Rug Design 101: Getting Started

I've been asked by a reader to blog about my process of rug designing. What a good idea! I am going to create a series of posts occasionally on the subject under the label Rug Design 101. Even more than that, I'm going to create a new rug design in the process!

I have a couple of things that I tell my graduate students who come to me struggling to write a paper, not knowing what to say or where to go. I tell them, "Just get started. Write something. Anything. Don't worry about the whole thing right now."

The same is true about rug design. Just get started. Anyone can do this. Really. With all the computer tools available to us now, designing beautiful and pleasing rugs is fairly simple.

When I first get started, it is usually because I have come across an image or a photo that is inspiring - something that jumps out at me and says, "I need to be a rug." This initial inspiration is important because it motivates me to carry through with the rug and complete it. It is the passion for the subject that keeps me going. So find an inspiration - a photo, a memento, a drawing, etc. Find an image that inspires you to turn it into a rug.

So here is my initial inspiration for my new rug. When I visited Mission Concepción in San Antonio with my family recently, I turned around in the baptismal chapel and was struck by this painting created in the 1700s framing the doorway. It immediately jumped out at me and said, "I need to be a rug." This is the picture my husband shot of the painting which will become my rug.

In the next post, I will discuss initial design decisions step-by-step.