How to Make Rag Area Rugs (Recycle Old Clothes)
Did you know that rag area rugs have been around for hundreds of years and were crocheted with fabric strips cut from old cloths?
At that time, it was a necessity because old clothes were not just thrown away, or given out. Every old bit of anything a family owned, was recycled and put to good use for the family.
Rag rugs are a traditional and somewhat classic hand woven craft, and as in the days of old, today, a rag area rug can be made from old unwanted clothes.
This is a great way to recycle your old garments, including old jeans, blankets, bed sheets, and even old leather, and its quite simple to make, sometimes in just a few days.
Recycling - Old Clothes Can Be Put To Good Use
Those old unused clothes, strips of fabric, unwanted apparel and such stuff can be made useful instead of being thrown away.
If you want to give old clothes to charity, you can also give them nice handmade rag rugs made from the ones that aren't good enough to wear anyway and would have been totally discarded.
Materials You Can Use to Make Rag Rugs
The best rag area rug has a good mix of fabric in a planned colour coordinated finish. A variety of materials can be used to make a rag area rug, materials such as:
- Old jumpers
- Dresses and general apparel
- Old unused ribbons
- Leather or any faux leather products
- And even unused and tougher types of plastic bags.
One can also purchase cheaply priced yards of different types and textures of materials from any of the local fabrics shops. Wherever one may live, cheap fabric shops and flea type markets abound. You will find there are the left over strips from their bales of fabrics that will make a beautiful rag area rug.
How to Make Rag Area Rugs
To make a rag area rug is simple and straightforward and if you are able to do crochet then you are good and ready to go. The most basic and simple technique of crocheting will suffice. If you are a beginner and wish to perfect the art of rag rug weaving, you may find this first comprehensive book on weaving rag rugs quite helpful.
However, if you are a beginner wishing to perfect the art of rag rug weaving, you may find this first comprehensive book on creating rag area rugs quite helpful.
The things you require to make a rag area rug are easy to find items, and you probably have them lying around the house or tucked away somewhere, deep in the closet.
First, assemble these items:
- Needle and thread (or a sewing machine if you possess one).
- A pair of good sewing scissors
- A crochet hook (the US size Q is perfect for the job), large size.
- Old unwanted or discarded clothes, blankets, linen, jeans or whatever form of material you may find around the home.
Using a large crochet hook allows stitches to be relaxed. It makes it easy to unravel if you hate the end result and want to do it all over again. If you think you've made a mistake, just unravel it and begin again. You will eventually get it right.
In the alternative, you may get a rag rug making kit that has every tool you'll need, including burlap back cloths.
And when you are pleased with your results, iron the rug you just made with a steam iron, especially if you find the edges are ruffling.
Video Tutorial - No Sew Rag Area Rug
Video Tutorials - Round Doormat
If You Can Crochet With Yarn, You Can Crochet With Strips Of Fabric
If you can crochet with yarn, then you can crochet a rag area rug with fabric strips. It’s the same basic crocheting principle.
Don’t worry too much about perfection because the idea of a rag area rug is not to achieve the intricate look of a machine woven carpet.
Remember that these are homemade rugs, and are supposed to be a work of art, so it's not necessarily intended to be perfect.
Other Crafts You Can Make With Discarded Clothes
Asides using a rag area rug as a floor area rug, there are a variety of other things you can make and use, or give out as gifts, using the rag rug making system.
People recycled discarded sheets and clothes to make some of the following:
- Tote bags
- Tea cosies
- Wall hangings
- Chair pads
- Vintage look tablecloths
Rag Rug Making - A Perfect Craft for Kids and the Elderly Too
When the kids are on vacation and want something exciting to do, why not give them this fun task to make a beautiful rag area rug for their bedroom, or for any other space in the house.
Better still, they can earn money by making these beautiful area rugs and sell them inexpensively to family and friends.
The elderly that have so much time to themselves can easily take up rag area rug making crafts, producing pretty rag rugs as gifts to orphanages, friends and family. Making a rag area rug can even earn them a little income on the side.
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