Hula Hoops have a new artistic purpose – as frames for making a fabric rug.
That’s what 14 Oklahoma Home and Community Education club members learned Thursday morning from member and librarian Michelle Parnell.
The women all agreed they enjoy learning something new and visiting with their friends at the same time.
“This is a new project I can enter in the county fair,” said Ann Lamons. “I enjoy learning something new; it’s a challenge.”
At first, Lamons was unsure about her success in the venture.
“I’m getting it, it’s not as hard as I thought it would be,” she said.
Parnell learned about the rug project from a magazine.
“I saw one in Branson selling for $50 or $60,” said Parnell. “This is a good project, because people can take their own paths to do it.”
While some used smaller frames of embroidery or quilt hoops, the outcome was to make something usable from an item they had on hand, material or T-shirts cut into 1-inch-wide loops. The smaller frames were used to create potholders just the right size for a tea kettle.
To begin, weavers first must know about warp and weft. The warp is the material strung on the hoops, and the weft is the material used to weave.
For the warp, participants cut 1-inch-wide loops from the bodies of one or two T-shirts. To make a rug, approximately 11 loops are required. For the weft, at least 50 loops are needed from the remaining shirts. Warp loops are stretched over the hula hoop, from top to bottom. Additional warp loops are added at perpendicular angles, until all 11 loops are in place and the Hula Hoop looks more like a wagon wheel with spokes.
The first weft loop is secured to the center of one of the warp spokes by wrapping it around the warp, then looping it back through itself. Weft loops are then woven over and under the warp spokes forming a tight spiral. The process is repeated until weft loops reach the frame of the hoop.
A basket weaver, Launa Erskin was enjoying the project.
“It’s similar to weaving baskets,” Erskin said. “I’m going to give it to a friend; it would cheer somebody up to get this.”
Glenda McCollum was using a quilt hoop.
“Who says you can’t teach an old dog new tricks?” she said. “I’m enjoying visiting with Mildred [Fain]. I like learning new things, but I’m bad to start a project, and then it ends up in the sewing room, but this is fun, once you get it started.”
Oklaoma Cooperative Extension Service Educator Heather Winn plans to give her rug to her mom for Mothers’ Day.
“Don’t you think she’ll love it?” Winn asked.
She also visited with the women about it being a good project for the summer sewing camp they do for 4-H and other youth.
OSU Cooperative Extension Service secretary Fran Ridenhour said she and Winn found seven categories in the county fair book in which this project qualified for entry.
“This is something you can do on your own, make your own design and work at your own pace,” Ridenhour said. “You don’t need to buy supplies, you can use what you have at home.”
Thursday is $1 bag day at Encore Resale Shop, a used clothing store, said Ridenhour.
“We’ll have to get more T-shirts,” she said.
It takes about 33 shirts to make a rug.
Using the scissors she earned as OHCE Member of the Year, Ridenhour cut T-shirts into strips with ease for herself and her mom, Bonnie Moss.
“After I sat down, I figured this out,” Moss said, “I like to keep my mind busy so I don’t think about the five exhibits for the county fair that are sitting on my sewing machine. I plan to put my rug at the foot of my bed or in the utility room.”
The morning workshop was appealing to Violet Chambers in lieu of housework.
“I had ironing to do if I stayed home,” Chambers said. “This is interesting. Michelle [Parnell] is my great-niece.”
The project fits with Chambers’ philosophy of learning something new every day.
“This is easy; I may not be doing it just right, but it’s easy,” she said. “We used to braid rugs out of old clothes; that’s all we had for rugs.”
Carol Trevier said they do all kinds of projects at the Tahlequah Public Library on Monday mornings at 10.
“We make dolls and rugs; they’ll teach anybody to knit or crochet,” Trevier said. “I use old sheets to crochet rugs.”
Carol Clark had a purse she made of material strips she crocheted everyone admired.
“I crochet rugs, but this is a lot faster,” Clark said. “My purse is made out of old curtains.”
This is therapy, said Bonnie Smith, who plans to put the washable rug in her entryway.
“We all need a little therapy. You don’t have to think about anything while you do this,” Smith said. “It’s a good project to do in the wintertime when you don’t want to go outside.”
Parnell said the Park Hill OHCE Club she belongs to provides a workshop every year, so she was looking for something everyone could do and enjoy.
“Weaving is kind of therapeutic, and the over-and-under [motion] doesn’t take much thinking,” she said. “One lady works at the School for the Blind, and she’s going to teach her students to do it.”
