Skip to main content

Cindy Irwin Retreat 

Create Your Own Amish Inspired Rug!


Cindy Irwin
Lancaster, Pennsylvania

Create Your Own Amish Inspired Rug

3 Day Retreat: 

Tuesday – Thursday, August 15 – 17, 2023
8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
$325.00 / Sauder Village Members $305.00
Heritage Inn – Gathering Room B



Several years ago, Cindy acquired 85 patterns from Fannie Stoltzfus, an Amish rug hooker from Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, who supported herself selling hooked rugs. Cindy has taken designs from the rugs and created templates for you to use in designing your rug. These templates include horses, horseshoes, Amish buggy, flowers, Home Sweet Home, etc.

Your rug can be designed from either the Amish rugs or antique Amish quilts. Cindy will also have templates of traditional antique Amish quilt patterns. The quilt patterns will be 12-inch square. You can hook your rug in any cut size.

Cindy will have an assortment of wool available in traditional Amish colors as well as wool that belonged to Fannie for you to add to this project – to make it extra special. She will also have backing available or you can bring your own wool and backing, if you prefer.


Sharing the beauty and history of working with Amish designs & an Amish perspective will be the focus of this Retreat, but Cindy will also share many general tips and techniques like working with geometrics, florals, pictorials, and borders. She will help you select a color plan resulting in either an antique look or a fresh contemporary look. Cindy will show you how to use these traditional Amish motifs and designs, through the use of templates, to create new and creative designs. This retreat has a lot of great lessons, as well as stories, heritage, and history.

Retreat students and others may wish to also sign up for Cindy’s Friday morning Gallery Talk, where she will talk about the wonderful Special Exhibit:  History of Amish Rug Hooking - and provide additional insight, techniques, and artist stories.



Basic - Students must have a basic rug hooking knowledge and experience.


e teacher will contact pre-registered students, starting on March 1st, to discuss your retreat project and supplies (to be purchased directly from the teacher). See DESCRIPTION, above, which contains both specific retreat information and project options. If teacher has not listed specific project info, they will typically offer a range of project designs/patterns and sizes.


Basic hooking supplies: a frame, scissors, cutter, cutter blades, hook & a Sharpie marker. 



Cindy Irwin has been hooking rugs since 1983.  She is a certified McGown teacher, holds classes in her home studio, and is a traveling teacher.

A member of the Celebration of Hand-Hooked Rugs - Hall of Fame, Cindy is also a juried member of the Pennsylvania Guild of Craftsmen, and president of the Conestoga Guild of Rug Crafters, Lancaster, Pennsylvania.

She is the former director of The Lending Library for the National Guild of Pearl McGown Rug Hookrafters and former assistant director for The McGown Northern Teachers Workshop.

Well known for hooked work embellished with gemstones, dimensional hooked plants, dresses, purses, and handbags, Cindy also does beautiful traditional hooked work.

Cindy’s work has been featured in Rug Hooking magazine and in their book series. She has also written articles for Rug Hooking magazine. Her piece titled Dad received the Sauder Award in 2018 at Rug Hooking Week at Sauder Village.

She offers a line of patterns, kits, supplies and materials through her Lancaster studio and online website.

Follow this link for

Retreats Registration