I started this rug a little over 6 weeks ago. I finished the last stitches last night. The last pattern square below was a fun little challenge. I decided to make the motif using stitches done horizontally, rather than the usual vertically over 2 threads. I wanted the “hook” stitches going in the same direction as the arms of the motif. Then I went around the entire motif with a darker brown – each stitch over 1 thread. This gives a sort of three-dimensional look which I like. The challenge was to figure out how to do the background, without overpowering the motif itself. The original has a small border around it, so I did that in the very pale yellow. Then I decided to use the lightest of the greens to do a background. I decided to fill in the center part first and then have a larger border around that. I think it looks good – filling in the center gives an octagon look, which is very Moroccan. So here it is.
Anne commented about the basketweave squares for this set after the last post. Each of the basketweave square took a full skein of floss. I didn’t have 3 skeins of the green I wanted to use, so I stitched the green squares with Anchor #8 perle cotton. I thought the #8 perle would be easier to stitch with and would look great. For some reason it looks like a lightly overdyed color. That’s probably the light is being reflected off the thread in a different way than the floss. Looking at the completed rug and studying it’s overall design and effect, I think the basketweave squares done in floss look much better. Here’s the finished rug.
My thoughts on this rug –
1. Overall, I think it all works well together. The original rugs from this area have lots of color, even changing the color of the basketweave squares within a set. This rug has the look and feel of the original rugs of the area.
2. I learned a lot of new patterns and a few more motifs while stitching this rug. I know I’ll incorporate some of them into my original designs that I’ll be creating next year.
3. I still don’t know the best way to do the motifs that are stitched on top of the solid color areas. Even though I tried hard to make the add-on motifs neat and straight, some of them don’t look good to me. Adding them to the perle cotton squares was more difficult that on the floss squares.
4. Using the overdye threads for the first of the outer borders of each section helps to tie all the colors for each set together. Traditionally, the first border uses about 4 colors from the rug and those colors are alternated around the entire rug. I decided to do that differently and like the look it creates.
5. Orange is not my color, but I love the final result of that set.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on this rug as well. What didn’t you like? What worked well overall? What didn’t work overall? These rugs are learning experiences for me – trying to learn about Berber rugs that are made today, and have been made for hundreds of years. The study will continue with the High Atlas rugs. Look for more information at that project, starting next week.
And thank you all for joining me on this journey through Morocco.