My Sudoku: A Shadow Weave Rug

My husband and his sister are both fanatical Sudoku players; if they need a minute to relax or switch gears, they pop up the grid on their laptops and challenge their brains in a different way.  I was reminded of that when I wove a rug in shadow weave, part of a group warp of the wonderful Rag Rug Interest Group at the Weavers Guild of Minnesota. Figuring that out was my brain twister, my sudoku.

My neighbor Roger Ilstrup says that he washed the porch just for my photo shoot. All weavings look great on Roger’s painted floor, better than our cement front deck.

The draft we used was originally published in Handwoven, March-April 1990. Judy Larson spearheaded the project, and she gave me just the right advice at just the right time to make my weaving successful and fun. She suggested that a tan fabric with a bit of pattern would show off the design best. I found the perfect CHEAP cotton, a Downton Abbey pattern. Of course it was for sale at a deep discount–did the designer think people would make Downton Abbey curtains, or dresses?

Even though I know I could figure it out, my first glance at the draft left me scratching my head. At a meeting of the group, Judy Larson said she couldn’t have completed her rugs (she made many) without this.

Oh dear. I had to figure that out for myself.  It’s the treadling pattern, and once I figured it out and put it in my own grid, I understood.

I found a rhythm in weaving and looking at the pattern, BUT YET–there is a mistake, one missing shot.  It’s the only thing I see when looking at the rug. And it’s not going to the State Fair for judging, that’s for sure. Go back to the photo; you’ll find it.

It’s still a nice rug, and we’ll use it in our house. Fitzgerald approved.


  1. Robbie, this is beautiful! I’m glad I’m not the only one who only sees mistakes in finished pieces…. I can’t train my eye not to go there! 🙂