Happy Holidays! In celebration of the current holiday season, Ania has chosen a festive rug for December’s rug of the month. This project is called “Raphael’s Angel” and the pattern is by Pam Smith for Honey Bee Hive Patterns. It was hooked in #6 strip wool.
Take a look below to see the rug in detail, and to read more about the project!
Why did you decide to hook this project?
I’ve always loved Raphael’s Angels. In the late eighties, I had Christmas cards that I sent out with Raphael’s Angels on them. I was delighted this summer, when I was at teacher’s workshop, to see that this rug was part of the offerings for classes.
The class was taught by Margaret O’Connor, and it was a wide cut class. I knew the project would fly by, and I’d be able to complete it by Christmas!
How did you approach color planning for this project?
The wool for the flesh and the face was provided in the class, and so I started with that. From there, I decided that I wanted to mostly avoid dyeing wool for this project. I knew it was going to be a Christmas themed rug, inspired by my cards from many years ago, and so I looked at reds and greens from my stash. In the original pattern, the angel’s arms were in mid-air. I decided to add a wall for her to rest on. I chose some reds for the wall and the whipping, and a variety of greens for the background.
For the wings, I used a series of shades of grey (which were kindly provided to me by a friend). I also decided the angel would have hazel eyes, inspired by my youngest daughter.
I used to dye my hair red, and when I was hooking this project, I had just decided to let myself go grey. I gave my angel red hair in memory of my old look! The wool for the hair is the only wool that I dyed specifically for this project. I dyed a six value swatch of ProChem’s Mahogany dye. Her hair also includes textures, an orange spot dye, and golds.
What are you most proud of in this rug?
I like her celestial eyes. I think they look calm and serene, and they add just the right air to this rug! I was also very excited when I came up with an idea that would give the angel a little bit of an impression of a halo around her hair. This halo impression was created by outlining her hair with a lighter color, which I took from a highlight I used in the background.
Do you have any other comments about this rug?
I wanted to add something special to the background, and so I hid some stars in there! I hooked five lines to make a star, and then I echoed those lines by hooking around them repeatedly. I also added little swirls of a lighter green as a highlight, to help offset the stars.
If you have any comments or questions, feel free to leave them in the comments section below!