Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Sweet Pea the Peacock

Inspiration can come from the most unexpected places!

Often, when I'm designing new patterns to hook, I'm operating from an area of familiarity. My childhood memories of traipsing outdoors, my family history of coming from a long line of commercial fishermen, hence many salmon rug designs. It is second nature for me to be inspired by my garden and the wildlife that comes and goes. How I interpret different life events, as they unfold, can become a story and a new design.

So, prior to last year, I knew nothing about peacocks! That was, until my sister adopted a young male peacock through a peacock rescue organization. Wow, they are interesting feathered, dinosaur-like creatures! This fellow has a lot of personality, and with a name like Sweet Pea, well, that just begs for a story to be told.

I had a workshop to attend in early summer, and since it was an "open" class, (meaning I could hook my own design, use a commercial design, or one of the instructor's design) I was able to let my imagination go! The instructor hooks in more saturated colors than I usually use, so I felt the peacock would be the perfect motif to use for her workshop. Having just met my sister's peacock, it seemed as if designing a peacock rug was meant to be.

I wanted the design to be "all about the tail"! I didn't intend to make the "eyes" of the peacock tail in the traditional way. I managed to sneak flowers into yet another rug! I used complimentary colors in the tail with a range of vivid bright greens and vibrant reds to make it sing! The little off-shoot of smaller flowers and green lines with leaf shapes that spill into the background, suggest the flowing movement of a peacock when it displays.

The head and neck of the peacock with the teal blues lean toward the green family. The little dots of green in the tail and along the edge of the tail in the background, are a green blue that draws your eyes throughout the piece.

I tried about three different colors for the body, the transition area between the neck and tail, but wools all drew too much attention away from the tail. What I finally settled upon was a beautiful marbleized wool that was a subtle teal blue and purple, along with some as-is textured wool.

The background is an antique black that has many shades of green, (view in previous photos) again to complement the reds and pinks in the rug. The little green circle/dots are similar in value to the background, because I wanted them to fade and blend into the background. Note in the black and white photo how there are different values move throughout the piece.

This year my sister adopted a mate for Sweet Pea. Now, I am wondering if Sassy Pea, the peahen, will need a rug designed in her honor?



  1. I love this piece and you have certainly captured the personality of this character! I'm finally catching up on my blog reading and I enjoy how you share your creative journey and thoughts ... How I wish that you lived closer, we could hook/quilt together and J and M could visit with us, cousin/sisterly love.

  2. Thank you! What a complement coming from such a creative soul as yourself! Hmmmm, the distance thing is a problem! Keep in touch! xo