Our favourite purple turtle is set for another excellent adventure.
Myrtle the Purple Turtle will be on display this Spring at the Annual Conference of the OHCG (Ontario Hooking Craft Guild) in our nation’s capital.
That’s both Myrtle-the-book and Myrtle-the-star of a wonderful hooked rug.
The creator of the rug is Jessica Charnock. If her name sounds familiar, that’s because she and Jean Long are the couple who are translating Myrtle into French. (Coming this spring.)
“There will be a show of rugs from all over the province and our group, as usual, will be represented,” says Jessica. “And that’s where Myrtle will be, together with the book. Our Area Representative loved the idea.”
Jessica started hooking rugs in 1996. Myrtle is # 69 in a journey of beautiful creations.
“I fell in love with an old Grenfell rug that belonged to a friend and which she later gave to me. I knew then that I had to learn this craft. I found out about a group of hookers in Cobourg and they were happy to introduce me to the craft which I picked up right away and learned very quickly.
“Of course, the fact that my home is a century + old log house, I chose to hook my rugs in a more primitive style.
“At first, of course, I was hooking them for ourselves, then when I realized that friends and family liked them, I made some for family and friends. Some were also given as wedding presents and some were made on commission.”
The piece below captures part of family history:
“My husband’s ancestor Philip Long — a Scottish soldier, a King’s mail courrier — built this establishment at the mouth of Madawaska river on Temiscouata-sur-le-Lac in Cabano, Quebec. This was an inn where travellers would stop overnight on their long trip from Quebec to Fredericton, New Brunswick.”
Every rug has a story.
“I hooked this rug (below) from a photograph which was taken when we first purchased our canoe in 1969 from Chief Dan Sarrazin of the Golden Lake Reserve, the builder of canoes. It is an authentic Algonquin birch bark canoe which is still in our possession.
“About three years ago, we became curious and decided to go back to Golden Lake Reserve with the photograph and see if we could locate the little boy, the Chief’s son, who was about 10 at the time. We did meet with a few people and it finally was the librarian who identified the boy. We were lucky to meet with him and as soon as we showed him the photograph he recognized himself and we had a lovely visit with him. He was then 45 years old.”
As you can imagine, Myrtle’s illustrator Jo Robinson and I are doubly-honoured with both Jessica’s rendition of Myrtle and its inclusion in the OHCG’s annual conference.
“Fabulous, fabulous, fabulous! That is the most brilliant thing! A bit over-excited here, but that really is the most amazing feeling that someone did that.”
Myrtle and other gorgeous hooked rugs from across Ontario will be displayed at the Ottawa Conference & Event Centre, May 4 to 6.
Huge thanks to my dear friend Jessica and the OHCG.
Photos by Jessica Charnock
(Loghouse photo by Hamlin Grange)
62 thoughts on “Myrtle Goes to Ottawa”
Beautiful work! Congratulations, Myrtle!
Yay! Such beautiful work by Jessica — I’m in awe of her talent. Hope you’re doing well, Jo Nell!
Wonderful rugs! And a fitting testament to Myrtle!
Thank you, Sandra. Jessica’s creativity is remarkable.
Wow that is lovely. I bit there are lots of kids out there that would love s Mytle rug!
I agree. And Jessica has informed me that though the rug will be given to me, I am to pass it on to my future grandchildren!
Wow! The rugs are amazing! Thanks for introducing us to Jessica and her fabulous work, Cynthia. I’m happy to see that Myrtle will be back in the spotlight, just where she belongs. 🙂
They really are amazing, Jill. I am always blown away by creative people, and Jessica and her husband Jean are two of the most creative ones I know.
I am honored to know them well,Jean is my brother,Jessica,sister in law…I,m always amazed to see their work…
Me too, Lucie. They are remarkable artists and people Thanks for reading the story.
These are absolutely stunning. love what you’ve done here
The hooked rug medium with its innocent renderings of landscapes and people suits Myrtle perfectly. What a gorgeous tribute to your book.
Thank you, Susanne. I am delighted with this special tribute by Jessica. Some of the best gifts are unexpected.
Jessica’s rugs are wonderful. And Myrtle sure gets around a lot for a turtle! 🙂
She sure does, Brad. Thank you.
Jessica has created such beautiful rugs, and it is wonderful she included Myrtle! It is a gorgeous tribute to your book, Cynthia, and Jo!
It sure is a gorgeous tribute, Lavinia — well said. Jessica is a star.
How lovely – the idea and the rugs! Myrtle is certainly getting around. Especially for a turtle.
You’re right, Margaret. She sure gets around! Will visit you soon. My best wishes.
Oh my goodness, these hooked rugs are absolutely delightful. Myrtle is in very good company!
She is, indeed. And there are other beauties on the OHCG website.
Beautiful! What an honor!
Thank you, Laurie. Such a nice gift from Jessica.
Incredible! So beautiful 😁
Blessings to you Cynthia!
And to you, Lorrie. Thanks for your response.
Completely and absolutely wonderful.
Hearty congratulations to you, to Jo, and to Jessica
Thank you, Derrick. We are all very pleased.
I really like Charnock’s primitive style–the simplicity and joy. Myrtle’s looking good! Such a faithful rendition of the illustration!
From you, my friend, who creates gorgeous textile objects, that’s a great compliment. You talented women impress me.
You talented writers impress me!
Amazing work on the rugs. I’ve always loved hooked rugs and admired those who are so dedicated to creating one. How exciting for Myrtle to be honored in this way. I sent you an email Cynthia when you have time to check for it.
It is exciting to see, Tina. Jessica also made a grand armoire that amazes me whenever I see it.
Wow these are all gorgeous but Myrtle does look awesome. 🌼
Such talent always amazes me. Thanks for your reply.
It’s fabulous – Myrtle come to woolly life.
I like that, Hilary! Woolly life!
Wonderful news! The Myrtle rug is beautiful…and so are all the other creations you showcased here. Myrtle is in good company!
She is in good company indeed, Tiny. Thanks for commenting.
How clever Jessica is! Myrtle looks wonderful on her rug!
Thanks, Clare. Jessica is a wonderful talent and a lovely person.
I hope Myrtle is brushing up on her languages! I can see a need for French, Spanish, Japanese . . . 🙂
I agree. She needs to learn more languages.
Get her a passport😉
Myrtle the turtle great whole group story; although I read it to my own children when they were young!
How exciting that Jessica is going to be sharing Myrtle in such a new and fun way.
I am thrilled and honoured by all the lovely comments. Thanks to Cynthia and Jo who were the inspiration for the rug. I enjoyed hooking it.
And we are all thrilled and honoured to share your story, Jessica. Well done!
well done, Cynthia, so happy for you and the rug is a work of art 🙂
Thank you, Annette. Happy Spring!
Love the Myrtle rug! It must be amazing to see your creation brought to life in so many creative ways!
That rug is amazing. What a terrific honor.
Isn’t it? So kind of Jessica. They take a lot of work. Thanks for visiting, Alys. Will be visiting your blog soon.
Thank you, Cynthia!
What a very sweet rug! 🙂
Wow! Those are amazing rugs, lovely work.
It’s always so wonderful to see so many talented women. Thanks for sharing, Cynthia.
That’s so true. And Jessica is certainly one such.
Myrtle, this is so great and incredible work….congrats!!!