Rug Hooking Guild of Newfoundland and Labrador

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Rug School 2017

RUG SCHOOL 2017 will be held at Killdevil Camp and Conference Centre in Lomond Gros Morne Northern Pennisula

Killdevil Rug School 2017 is one you will not want to miss.  Ask those who had a fine time during Rug School 2016.  If you were not able to attend that Wild Western Event, make sure you start to make plans soon for the 2017 version.  

 August 17- 20th are the dates for Killdevil Rug School 2017.  

Friday night is again going to be our theme night – Elvis will join Rug Hookers in the Wilds of Gros Morne.  Start to plan your favourite Elvis “get up” – could be Hawaian, German (military), Vegas, ideas are limitless!  Rock and Roll will be the music you will hear!   Start talking to your friends and family.  Work on your favourite Rock & Roll songs, get it ready to perform, maybe?!… could be a laugh.  Plans are in the formative stages so stay tuned.   Early travel plans for those living off the island will be necessary to avoid disappointment, don’t delay.  Hope to see you there!

Challenge Mat

Elvis, Long Live the King - Everything & Anything! This will be the focus of the challenge mat at Rug School 2017. Participants enter without revealing which mat is theirs. The entries are numbered, the selection process is done by secret ballot.

The year 2017 will mark the 40th year since Elvis lived as The King. We think this year's Friday Night theme will tie in nicely with our challenge mat.

There is lots of time to let your creative ideas run wild - the possibilities are endless.


Historic Sites, Events and Locations of Newfoundland and Labrador


Historic sites, events and locations provide a glimpse into our past and an insight into our heritage.  But too quickly they are disappearing.  Remember the destruction of the 130 year old house at 25 Winter Avenue in St. John’s last March?  No matter how much the action was decried nothing could be done to prevent it.  Many structures have been destroyed, with nothing to show where they were.

Members of the Rug Hooking Guild of Newfoundland and Labrador are invited to hook mats of different historical buildings, locations and events of Newfoundland and Labrador for a display in 2017-18.  This display would begin in the Legacy Centre in Cupids in May 2017, be at Rug School in Kildevil in August and travel to other sites throughout Newfoundland and Labrador until August 2018.  

Is anyone interested in hooking a mat for this project?  Places or events depicted need not be registered historical sites, but must be at least 50 years old and of historical significance to Newfoundland and Labrador.  

Read more about the Historic Sites, Events and Locations project here

I Dream of ..... A home, family, friends, sunshine, growing up, and being happy, healthy,  and free to play.

Read about the rug project here



RHGNL participation in the Intangible Cultural Heritage Inventory, Memorial University of Newfoundland Digital Archives Initiative

430 hooked mats from the collection of the Rug Registry of the Rug Hooking Guild of Newfoundland and Labrador are available for viewing as a Digital Archives Initiative of Memorial University of Newfoundland. In 2010, the folklore department offered to include this information from our files as part of the Intangible Cultural Heritage Inventory. We have more than 800 mats on file so more may be added in the future.

Links: click here to visit the rug collection archive, or click here to see other parts of the Intangible Cultural Heritage Inventory  or here to visit the MUN Digital Archives

Lighthouse Project

Lighthouses - guardians of our coastline - over 180 of these towering structures along with more than 300 other navigational lights have been put into service in the province during the last two centuries.   They have given immeasurable service to our fishermen and other mariners and are a part of our culture, especially for the vast majority of Newfoundlanders and Labradorians who have lived within sight of the ocean. Read more about the  Lighthouses of Newfoundland and Labrador Hooked Rug Exhibit hosted by the Rug Hooking Guild of Newfoundland and Labrador here.


Hooked Mats of Newfoundland and Labrador: Beauty Born of Necessity

This book, published in 2006 in partnership with DRC Publishing Inc., has been a very successful project for the Rug Hooking Guild of Newfoundland and Labrador. It features a collection of hooked mats compiled from the Guild’s Heritage Hooked Rug Registry and also highlights the history of mat hooking in the province and the formation and growth of the rug hooking guild itself.

The Heritage Hooked Rug Registry started in 1997 when Guild member Joan Foster began photographing mats, many dating before Confederation in 1949 and made in communities throughout the province. To accompany these pictures she collected stories and other personal accounts of the mat-makers and the circumstances that encouraged their work.

"Women made mats for several reasons but generally they were made to create warmth on floors often made of bare boards but some also earned a little money from their work and for others it was an important social event," said Mrs. Foster. "Whatever the reason, mat-making was certainly a part of the household duties for many women in rural Newfoundland and Labrador and one that seems to trigger memories of growing up in these households. What better tribute to our mothers and grandmothers than the preservation of this heritage."

As part of the Registry project, Mrs. Foster and other Guild volunteers visited communities to meet with mat-makers and/or their families. As the work of RHGNL began to spread, so did the interest in this project. In recent years, the Guild has held mat registrations at centers throughout the province and during annual rug school. To date, almost 800 mats have been registered and a copy of the Registry has been made available to researchers through the Provincial Museum at The Rooms in St. John’s.

Hooked Mats of Newfoundland and Labrador: Beauty Born of Necessity can be purchased directly from RHGNL for $15 plus postage by contacting Joan Foster at gjfoster@xplornet.ca.

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