About a year ago we decided to rip the carpet out of our house. It’s probably the best decision we have made! I hated the carpet in our house for so long! It was always dirty, no matter how much I vacuumed, and carpet with kids and a dog is basically a recipe for stains. It looked terrible and I was reasonably sure that it wasn’t so great for our health either. Replacing the carpet with laminate means I also got the chance to dabble in rugs. I actually love rugs, the ability to swap them out seasonally is highly appealing. Sometimes I want a nice bright color pop rug and sometimes I want something a bit more subtle! Of course, this also gave me the opportunity to look into making my OWN rugs and how can I resist such a crafty project? With a bit of research, I settled on this DIY rag rug.
A rag rug is simple, inexpensive and requires nothing but time to complete. If you can tie a knot and cut strips of material then you can complete this project! It’s the perfect home decor DIY project for everyone.
Learn Something New with Kristin
Feature 10 – DIY Rag Rug
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What is a Rag Rug?
While many rugs are created by braiding or weaving a rag rug involves nothing but tying a knot. Rag rugs are created using strips of material (generally cut from ‘rags’ hence the name!) The material can be sourced from old curtains, towels or even T-Shirts and baby clothes! Really the sky is the limit and the patterns you can make are entirely up to your imagination!
The art of making a rag rug was commonly seen in many households up until the 20th century when they typically used old sacking as a backing. It makes sense, as families back then had to be frugal and reusing scraps of material to make the home cozier was a great idea. Recently it has started to regain popularity with the DIY home decor crowd.
Rag Rug – What materials do I need?
A rag rug is an incredibly simple project and as such requires only a few basic items. This makes it a perfect project for families on a budget!
- A Backing Material – Although you can find these at many craft stores I actually found mine at the, wait for it …Dollar Tree! It was labeled as non-slip rug backing but I see that as a bonus really as it means my rug isn’t going to slip around on the floor. Any rug pad material that will allow you to tie strips of material to it will work.
- A variety of material scraps – Keep in mind the colors you want to use but otherwise, the material can come from almost anything! For my rug, I used half an old curtain, a pillowcase, an old towel that had a hole in it and some dishrags I bought at the Dollar Tree to add some extra green.
- Scissors – Anything sharp enough to cut through your material will work, though if you want super fancy straight cuts you can also but one of these.
Rag Rug – How do you do it!
Creating a rag rug is about as simple as finding the supplies! In fact, it’s probably one of the easiest try something new projects that I’ve done. Technically it counts as a Dollar Store project too! In my books, this makes it a double win!
Consider the pattern and colors that you want to use and source your material. I picked greens and neutrals with a hint of red to match my kitchen. I also picked a fairly simple striped pattern because it was the first time I have tried to make a rug. Really your only limits are your own imagination here!
Cut your strips of material. If you are going to be creating a pattern then it’s probably best to keep the different colors separated for easier use later on. Keep the size of your backing grid in mind when cutting your strips. Smaller grids will only support thinner strips while larger ones will require wider strips for a full looking rug.
Start creating your pattern. I expect you could use a sharpie to draw a more complicated design onto your rug backing material but since I was only doing stripes I started at the edges, figured out the middle and then worked my way in. To attach the strips of material simply loop them through two holes and tie the ends together in a knot! So simple!
Continue to add strips of material until your pattern is completed. Whether or not you have to tie strips of material to every strand of your rug backing will depend highly on your backing. Since my backing had holes that were quite small I found I could skip two holes in between each strip and still have a full rug. This saved me a great deal of material! You might have to experiment a little bit to find the sweet spot with yours!
Hopefully, before creating your rug you decided on the perfect home for it. If not then now is a great time. Display your rug with love because you made it and it took time and thought and it’s worth taking pride in, just like every creative thin you do!
I love the idea of a rag rug. I think the best part about them is they are all unique, plus you get to get more use out of older items. Yours turned out great. I need to make one of these as we have some t-shirts that are getting worn out but I don’t want to toss them.
It would be a great use for old t-shirts!
This definitely looks time consuming but so damn cool! I absolutely love the style and pattern of this and I think this is such an amazing project to help left over materials, too. Cost effective and environmentally friendly – I love it! Will definitely be trying this myself.
It was kind of time-consuming but I love the way it turned out enough that I didn’t mind so much! Plus you can easily do it while watching Netflix and such so it’s not too terrible! You should definitely give it a try!
This looks so good! I would have never considered making my own, nor would I have had a clue where to start but this turned out so well! I love the pattern of it and it’s a great use of leftover materials. Such a great idea x
So glad you liked it! It was so much simpler then I thought it would be and I loved that I got to use up old material that otherwise would have been thrown away!
I’ve heard of a lot of different DIY projects but this is my first experience of a DIY rug! I love this idea as a way to reduce waste- I think I’d probably just go with one colour (and could do that as I wear a lot of black haha) to save time but your stripes look great!
Soph – https://sophhearts.com/ x
I did think about using one color because I was worried about trying to figure out a pattern but the old curtains I had were stripped and matched a lot of the old towels so stripes it was! It wasn’t too terrible to figure out I did the colored stripes first to make sure I had enough material for what I wanted and then filled in the gaps with the base cream color that I knew I had a lot of!
The fact you got the base from the Dollar Tree makes it all the better. It came out so pretty. Has it held up well?
It has! Surprisingly so actually. It has survived 2 dogs laying on it, a stint as the rug beneath the sink while doing dishes (its super comfy to stand on), and is now part of our new sunroom after the move! I take it outside and shake it out once a week or so and it still looks the same as when I finished it.