Free rug hooking pattern: Seaweed

Click on the name below to open a 4 page pattern which you can print out:

Seaweed Pattern

Cut the pattern pieces along the dotted lines, and tape them together to make a 13″ X 18″ (approximate size) rug hooking pattern.

This design was inspired by a vintage rug that had a charming lollypop tree in a flower-pot. I interpreted the flowers into seaweed plants, which have a bulbous base, and floating leaves.

I can see through the linen well enough to transfer the design by tracing. I use a black Marvy fabric marker.

Choosing colors is always such a fun part for me, and it  is full of wild hopes and dreams uncluttered by realities. Which means, my color choices often have to be modified along the way to please me.

As I mentioned in the last post, I am using a couple darks for the background. These are etsy wools called Inky Olive and Dark Olive Brown. I am supposing that one fat quarter of each will be almost enough for this background. I am going to add other dark colors to make it more interesting. My lightest light is also an etsy wool color called Underfoot. It is a grungy tan-mocha color with hints of gray and bronze.

As my color wheel inspiration I am using the triad, orange/green/purple. Since I am going for a dark, poor-boy color scheme, all of these colors will be duller, browner versions of themselves.

Orange = rust, copper, pumpkin-browns

Green = olive, greeny-browns

Purple = gray-purple, muted lavender-grays

I cut a small cross-section of my guesstimate colors, stuff them into a shallow box which is my palette, and eagerly start hooking.

Where do I start? I always start with the background. Why? Because that is going to be the color that everything plays off. There will be no backing linen showing in the finished piece. So, start covering it up!

I am happy with how the background colors are working together, the inky olive with the dark olive-brown. I am starting to put in some colors for the motifs, although they are more or less place holders for now. This early it is hard for me to see how the colors will look together. And I am thinking that the purple and the orange are too bright for what I envisioned. But I will at least give them a chance to work.

Sometimes when colors don’t work together it is because I don’t have the right colors to go with them, to enhance them. I have a lot of muted colors and not many in a more saturated palette. So, I can’t do everything!

I have to admit that I lack much variety in the purple realm of colors. That is partially because I don’t see purple in old rugs. The palette I have chosen to work with is emulating vintage colors. So I shall take these limitations as the creative framework that I will stay in. I like have some bounds to my color choices. Otherwise things become too mind boggling!

I am alway excited to begin a new design. I anticipate new challenges with each new project. Creating a hooked rug is always a surprise, always a learning experience. That is what makes it exciting to me! I don’t have it all figured out. I let it unfold.

More on the process of hooking Seaweed next time ~ Karen


35 thoughts on “Free rug hooking pattern: Seaweed

  1. Karen, your colors are dreamy ~ captivatingly soft and ever-changing. I’m looking forward to watching your rug unfold…
    Thank you for your generosity and for your blog, which sooths, comforts and inspires!



  2. Karen: Thank you for this pattern and all your generous sharing of knowledge and ideas. You help me by saying that you pick colors for a piece but are open to change as you go. Color planning is scary for me and I feel I should know from the start what will work but I don’t – you comfirm that it’s OK. Ken


  3. Bravo Karen! Pictures along with your train of thought…inspiring! Very detailed in describing how you approach a new design and the technique of keeping the color balance in check…love this tutorial! Feels like I’m sitting next to you in class.
    Thank you for sharing your pattern with your Blog Friends. Speaking for myself this will be next in the frame!


  4. Karen I couldn’t wait to get up and come to class today! Thank you so much for sharing what’s going on in that creative mind of yours. Maureen


  5. Thank you Karen!! Very Kind they way you “share” your creative talents with us. I just printed mine out and look forward to hooking. MZL


  6. Thank you for such a fun gift Karen. Whats surprises me, but makes total sense is hooking the background first. I always had been told the motifs first then background. I am definately going to do the background first on this one….can’t wait to see how yours unfolds with all those beautiful colors.


  7. Karen, Thank you for sharing so much with us. I look forward everyday for your Primitive Spirit. So much effort that you place in your site. Thank you again for the seaweed pattern — this looks like alot of fun.


  8. Thank you for sharing your lovely pattern Karen! I’m curious about the orange and purple colors you mention above as being too bright; would you consider simmering them together in an otherwise clear pot of water to see if they would mute each other? I learn so much when you describe your methods of hooking, working and dyeing. Thank you for your beautiful blog.


    • yes, that would be an excellent alternative. i might add a little liquid laundry detergent to make the wool release its color, and then add citric acid to make the colors fix back into the wool. thanks for the thoughtful comment!


  9. Thanks for the pattern. I am thinking of what my lizard would like to crawl upon. He is made of orange and green beads, so probably he would like plenty of purple. And the pattern needs to be doubled since he is rather large.
    Something new to play with.


  10. Ditto to all of the above!! Your very descriptive words make me want to ‘dive’ right into “Seaweed” but alas, it will have to go on my to-do list, for now! Can’t wait to see your progress ~ so far, it’s just fabulous!!!


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