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Magnificent Hooked Maps

“Regular maps have few surprises: their contour lines reveal where the Andes are, and are reasonably clear. More precious, though, are the unpublished maps we make ourselves, of our city, our place, our daily world, our life; those maps of our private world we use every day . . . our personal memories that make the private tapestry of our lives.”
—Alexander McCall Smith, Love Over Scotland

Digital maps are everywhere it seems. Where would we be these days without MapQuest, map apps on our smart phones, and GPS navigation in our cars? Those usually helpful, often annoying voices that direct us as we drive are our new-fangled substitute for those never-to-be-refolded-properly road maps from the local gas station.

However, maps are much more than that. We never lose the urge to personally connect with our surroundings, both present and past. The map rugs you see in the magazine and here online are rug hookers’ own personal maps, the maps of their lives. Each of them tells a story, and most of the stories are intensely personal. The mere fact that we painstakingly produce these map rugs speaks to the emotions they invoke: This is where I was when . . . This was the homestead back in the day . . . This is where I would like to be . . . Maps beckon. Maps tell stories. What is your story—have you hooked a map mat? –Editor

This article is from the June/July/August 2013 issue. For more information on our issues, check out our issues page.
 

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