An old children’s toy – the Hula Hoop – is being put to good use by area crafters, for a new form of fabric art.
Hula Hoops have a new artistic purpose – as frames for making a fabric rug.
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Walk a Mile 2014
Men squeezed into feminine footwear Saturday by the hundreds to walk in solidarity with women on the issue of sexual violence – and their clop-clop-clopping echoed down Muskogee Avenue.
The fourth annual “Walk a Mile In Her Shoes” brought men to Norris Park, accompanied by their enthusiastic female supporters, to walk – and often wobble – in high heels over a mile-long course to raise funds for Help-In-Crisis.
“It hurts every year,” said John Christie, a Sequoyah High School student participating in his third Walk a Mile. “I get home, sit down, blisters come up and the calves hurt. But it is worth it. It’s for a good cause.”
Michigan man gets 13 years on plea to rape, sodomy of girl
A 28-year-old Michigan man will spend about 13 years in an Oklahoma state prison after pleading guilty to four counts of first-degree rape and one count of sodomy involving a 13-year-old girl.
Christopher Dale Adams, of Lake Orion, Mich., received a 13-year prison sentence for each of the five charges, to be followed by seven years suspended. All sentences will run concurrently.
Police take down pair on pot distribution charge
Tahlequah police officers arrested a pair Sunday night for allegedly possessing marijuana with the intent to distribute it.
Tahlequah Officer Cody Warren said police were asked to investigate when 35-year-old Amy N. Logan, of Tahlequah, allegedly took a family member’s car without permission.
While Warren was speaking with the owners of the vehicle, Logan arrived along with 26-year-old Theoplilus James Mollie, of Tulsa.
Two nailed with meth, pot hidden in bag of chips
Two people were arrested early Monday morning when Tahlequah police stopped a vehicle near Basin Avenue and found methamphetamine and marijuana hidden in a bag of chips.
Tahlequah Officer Cory Keele said he noticed a Nissan heading north on Park Hill Road, and the vehicle later stopped in an intersection.
Nylon case doesn’t fool deputy; drug charges to be filed
A Tahlequah man is jailed at the Cherokee County Detention Center after being arrested on drug possession charges.
Deputy Michael Cates stopped Johnny Lee Gawf, 25, near Stick Ross Mountain Road and U.S. Highway 62. Gawf did not have his driver’s license and had a no-bond warrant for failure to pay.
When Gawf was asked to step out of his vehicle, he allegedly reached into a pocket and pulled out a black nylon case, which he claimed to be a pocket knife. Gawf sat the case in the seat of the vehicle.
Dual citizenship still OK for tribes
It’s been almost a year since the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians in Oklahoma was forced to close its casino, leaving about 150 members without jobs.
Right before the operations was shuttered, Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker offered a plan to absorb UKB employees, scheduling three employment registration meetings in September 2013.
TPS to hold graduation at Doc Wadley, after all
A letter obtained by the Tahlequah Daily Press states that graduation exercises for the Tahlequah High School Class of 2014 will be held at Doc Wadley Stadium on May 23.
Tahlequah Public Schools received an invitation from the city and Northeastern State University to hold the graduation ceremony inside the NSU multipurpose event center, and the district was initially agreeable. But the necessity of limiting invitations to 10 or 15 per student because of seating concerns drew heavy criticism from seniors and parents.
Woman allegedly went after relative, then cop
Deputies say a 22-year-old woman assaulted a family member Saturday, then attacked an officer when he tried to arrest her.
Deputy Bryan Qualls was sent to investigate the domestic disturbance at Hilltop Circle. Donna Wilder, the alleged victim, told Qualls that the suspect, Kaylynn Sharp, was hiding in the garage, and had struck her in the face several times.
City of Tahlequah progressing on bond projects
Just more than a year after the city began collecting a sales tax funds for use on capital improvements, crews continue to work toward finishing several of the projects.
“We’re going to deliver everything we said we would,” Tahlequah Mayor Jason Nichols said Friday.
The $21-million-plus bond issue approved in 2013 includes about $10 million worth of street projects. South Muskogee Avenue will eventually be widened into a five-lane stretch; East Fourth Street’s widening project is underway; and West Fourth will become, at least in part, a three-lane road.
Projects will also focus on parts of North Grand, East Allen, Bluff, Crafton, and North Cedar.
Four men charged with burglary
Four local men are facing burglary and stolen-property charges in Cherokee County District Court.
Prosecutors have charged the four men with second-degree burglary and knowingly concealing stolen property.
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