Timberline Lodge loom

hooked rug Timberline Lodge

Timberline Lodge on Mt. Hood was built during the Great Depression, and it's a great example of the resourcefulness of artisans at that time. Woven textiles and woodwork were made by hand with locally sourced materials.  One of the pieces I'm always drawn to when visiting the lodge is this unfinished hooked rug.  The original rugs for the lodge were made from old uniforms and wool blankets. 

I often incorporate reclaimed materials into my handwoven wall hangings, particularly wool blanket scraps from Pendleton Woolen Mills. This week I thought I would try my hand at rug hooking. 

Cathy McMurray hooked rug

The craft is slow-going, but I feel a kinship with the artisans of Timberline Lodge as I cut blanket scraps into thin strips and loop them through burlap. In 80 years, rug hooking hasn't changed much, and there is something so appealing about that. In a fast-paced world of constant fads and time-saving gadgets, traditional crafts prompt makers today to slow down and reclaim value in the artful process.