Friday, April 5, 2013

How to Make Your Own Rag Rug This Weekend.

Hi, You Crafty People, welcome to our little blog. Come with me. I want to share something new with you. Well new to me anyway.

This week I am featuring a DIY Rag Rug. 
Now let's take a look and imagine the possibilities.

Rag Rug Inspiration

I can’t remember when I decided to try my hand at making a rag rug – suffice it to say it has been a very long time.

Seeing all these wonderful crafts on the net has inspired me to get busy. And it just so happened that I was going through my granddaughters clothes, removing items that are too small or too stained or have rips when it hit me – I can use these to make my rug.

I have the motivation. I have the material (t-shirts.) I have the right tools (my hands and a big crochet hook.) Let’s get started!

Cutting The Material Into Strips

My first challenge was to figure out how to get the longest strips possible from the garments. The fewer joins the better – I think so anyway. Joins can be lumpy.

The first step is to cut across the shirt from armpit to armpit in a straight line through both layers.

Cut 1 ½” strips horizontally across the shirt 
through both layers but be sure to not cut all the way across. Stop about three inches before the end of the opposite edge. 

Open up shirt so you can see the whole uncut edge. 
Cut diagonally from the second row to the first row only through the top layer. 

Continue cutting diagonally until you have completed the whole piece and you have one long continuous strip. 

Joining the Rag Strips

I didn’t join all the strips at once. I choose the next strip as I finish crocheting the previous strip. This gave me the freedom to choose the best colour and texture in comparison to the strips already crocheted into the rug. 

My Granddaughters’ clothes are very colorful and they actually coordinate well together with the pinks, purples, blues and whites. Very pretty.

This is how I joined the strips. 

I cut a small vertical slit near the end of the first strip (blue). I make it just big enough to get my crotchet hook through. 

I cut a small vertical hole on the second strip (pink). 

Push your crochet hook through the hole in the first strip(blue). 

Push your crochet hook through the hole in the second strip(pink). 

Pull the second strip(pink) through the hole in the first (blue) strip. 

Now pull the second (pink) strip through the hole in the second strip – pull all the way through. 

Pull tight. A nice neat join that won’t ever come apart. And a smaller lump in your rug than if you tied it. 

Decide Which Type of Rag Rug to Make

Now I know there are many ways to make a rag rug so I had to decide which style I was going to make. 

  • I could braid the material strips together then sew the braids together forming a circular rug. 
  • I could weave the strips together in a make shift loom. 
  • I could crochet around the strips with yarn
  • or I could actually crochet the material strips. 

I decided to crochet the material strips to make my rug. I like crocheting and sewing pieces together seemed a little too tedious for me. I also thought that crocheting the rug would make it more durable.

Crocheting My Rag Rug 

  1. I started by chaining five. 
  2. Joined it to make a circle. 
  3. Single crochet into each loop. 
  4. Insert additional stitches as required making rounds. 
  5. Too many stitches will leave a ripple. 
  6. Too few stitches will cause the rug to curl up. 
  7. Continue making rounds until desired rug size is acquired. 
  8. Tie off tail and pull tight. 

Ta Dah! My Completed Rag Rug

Yep it’s that easy. I can’t believe I finally made a rag rug. After all these years of just thinking about it. Well I actually have the time right now.
I can see the clothes my granddaughters wore when they were four years old, woven into this rug. 

This colourful rag rug would look fantastic in a little girl’s room. As I was crocheting , I pictured a little girl getting out of bed, her little piggies stepping down on this pretty rug that I made with her in mind. 

I already started my next rag rug.

Creating and fun are always in fashion.


The hardest part of it was cutting the long strands. The scissors gave me blisters when I made the first rug, but now they've toughened up and can take the hours and hours of abuse. Maybe not that many hours.

The second rug I made was from sheets. I did't have to cut the whole length, just start it then tear it. My granddaughters enjoyed helping me this part. They took turns pulling and walking to rip the strip off.

