Tuesday, January 8, 2008

A video "tour" of my magnum opus rug, the "Anniversary Rug"

Here's a video tour of my magnum opus, the anniversary rug. I've been trying to get good stills to do it justice, but I've not been satisfied with the detail and color rendition yet, and since I've been promising to show you the finished product for some time, here you go.

Each rug has its own beauty both aesthetically and practically, but Tess and I think this is the most beautiful I've ever made. The design of it was free flowing but you'll notice some repeating elements / colors which unite it together, rather as the repeating theme unites a fugue

So the rug has four parts or stages:
  1. The center which features solid rows,
  2. The main body which features two types of rows:
    1. The first alternates solids and prints
    2. The second alternates solids so that different prints do not overlap each other, row to row
  3. The final stage which returns to solid blocks of color which do not form complete rows but whose length represents and approximates the prominence of those color elements in the previous two stages
  4. The final black finishing row, which echoes the solid black center and provides a visual frame.
It all sounds so planned when I talk about it that way, but in reality it wasn't. In fact... the center wasn't even planned to be our rug! Several of the solids were clothes I wore back when we met and I had a 33" waist, but the rug was initially planned for a friend, and was made up of the handiest congruent colors I could grab when we had to vacate our apartment for a few weeks because the water and heat had gone out and we had to make an impromptu visit to my mother's. The friend wanted a different color palette however, which was fine with us, as by then Tess and I had fallen in love with it. It was at that point we decide to make it a "remembrance rug"- we were nearing our 12th anniversary, and the center worked GREAT with the clothes from that era we'd been saving for just such a rug.

The next stage- the massive main body-I pretty much made up as I went along. I'd pull out an old piece of clothing, hold it up against the rug, and Tess and I decided whether or not it worked.

The final two stages were more carefully planned, to make sure it would finish off as beautifully as it'd started. I even lugged this beast on the "L" and bus to consult with Tess in the hospital room, since though I was making the rug, it celebrates OUR love and life together.

Generally most of my rugs are very "free form"

I throw together 20-30 pounds of clothes (the amount it takes for a 22-26" round rug) and decide what will work together. As I go along, I just try to follow the "dao" of the rug... I let it tell me what will look best.

To do otherwise would take something which is a relaxing stress relief for me and make it work. Some rug makers do much more elaborate designs, and should someone want to pay me enough to adhere to a tightly planned design, I'd do it, but otherwise... I just go with the flow.

The most elaborate design I've ever done is the "Berger Park / Lake Michigan Rug." If I've not posted pictures of it, I'll do it sometime soon so you can see what a more precisely planned rug looks like.

When my wife gets home from the hospital (at current projections, late this week, but this is one of her mist intractable migraines ever, so I'll believe it when she's home in my arms) I'll get a video of us talking about the various clothes which went into it- the dress she wore when we got engaged, my honeymoon silk bathrobe, etc. Maybe I'll have some stills which will do it justice by then.

The high quality Veoh version

Online Videos by Veoh.com

Should you have trouble with the Veoh version, look for it on Google Video or Youtube. I've been trying to upload it to the latter all day, and it hasn't worked yet.

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