I’ve sold quite a few rugs recently and I needed to replace them for some upcoming classes that I’m coordinating for Jennie Slick. We try to have as many examples as possible for students to look at and handle and when they’re sold, it makes room for more examples. I do prefer to buy new rather than vintage rugs because I want to provide direct support to contemporary weavers whenever I can.
One of the rugs that I bought on Saturday is a Fannie Pete Pictorial depicting an angora goat in full tufted splendor. Fannie and her sister Cora both do these wonderful pieces of folk art with all manner of creatures, and I was very pleased to find this one. The wool is Brown Sheep commercial worsted with angora mohair locks. I haven’t measured the rug, but it’s probably about 25″ square.
Another piece that I bought was woven by Rose Yazzie and is a completely different type of weaving; a masterfully woven near tapestry grade Burntwater. Navajo weavings are not referred to as tapestry until they have a thread count of 80 wefts per inch. I haven’t counted the wefts in this one, but I suspect it has about 60 wefts per inch. The yarn is Burnham’s Trading Post #2, which has about 1300 yards per pound.
Rose is not only a phenomenal weaver in her own right, but she has taught all of her daughters and granddaughters to weave. You can read more about her family at www.spiderrockgirls.com. Although Rose usually weaves 4’x 6″ pieces, she often does these smaller rugs for auctions.
The Burntwater design originated in the New Lands area of the Navajo Nation near Sanders, Houck and Pine Springs, Arizona. The weavers in this area have become quite adept in using the local plants to dye their yarns and have modified the modern classic single and double diamond patterns to use this color scheme. If you look at the basic design in Rose’s weaving, you’ll see that it could be a Two Grey Hills, Ganado Red or Klagetoh Red rug if different color schemes were applied.