A bit of American Folk Art charm, the rug is hand crafted from recycling old wool blankets. The blankets are cut or ripped into strips between 1.5 to 1.75 inches wide. With a simple braid and using the rug braiding methods of this old-age craft these strips eventually become one long braid, coiled and joined, creating a reversible and very durable rug. Oval, square or heart shaped a braided rug is a simple craft – a good way to get started into crafting or broadening one’s craft talents, trying something new. The process is quite easy and when recycling 100% wool blankets or wool cloth remnants such as those from wool suits, skirts or scarves my cost was minimal. Naturally, one needs the wool (I found mine at various thrift stores). It has been said braided rugs can be made using cotton fabric, t-shirts or even plastic bags. What is shared here is based on the instruction I was given and using 100% wool. I am happy to say that I am near completion, ready and awaiting to taper off and finish the rug.
There are several books available to help get started or the web is ready and waiting for a search should the urge to create a braided rug of your own. Fairly new to this craft I can only share what was graciously shared with those in a rug braiding group. There I was instructed following the guidelines in a booklet titled, Let’s Braid by Marie Griswold : How to Make an Oval Rug. Along with the wool, one needs to obtain 3 Braid-Aids, a Lacer (the flat curved tip needle) and cotton lace cord. A braid clamp is also used though I personally used a large clamp from my husband’s studio.
© 2013 Debra S. Walling
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