Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Braided Rag Rug

I think I mentioned that I made alot of clothes this year for the family out of some really nice wool knits.  Some were interlock, some jersey, some ponte knit.  All of them were very, very nice.  And I decided I couldn't bear to throw a single scrap away.

What to do?

Well, a rag rug, of course.  Isn't that the thought uppermost in everyone's mind.  No? Well, I AM weirder than most, I suppose.

My mother always crocheted rugs.  Where I grew up there were numerous textile factories, and there were always overruns of rolls and rolls of binding.  Usually about 1 inch wide, they were perfect for crocheting rugs and my mom made big ones--one long hallway runner was probably about 4 feet wide and a good 8-10 feet long. 

She showed me how when I was little, and I did make a few.  But I never enjoyed crocheting as much as she did and it's one of the few textile arts that I just. don't. do.

But I do like throw rugs.  Husband makes jokes about them being skateboards. I can't really argue--they do kind of have to be fastened down somehow or else they're hazardous to your health.  But they're so pretty.  And they keep the floor warm.  And they're fun to make!

Husband will just have to learn to be more careful.  :o)

Anyhow, I had all these scraps leftover from cutting out shirts and leggings and things.  Alot of them were already in long strips, some of them had to be cut, though.  And then I braided them together into a great long rope.

Initially, when I started stitching, I used the zigzag on my sewing machine.  I thought I was so clever and that I was going to have a rug in no time. And I was right.  Sort of.  Right up until it came time to stitch the portion of the rope that I had braided some scraps of viscose/nylon/lycra ponte knit into.  My machine revolted. My vintage machine rebelled.  My computerized machine sat in the corner, sulking and wailing.  My trusty compatriots abandoned me in my hour of need.

I broke down and handstitched it.

Wasn't as bad as I thought it would be.  Didn't really enjoy crawling around on the floor for the 4 or 5 hours it took, but I didn't hate it either. 

Now, I have a rug.  Granted, it's a little wonky in the center portion.  A rope made of wool knit stretches alot more than you think it might.  So that center portion got a little stretched in construction, but I think it'll settle down after it's been walked on a bit.

I've been told the colors don't go together.  My response?

It's like the forest. There's lots of rocks and dirt and dead leaves and bark that are gray and black and brown and bright green leaves overheard.  And then there's flowers which are pink and purple and red.

Don't tell me my colors don't go together.  If it works for Mother Nature, it works for me.

I haven't finished off the end yet.  I still have dreams of making it bigger. I just ran out of scraps.  But it's not like there won't be more in the future.  Scraps, I mean.

And I'm patient.

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