It’s pretty quiet around the old homestead this time of the year. My next show isn’t until April, so it’s a good time to take stock and try new things.
As much as I love rug hooking, sometimes you just want to try something different. For the last few months, I’ve been experimenting, going outside my rug hooking roots to flex my creative muscles. Last summer, I tried hooking with T-shirts, adding a fun new twist to my craft. T-shirt rugs are a fun challenge, low cost for materials, and best of all, they’re machine washable!
Then I tried my hand at punch hooking, something I’d not tried since the sixth grade. A total blast!
And this month, I’ve been having fun with twined rugs. Kind of a rug weaving craft, a “warp” of cotton strips is wrapped over a special wooden frame or loom (below, left). Then strips of fabric, like sheets, are twined over the warp (below, right). So one strip is wrapped around one warp, and the other strip is wound around the next warp. In this way, you continue to twist the “weft” strips over each other, through the warp.
Picture it this way, instead of passing a weft strip through the warp, over and under each warp from one side of the rug to the other (like with regular weaving), two strips are wrapped around the warp, one strip at a time. The effect is a lot like braided rugs. As with most textile crafts, there is a lovely zen feeling when you twist the strips across the row, then go back the other way.
You start working from one end, then at some point you turn the frame over and work from the other end. Little by little, you keep on building until your rows meet somewhere in the middle. You pull the remaining strips through the weft strands to keep them in place and you’re done!
After twining with cotton sheets, I tried another rug using felted sweaters for the weft! I make lots of things out of felted sweaters (jackets, purses, hats, etc.) so I always have lots of scraps to use up. I warped the frame with acrylic yarn that time, so the whole thing would be washable.
Here’s the finished sweater-felt rug!
All you need to make a twined rug is the frame. You can get a lovely adjustable frame at http://ouroldcountrystore.blogspot.com/2017/04/new-adjustable-rag-rug-loom.html.
Blog subscribers can get 20% off the Birds of a Feather design or custom kit for the month of February. Check out these ridiculously low prices here!
And don’t forget that for every $50 you spend with Little House Rugs between now and November 25, 2018, you will be entered to win the Antique Flower Rug (a $480 value!) (so if you spend $100, you’ll be entered twice, $150, three times, etc.)
Happy Hooking everyone!