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“Penny Rugs” Workshop


Janet Conner

Hiram, Maine 

Dates: 1 day – Saturday, August 21, 2021
Time: 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Class Fee: $150.00 / Sauder Village Member $140.00  
Supply Fee: $25.00-$75.00 (see below) - payable to teacher during class
Location: Heritage Inn – Heritage Rm
Teacher’s Website:


Conner---W3Description: One form of appliqued table rug that became very popular during the mid to late 19th
century was the “penny rug”, so called because of the small circular patches of wool used to create geometric and pictorial scenes. After shearing, spinning, weaving and wearing one’s own wool, no one would throw away a piece of woolen fabric until it was smaller than a penny! Every scrap was recycled. Soon creative stitchers developed images of flowers, urns, birds, and familiar animals in their penny rug appliques. Each penny rug was further embellished by the use of simple embroidery stitches to hold each patch in place, and to add expressive detail.

Prior to class, students can preview the Penny Rug Kits on Janet’s website. The price of the kits is based on the size and complexity of the project and materials. Each kit contains a unique selection of pre-washed and hand dyed wools, patterns and design suggestions, along with the embroidery needle and threads! Once you have selected your kit, email Janet in advance and she will bring your kit to the workshop. She will also bring additional kits, for those who fall in love with penny rugs and want to start their next project.

In class, the sequence and procedure of penny rug making will be demonstrated from start to finish—including creative stitches. History, antique examples, and sources for purchasing more materials will be discussed. Anyone who enjoys rug hooking, rug braiding, or quilting would enjoy making penny rugs! Plus, it’s a great way to use leftover bits and pieces, it’s a portable project that’s great for traveling, and the finished penny rugs make wonderful gifts!


Teacher will contact students prior to class:  No 

Level: Everyone welcome, no prior knowledge or experience required. (Some hand sewing required.) 

Supply description: Pattern for Jack Squat and Tails from the Marsh, and all supplies needed to make one pumpkin and one cattail. 

Students Need to Bring: Sharp scissors and a pencil. 


Conner---W4BIO: Janet Conner is an avid rug hooker who has been pulling loops since 1979. Graduating from Moore College of Art in Philadelphia, she spent 30 years teaching Elementary Art in southern Maine, while raising a busy family. After retirement in 2005, Janet was able to work at rug hooking and fiber arts full time, launching her web based business, which offers a line of her own patterns as well as rug hooking supplies and equipment, books, and natural dye recipe cards. She teaches fiber arts in her home state of Maine and throughout the States, plus Bermuda, England, and Canada, with a specific focus on art history and the inspiration found in both fine art and folk art. In addition to rug hooking, she also teaches miniature punch needle, proddy, and penny rug techniques.

Twenty-five years of studying and repairing antique rugs has influenced Janet’s love of old fashioned methods and timeless motifs. She has contributed chapters on cleaning and repair of antique rugs to Rug Hooking Magazine’s book Finishing Hooked Rugs. She co- authored Rug Hooking Traditions with James & Mercedes Hutchinson, which debuted with the Hutchinson Exhibit, during Rug Hooking Week of August of 2016. In 2020, Rug Hooking Magazine/Ampry published Janet’s Magnificent Hooked Rugs: Inspired by the Art of Western Civilization. She is currently at work on a follow up book covering rugs inspired by Non-Western Art: Indigenous World Cultures.

Janet’s rugs have appeared in Celebration of Hand-Hooked Rugs XXII, Rug Hooking Magazine, Hooked Rugs Today 2004, and galleries throughout New England. Her greatest joy is to foster the success of her students; many of whom have made rugs in her classes that have been featured in Rug Hooking Magazine.


Registration starts at 10 am on November 18th, 2020
Follow this link for information on the registration form:
Workshops Registration