loops in the center are very large cut… perhaps as much as 1/2 inch.  Delightful!

All of Monika’s rugs have a beautiful edge; biased wool plaids that compliment the rest of the rug. Monika showed us how she creates the biased wool strips, irons one side and sews it to the edge of the hooking. She uses a ‘ladder stitch’ to keep the strip close to the hooking. Watching her demonstration, I knew I was finally ready to try this finishing technique!

'Fraktur Blessings' designed by Laura Pierce

‘Fraktur Blessings’ designed by Laura Pierce

This is one of my Fraktur patterns and I thought it would be suitable for this workshop. I decided to use a simple colour palette; one of my favourites, blue and gold!  Another ‘Outline & Fill’ project for me… I just love outlining with a plaid and letting it take me on a ‘Colour’ adventure.  By the end of workshop, i had picked my colours and wools.   My background would be light grey… dangerously dull… to tone down the YELLOW and BRIGHT BLUE!

Beautiful wools for 'Fraktur Blessings' by Lwp

Beautiful wools for ‘Fraktur Blessings’ by Lwp

Monika’s hand-dyed wools were all textures and laid out on the table behind me. The yellow wools started calling my name almost immediately, so I bought several along with a grey plaid and an orange red plaid. By the time I figured out my colour plan, the rest of Monika’s grey wools had all been purchased, so I used a couple of spot dyed greys from my studio wools. The stack of wool on the left are the wools bought from Monika, the middle stack is the background grey wools I dyed, and the stack of wool on the right is the wool I came with… that worked.

'Fraktur Blessings' with bias wool tape

‘Fraktur Blessings’ with bias wool tape

This project was so fun, I hooked it in a couple of weeks. It took another couple of weeks to get the bias wool tape prepared! I dyed several pieces of wool including some plaids and selected a piece that was a little heavy for hooking. With my rotary cutter, I cut 2″ strips on the bias, then sewed the strips together, ironed the seams and one edge folded.
At this point, I was hoping it was all going to be worthwhile!

Close-ups of the sewn bias wool edge

Close-ups of the sewn bias wool edge

When I had the blue bias wool tape made, I laid it around the rug to make sure it was long enough. I liked the 1 1/2″ edge of blue, so I realized I would have to add 3 more rows of hooking with the same blue, because the bias wool edge would only show about a 1/2 inch. I brought the project to the May chapter meeting and Nancy Bailey was able to describe the ‘Ladder Stitch’ technique to me. It works quite well getting the edge tight to the hooking. After I completely stitched the wool bias tape to rug, I trimmed the linen to just a little inside the width of the tape. I knew folding them both over, the inside layer would be longer; the linen wanted to be enclosed by the wool. With the rounded corners of the rug, everything eased in beautifully!

'Fraktur Blessings' designed & hooked by Laura Pierce

‘Fraktur Blessings’ designed & hooked by Laura Pierce

After a good pressing, ‘Fraktur Blessings’ is done and has a great finished edge!
‘Fraktur Blessings’ is available in my Flying Dog Hookery Catalog of Patterns; 20×36″ on linen, $65.
Now that I’ve hooked it up, I can tell you how much wool you’d need, or kit it up with similar wool.


  1. Lovely, happy mat! I like the finishing as well. Nada

  2. Thanks Nada,
    glad I’ve learned how to do this finishing technique… i think it’s perfect for a floor rug.

  3. Love your Fractur Blessings rug. They were all wonderful😃

  4. Hi Laura, Your ‘Fraktur Blessings’ is a lovely rug. I really like the design and the colours too. Lately, I have been in the mode of hooking lighter backgrounds. After being away for a couple of months, I’m finally home.. Monday, I will again, travel to Shasta Abbey to pick up my monk daughter for short, family holiday. Hope you are well. Ruth

  5. Love your Ftaktur Blessings rug and especially your cord and story about hooking it! One question. How large I’d the pattern and how do I order it or the full kit? Thanks

    • Hi Cecelia,
      thanks for your kind comments on my Fraktur Blessings! The pattern is 20×36″ and costs $65, plus tax and shipping. I will have to look at my notes and get back to you in regards to the full kit. I am just back from the ATHA Biennial and have a bit more unpacking and bookwork to do, but will follow up with more information privately via your email.

  6. Hi Laura, I have recently purchased your pattern, “Fraktur Blessings” and want to replicate the colors you used. Would it be possible for you to tell me the amounts of wool in each color you used to finish the rug. Thank you, I’m anxious to get started on your beautiful rug

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: