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Robin Rennie Retreat 

Your Personal Fairy Tale Rug


Robin Rennie
Gregory, Michigan

Your Personal Fairy Tale Rug

4 Day Retreat: 

Tuesday – Friday, August 15 – 18, 2023
8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
$400.00 / Sauder Village Members $380.00
Heritage Inn – Heritage Room


princess-bear-illustration-RennieThis year’s Rug Hooking Week exhibit includes The Golden Age of Illustrated Fairy Tales, a project featuring hooked rugs based on art from the Golden Age of Illustration. Golden Age Illustrations were created by the top artists of the time, between the 1880’s and 1920s, and are both whimsical and sophisticated. Created to delight both children and adults these illustrated books sold from ten cents to over five hundred dollars and were wildly popular. Now largely forgotten, the pictures changed the way people saw the world and viewed literature and art. Recreating this art in a hooked rug challenges the hooker to learn new ways to view both art and hooking.  The illustrations are a joy to hook and create fascinating rugs.

In this retreat, you will have a chance to recreate a fairy tale rug yourself based on one of these historic and charming fairy tale illustrations. When Robin contacts you, you will be offered the choice of 6 patterns, 3 patterns are from the exhibit, and 3 more are designed especially for this class. Since the focus is on the Golden Age of Illustration, your pattern must be chosen from this selection. You will receive a full kit of wool which will allow you to recreate the original illustration or if you like, you can discuss with Robin, in advance, making some changes to the color palate. 


Students will learn new hooking techniques needed to bring this illustration to life including some interesting suggestions for shading and embellishment. You will also get lots of other hooking tips that can be used throughout your hooking career and a few extra surprises. Students will be working in cuts # 3 - 6. Some patterns are well suited to beginning hookers while other may be selected to challenge experienced hookers - your needs may be discussed in detail when selecting your pattern.

You will also learn the captivating history of this era, which, in a very short time, changed the way the public read, received media information, and educated children. It was a fascinating time and gives us an amazing source of ideas for creating remarkable rugs.


Basic or Intermediate - Students must have basic or good rug hooking knowledge and experience. The level depends on the pattern you select, guidance in selecting an appropriate pattern for your skill level will be provided, when the teacher contacts you.


The 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 # 3 - 6, and a hook. 



Robin learned to knit at her grandmother’s knee at the age of three and has loved fibers ever since.  Although she enjoys all fiber arts, rug hooking and needle felting are her passions. Her hooking ranges from folk art primitive pieces to realistic, finely shaded work. Needle felting is the medium she uses to produce her “fantasy figures”, sculpted from unspun wool roving.

When not hooking and felting, Robin worked for over forty years as a student advisor to both undergraduate and graduate students, and then as high-level program administrator at the University of Michigan and Michigan State University. She ran her own consulting firm working with top tier universities and the National Science Foundation. She now spends her time working with wool, petting cats, and enjoying her grandchildren.

Robin developed and co-chaired the "Hooked on Fairytales:  The Golden Age of Illustration Project" with Melissa Pattacini. She has been a certified McGown rug hooking teacher since 2005. She serves as Executive Advisor on the Board of Directors for the McGown National Rug Hooking Guild. She is a member of Southwestern Michigan Rug Hookrafters, McGown Guild - Chapter 2, and Woolwrights Rug Hooking Guild, ATHA – Chapter 110.


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Retreats Registration