Friday, July 12, 2013

Weaving Winter Stories - Rug Show Theme For 2013

by Linda Myers

It’s a very warm summer day as my assistant, Wendy Sanborn, and I travel to the reservation.  As we head from Shiprock to Gallup, New Mexico, we stop at a small gas station trading post in Tohatchi.  We take a few minutes to look at the necklaces and rugs the Elders have traded for credit to buy food and gas.

There was a small selection of Pendleton blankets hanging on a wall. I loved a soft blue, brown and beige Pendleton that reminded me of aspen trees. I thought about how pretty the Elders’ rugs would be in these soft winter colors.

In late fall, when I was preparing for the Rug Show, I visited Doug Hollinger at the Park City Clothing Company.  As we talked, I noticed that he had the same beautiful Pendleton.  I bought it.  I decided to show the blanket to the Elders and ask them to weave winter rugs in these beautiful colors.

At the Rug Show in early November, I had a meeting with the weavers and told them that many people come to Park City to ski. I described how much snow falls in the winter and how everything is covered in white. I asked them to think about winter scenes of mountains. I pointed to a large picture of pine trees on the wall of the lodge at Deer Valley.  I suggested they think about snowflakes. We held up the Pendleton and showed the Elders the wintry colors.
By early January, the weavers began sending in their rugs.  Vina and Elvira Horseherder had taken brochures from the lodge that inspired their rugs of skiers speeding down mountains.
William Whitehair sent a beautiful snowflake rug into which he had woven silver threads that looked like crystal.
Helen Rose Lewis sent a cute little snowman rug.  The weavers sent many beautiful winter scenes.
We will be featuring two of our Elders’ rugs at the Rug Show auction.  Gloria Hardy has woven a unique elk rug which is bordered by a traditional snowflake design
Anita Jackson has woven a beautiful red snow flake rug, a design that she created after the loss of her daughter.
It is amazing to see the creativity and skill with which the weavers create new designs.  I am honored to have so much support from the Elders and their families as they create something new every year.


  1. Rug designs are fantastic. The weavers never cease to amaze me with their creative genius! Interesting to know how Linda comes up with the theme for the rug show. I like that her scarf matches the blanket.