Grandpa Jerry's Rugs
Grandma & Grandpa, 20" x 26", 1/8" to 1/4"- cut wool on monk’s cloth. Designed and hooked by Jerry Bonk, Hastings, New York, 2012.
"Your rugs are fun rugs.” I often hear people say that about my work. I enjoy hearing it because my goal in creating a rug is to bring a smile or a little chuckle to the observer. Plus, I get a lot of fun out of them just by hooking them. My grandkids call my rugs “Grandpa’s rugs,” so that’s what I call them, too.
I am a retired antiques dealer. Over the years, I handled a number of hooked rugs, and I always admired the ingenuity and craftsmanship that went into making these. I also enjoyed the satisfaction of creating things with my hands with various hobbies over the years. However, 15 years ago, as I approached retirement age, my hands became unsteady, and I had to give up most of my hobbies. As I searched for new avenues of expression, I was hesitant to explore rug hooking because it was, as far as I knew, exclusively done by women. Fortunately, fate stepped in when my son’s six-year-old niece gave me a couple of her drawings; I just knew that I would have to try making them into rugs. I decided to make the snowman drawing my first rug. It was beautiful—and I had made it myself! I was hooked on hooking. The Lion & Baby in Cage was my second rug.
This article is from the March/April/May 2013 issue. For more information on our issues, check out our issues page.