Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Rag Rug Weaving Tutorial and Tips

Hi, Everyone! I'm back again with the two recently finished Rag Rugs. . . This time, I have a tutorial on turning at the end of a row and a few other  tips I picked up along the way. . . .
So, this is mostly a post for Rag Ruggers and Rag Rugging Wanna-Bees. . . .or for those with a curiosity about this fun Folk Art.

Without any further chattering, I'll start sharing! Click on any of the photos for a larger view.

A Short Tutorial on Turning at the End of the Row:
Turning around and starting back at the end
of the row can be confusing.
Believe me, I know. . . .I still have to "think" to get the steps right. . . .

Here we are, at the end of the row--
the last two warps remain--weaving to the right.
Remember to treat the last warp and the metal rod as one. . . .
Left strip over right, under last warp and rod. . . . 

Hold that strip out straight so you don't get confused. . . .


With the strip held straight, take the now left strip over,
around and back through--
 between the rod strip and the second warp. . . .
Pull tight. . . .
Now, you're ready to weave back toward the left--
right strip (the one sticking out to the side) over left. . . .
under and up between the second and third warp strip. . . .
continue to the end.
When you reach the left rod, use the same technique--
but, of course this time it's right over left until you get turned around.
Handy Tip on making the last two rows simpler to weave

The last two rows are always hard to weave for me. In the past, I used a crochet hook to pull the strips through. One day, I was struggling with the hook, the strip kept coming off, and out of frustration, I took a large bobby pin out of my hair and used it like a giant needle. . . .

It worked!
I now use a large bobby pin on the end of each strip--
much, much faster.

A Tip on finishing the back.

I've found that I don't like knotting the strips in back when finishing off the rug. Especially with denim, I end up with a big bump. Recently, I've finished by weaving the ends through a couple of back loops.  If I think they might work themselves out,  I tack them with a needle and thread. Then I can cut the ends off and not worry about the tails coming loose.

 The Fringe Option

To add fringe to your rugs. . .
Once you remove the rug from it's loom, the warp loops
 on the ends are fairly well exposed.
 Sometimes I use those loops to add fringe.
Again, use a large bobby pin, loop strip onto bobby pin
 and run the fringe through the loop from the left front side. . . .
My strip is 1" X 17".

Remove the bobby pin. . . .Pull ends through fringe strip loop. . . .

Pull tight. . . .Continue across the rug ends.

With each rug you weave, you'll learn your own shortcuts and preferences. . . .As long as you stick to the basics, there's really no set rules. . . .Experiment and have fun!

In case you missed any of the previous Rag Rug posts:
Denim Rag Rug on the Farmhouse Table
I'm Weaving with a New Rag Rug Loom
Rag Rugs: A Delta Folk Art
Rag Rug Inspiration

If you wish to order a loom, please shop at:
Our Old Country Store

Here's a sneak peek at one of the little hot pads I've been working on. . . .Isn't it cute?
We'll have a giveaway soon for the loom. . . .Don't miss it!
Happy Rag Rugging, Everyone!

. . . from my farmhouse to yours. . .


  1. Well, now! You've made that look quite easy.
    I'm sure it is easy/simple...but work none the less. You do fantastic craftsmanship! Pat

  2. I just love the look and color of these. Do not understand it all, but I still like the finished product.
    Farmhouse hugs,

  3. Great tips and pictures! Oh that potholder size is too cute......

  4. So pretty! I was just saying the other day that I'd love to have a rag rug at our back door... so folksy and washable!! Thanks for this!

  5. You really made some cheerful rag rugs. I love them. I had an Aunt that made these two, but hers were a little different. I really think the denim is a great idea! Thanks for the great tutorial. maybe I will try it one day.
    Blessings, Susie

  6. Thanks for the tips!
    Maybe someday I will have time to try rug making! Lol!

  7. It may take awhile to get to it, but rag rug weaving is now on my bucket list!

  8. You are just cranking out those rugs Dru. I love the lovely blues.

  9. love these! and your tutorials make it look so easy...i've seen these made with tshirt rags. i've been wanting to try it with the kids old sports t's...for some reason i can't throw them out or goodwill them and i can't sew to quilt a tshirt quilt.

  10. I have just completed my first rag rug using this technique that I learned from a book. I have previously used a floor loom to make denim rugs and table runners, so this was a fun project to try using broadcloth. After completing my rug, I decided to go to the internet to see who else was enjoying this, and I stumbled on your fun! I enjoyed your blogs and would love to follow what else you are up to...from one farm lady to another.

    1. Where did you find a book? I've looked for a book but can't find one on the net?

  11. Your handmade woven rugs are simply beautiful. I grew up with my mother saving every scrap of cloth and crocheting rugs for my kitchen. When the last one wore out I was sad. My daughter surprised me one year by learning the secrets of rug making from my sister and made me two new beautiful kitchen rugs. It's so nice to see other carry on traditions from the past. Kudo's to you.

    Reuzeit Emporium

  12. HI...I was wondering what width you cut the denim strips at for the rugs/placemats??


  13. I wonder if you have thoughts about using wool fabric. I have yards of wool - was going to braid it Years ago! I completed a cotton rug and love it. I did find that I will secure the long side rod in a couple of places as I warped the rods as I tightened the rows. The final rug has an hour glass shape, but I love it!
    Thanks, Cyndi

  14. What is the purpose of the metal bars on each side of loom with the eye hooks .. please email me st

  15. I just started learning how to loom three days ago I have a a problem, I'm not sure how to properly add in a new Color correctly

  16. I can't find anyone to explain how to end the bottom and top so I don't have the loose looking ends. One lady said , pull one loop thru another until the end then tie the first piece you started with??? I really don't care for the slightly loose ends.


Welcome to the Farm! And, thanks so much for all your comments. I read each and every one of them. . .and, each one is truly appreciated. My friends are always welcome. . .