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Gail Dufresne: Class of 2018

Name: Gail Dufresne

Location: Lambertville, New Jersey

Tell us a bit about yourself. What are some of your interests and hobbies?
Movies, gardening

How did you get introduced to rug hooking?
My mother and sister began rug hooking with a vengeance when I was 14. I have been around it all my life.

What was your first project?
A cow, and above the cow the words “Drink Mlk Today.” Did not hook the background. Still have it in my studio.

Is there one rug that stands out as being particularly memorable?
Lizards and Ladders was a huge learning curve. It taught me the "value of values." I struggled with what color to hook the background squares and realized it was not the color but the value that mattered.

Is there a particular style of rugs that you're most interested in hooking?
I like 3-dimensional rugs. I do not make rugs to be utilitarian; I make them to express myself artistically.

What's your favorite part about hooking a rug?
The process. The feeling of making something special with my hands. I think rugs are like a good book, and I often hate to get to the end. I immediately wonder what I will work on next.

What's a piece of advice you'd give to a new rug hooker?
Don’t be too hard on yourself and try not to judge yourself against others or let them judge you. Try above all else to have fun.

What do you love most about Celebration?
Getting to see what others have created and watching rug hooking trends.

Sunflowers, Celebration VII

Sunflowers, Celebration VII

"I entered Sunflowers into the Celebration VII contest because everyone else in my hooking group was entering theirs. I did not tell anyone that I was entering because I was sure that I would get rejected! I never would have guessed that I not only was deemed a finalist but that my rug was..." Read more.

Thanksgiving, Celebration VIII

Thanksgiving, Celebration VIII

"I loved every minute of hooking Thanksgiving. It was when I was into very fine 'finger shading' most loved intimate detail. My sister, Yvonne Wood, had hooked this design before..." Read more.

Carib, Celebration IX

Carib, Celebration IX

"Carib was selected for me as my first teaching project for the Southern McGown Teachers Workshop. Of course I loved the choice since I was still a professional gardener at the time. I decided to use dip-dyed wool, which I thought perfect for hibiscus. I started the rug at the Green Mountain Rug school in a class..." Read more.

Lizards and Ladders, Celebration XII

Lizards and Ladders, Celebration XII

"This design got its start when Norma Batastini proposed to our local McGown hooking group that we create game boards as a group project. If I recall, I was the only one to take the bait. I told my sister about it, and she gave me a book on old game boards. In it were different interpretations of the game board Chutes..." Read more.

Log Cabin Spin, Celebration XIII

Log Cabin Spin, Celebration XIII

"Sometime around 1999, I began to explore the concepts of value and chroma in-depth. In 2001 I completed Log Cabin Spin, which was inspired by a design by quilter Georgia Bonesteel. I used 'as is,' undyed, textured wool, which I separated into relative piles of light, medium, and dark..." Read more.

Lizzie, Celebration XXV

Lizzie, Celebration XXV

"Lizzie was designed to be a 'friendship rug,' to be hooked with members of a huge group, each of whom was going to hook a block on the design. The group disbanded before even one block was hooked. Lizzie sat around for quite some time before I decided to hook her for myself. The squares are..." Read more.

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Gail's work is wonderful and so much fun--delightful colours and passion shine in all her rugs!

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