John Terzakis in New Jersey has made 3 1/2 rya rugs to date. It is his new passion.
His daughter, Elizabeth, in California contacted me in January asking if I could redesign the “Fireflower in Grays” design to a larger rya kit for her father to make for her with some additions of cranberry reds. That really didn’t seem to be too challenging a request, but in the throws of finishing my book, I couldn’t take on a designing job at that time. Elizabeth had definite ideas for exactly what she was looking for, so I challenged her to do the designing. When she shared her design on paper with me, I thought, “What a perfect opportunity to try out my worksheet and math formula on a rya-newbie.” I sent her lots of information directly from the book manuscript so she could do the process that would tell her exactly how much yarn it would need. In exchange for her doing this work (and helping me tweak the calculations worksheet) I agreed to drawn the design onto the backing for her. Good trade. At first glance she felt overwhelmed by the process I had emailed to her unexpected, and said her schedule and busy life would not allow her to do it. But on second thought she gave it a go and found that the process actually worked. (I did have to make a clarification or two which I have amended in the book–lucky for you all!) But she gave me a list of yarn needed which was quite exact from my perspective. She and her mother both put some time into figuring, but I was so impressed that it came out so perfectly.
I, in turn, took her design onto which she had superimposed a grid, and I drew it onto the 80 x 120 cm Rauma backing from Norway for them. I used strands of dark yarn to “stitch the grid,” then slowly and carefully drew Elizabeth’s deign onto the backing with a Sharpie Laundry marker. When I removed my grid lines, the backing was ready to go. Then I gathered the ryegarn and prydvevgarn exactly as Elizabeth had specified, and shipped the whole kit off to John.
I just found out that he is moving right along–maybe halfway done at this point. I hope to share a photo of the completed rya here soon. Since then I have spent hours working on the worksheets and formulas included in the book to make everything even clearer…and then I’m always here for you if you have a question.