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Party Animals

Seriously? A Series to Make You Chuckle

By: Story and Photography by Susan M. Cunningham

Party Animal: Moose, 37 1⁄2" x 44 1⁄2". Designed and hooked by Susan M. Cunningham, Laramie, Wyoming, 2018.

This rug series started when I asked my husband, “What shall I hook next?” We were sitting in our office, a large room with a high, vaulted ceiling. He looked up atop several 8' tall bookcases where four large folk-art birdhouses were displayed. The largest is a dark green wooden alligator playing a saxophone, his body labeled “Live Jive.” So my husband suggested an alligator playing a saxophone. “Perfect!” I said. That idea morphed into a trio of animals around a campfire in my large Jazz for the Night Owls rug, published in Celebration 21.

Time passed and we discussed the possibility of a series of rugs, each having an animal playing a musical instrument. Being very methodical, we listed a dozen possible animals to use and a dozen musical instruments to consider. The fun part was matching animals to instruments.

The alligator with a saxophone and the raccoon at a drum set were carried over from the Jazz rug we both liked. The idea of a moose playing a tuba that wrapped around his neck made us smile. We had fun imagining a wolf wearing Birkenstock sandals and shorts and a shirt in bright colors, playing a banjo. I found a delightful image of an upright turtle, which I modified to be wearing tennis shoes, holding a mug of root beer in hand, and giving the “thumbs up” sign as he danced to a boom box. The sixth rug was a bit harder to come up with, but a bear playing a piano finally made the cut.

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