I know you can use just about any kind of material to make a rag rug. I think I read somewhere that a lady made one out the upholstery material from her old couch. That's fun - ripping the material off my old furniture. I did it years ago to reupholster my couch and chair. Silly me just threw all that wonderful material away when I could have made a rug. I wasn't a hoarder back then. LOL

Have you tried your hand making a rag rug? I really enjoyed making this rug. In fact I am already working on my third rug. 

Well, thanks for stopping by. I hope my instructions were clear enough.

If your interested, stop by one or both of our Etsy Shop, Little Shop of Treasures or check out this free printable calendar.

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Before you go, I would like to share this wonderful news with you. Over eighty posts were submitted to Bowdabra's Saturday Crafty Showcase. This one was chosen with 13 others by the Bowdabra Design team as their favorite Eco-Friendly Projects to be featured on Friday's Showcase.

Thanks again for visiting, and have a fantastic day.


  1. How neat! I had no idea you could make on of these at home! I cannot wait to give it a try! Hi! Love your blog! New follower from the Lovin the Weekend Hop! Alaina from Bullock's Buzz!

    1. Hi Alaina, Thanks for your kind words. I hope you enjoy making a rag rug as much as I did. I think it is especially cool if you are using material that has some sort of sentimental value.

  2. This is REALLY cool. I wish I knew how to crochet!

    1. I could add instructions on how to crotchet the rug if that is helpful.

  3. Love the rug! My mother in law made us one - actually, it was for my husband before we got married... ;-) Thanks for linking up at the Pinterest Power Party!


    1. Hi Danielle, Thanks for hosting the Pinterest Power Party. See you next week.

  4. Hi Darlene,

    Thanks for visiting from Sew Crafty Angel link party and for nice comment. I always wanted to make a rag rug. Maybe now I can actually do it! Thanks for sharing.



    1. Hi Reecea, thanks for the pin and lovely comment. I am following your blog too!

  5. Congrats, Darlene!
    Your tutorial was picked and featured by our Bowdabra Designers in our Eco Friendly collection today from last week's Crafty Showcase.

    Stop in to see your feature. See you tomorrow at the new Crafty Showcase!

    Susie @Bowdabra

    1. Hi Susie, wow, thanks so much for choosing my post to feature in the Eco Friendly Collection. I look forward to linking up this week.

  6. Thanks for linking up with the Meet & Greet Blog Hop! :)

  7. Hi Darlene,
    Thanks for sharing your awesome rug with my blog friends. It is really awesome. Hope you will visit us again next weekend and link up.

    1. Hi Angel,
      Thanks for hosting. I look forward to linking up next weekend.
      See you then, Darlene

  8. Great idea!
    Thank you so much for sharing this on Tutorial Thursdays Linky Party.
    I look forward to seeing what you share with us all this week :)
    Marigolds' Loft

  9. A great idea and the result is great too! Thank you Darlene:)

    1. Thanks Elisabeth. I have made three more, each one so different but all look so nice.

  10. I've always wanted to try and make one of these but they all seemed so confusing (and looked liked they took forever). You explain it so well and make it seem so easy I might just give it a try too! I'm currently cleaning out my daughters' clothes too so now they won't go to waste. Thanks for sharing this, LOVE IT!

    1. Hi Meg, I think I picked the easiest way to make a rag rug. It actually takes longer to cut the strips than it does to crochet them together.

  11. this is awesome...great idea, thanks for sharing on pin it mondays :)

    Claudia @

    1. Hi Claudia, thanks for the compliment. By the way, I love your blog.

  12. I LOVE rag rugs and really enjoyed reading this. I never knew how to make one...

  13. Hi Bonnie, I love rag rugs too now. I love making them too.

  14. Great Blog!! And I need to try this project. I am a beginner crafter and am looking for projects that are simple, easy, and fast. (I have a little one.) I found you on the "This Momma's Meandering Mondays" BlogHop. <3

    1. Hi Paula, this is a fun and quick project. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.