By Ricky LaCour
The City has been invaded, yet again by the ladies of the Red Stick Rug Hooking Group of Southern Louisiana for the 2nd Annual Hooker Convention, hosted by the Church Street Inn.
Ladies from Mississippi, Texas, and Louisiana all gathered this week to work on individual projects and share tricks of their trade to help master their craft even further.
“I’m so excited this year,” said Gayle Soileau, director of the Red Stick Rug Hooking Group. “I think we have a good group this year, and they all do such amazing work.”
Each day since they arrived, these ladies have fueled up with breakfast, stocked up on supplies, and hooked away the hours of the day; taking a break as they needed.
“There are only two ways to pull these hookers away from a project when they’re in a grove, good food and good wine,” said Charles Soileau, Gayle Soileau’s husband and resident group cheerleader in charge of hospitality and happy hour.
The Inn opened its doors to the public April 11 for a showcase of the amazing work these ladies have produced over the years and to shine light on the projects they’re currently working on.
There were many who came to view the ladies work. These included a few of the local downtown merchants and a visit from Mayor Lee Posey.
Surprised by his appearance the ladies were appreciative that Posey stopped by to show his support.
“When I received a call about what was going on, I knew I had to come and see it for myself,” Posey said. “Theses ladies make rug hooking look fun. This is a fun group.”
The group consist of ladies that have been stripping wool and hooking rugs for over 20 years. Most of them have grown to know and love one another over the years from attending Hook-Ins similar to this one all across the country.
They started coming for the experience and continue to return because of the connections and friendships made.