The Rugs Beneath Her Feet

The floor in my cabin is painted plywood--painted grey, with bits of the weird flesh-tone it was previously painted showing through on the worn parts.  I don't mind the rough, mottled look, but it's chilly on the feet, even with socks or moccasins on, and even though it isn't even properly cold out yet.  The cheap and easy (if time consuming) solution is to make some rag rugs.

On Tuesday I hit up the thrift store and the free store at the dump, and brought home some old sheets to use for the project.  I did some googling and settled on the "toothbrush" or "Amish knot" method, mostly using these videos for instruction, with some reading from an assortment of random websites to add some theory.  I opted for a toothbrush rag rug versus a braided one because I didn't want to have to do any sewing, although really the toothbrush method is sewing--it's a buttonhole stitch repeated over and over again--using the rag strips as your thread.

I have completed one small rug already.  One bedsheet (queen or double, I am not sure which) yielded a round rug with a 20 inch diameter (roughly), to which I added a border using strips from a bedskirt.  It turned out a little wonky: it doesn't sit exactly flat.  I made two mistakes: I didn't do enough increases (or increase evenly), and then switched the material I was using for the inner "cord" when I got to the border.

Attempt two is going much better.  I am using two sheets for this one.  I am using this funky jungle print sheet to make the inner cord and the occasional accent stripe:

While this pretty floral sheet will form the main pattern of the rug:

It's going well so far.  I increased really agressively in the first few rounds, and made sure to do so evenly all around, so it is very even, flat and regular-looking.

It's not quite like getting to go to Ikea, but it is rather more satisfying. 

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