Recycle Tutorial: Woven Rag Rug

Recycle your old bed sheet into a lovely woven rag rug.

Recycle your old bed sheet into a lovely woven rag rug.

Picture 1 of 4 (Click arrow for more pictures)

Thank you for all the great feedback for liking my Braided Rag Rug. I understand that not everyone has a sewing machine or/and able to sew, so I created this no-sew version for the non-sewer who like to recycle their bed sheets or de-stash their fabrics to make this feet cozy Woven Rag Rug. This tutorial doesn’t require any loom for weaving; just use a sturdy corrugated carton box from your recycle pile.

I hope everyone can do their part on greening the Earth again and reduce the rubbish that loaded the landfill. By the way, I gave the braided rag rug to my mum and she loves it so much, she is going to dig more old bed sheets out from her storage, which means I will have another bunch of supply to recycle. I need to scratch my head for more stuff to make from them. :)

rag rug from old bed sheet

{CLICK HERE to get the Recycle Tutorial: Woven Rag Rug.}

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191 comments... read them below or add one

  1. Thank you for the quick response!!! Much appreciated! Can’t wait to start!!!! :)

  2. I have a lovely rug. It is woven. My question is about the last task.
    I’m trying to figure out to do the crisscross … and how to tie off.
    What kind of knot did you use to tie off? Square knot…overhand…do I combine strips from side by side warp bunches or just tie one bunch of warp strips.

    When I crisscross…do I start on one side of the rug, sew in a zigzag to the other side and then sew back to the original create an x pattern?
    looking forward to hearing from you!
    I love this rug and have really enjoyed the process!

  3. Perhaps this is the question to ask….does the last weaving row facilitate the tying off of the warp strips? If so, how does the weaving strip interact with the warp strips?

    I keep looking at the edge of your rug and I can’t see how you tied it off, but I love how it looks.

  4. Hi There! I figured out the crisscross row! All I need to do is tie off…and I already asked that question, so I will be patient! and wait….:)

  5. This is a really cute idea for the grandkids.

  6. Can someone explain the crisscross row please!

  7. Pingback:25 Amazing Rugs that You Can Make Yourself Without Breaking the Bank | Buzz + Inspired

  8. it looks great!

    thanks for sharing your tutorial! i set a link and hope you agree.

    best wishes,

  9. So I have been trying to do this rug for an entire day….. the cardboard is not a good thing to use with sheets I have restarted this project a million times today because the cardboard won’t hold that much fabric. Soooooooo frustrated.

    • Perhaps your cardboard is too soft to handle the weaving. In the instruction, you need a “sturdy corrugated cardboard” and not any single thickness cardboard. Hope this helps.

  10. I used plastic core flute (the stuff light weight signs are made out of) a cut a small round hole at the bottom of the slit then clamped it to the table under a light wooden strip. Worked like a million dollars. My mat only took just over an hour to complete.

  11. I read on another reliable site that rugs made from sheets shed pretty badly.

    • Mine still looking very nice and intact even after so many washes for years!!! Perhaps the sheet material that “reliable site” used was not a good one to begin with. The one showing in the picture was from the old bed sheets of more than 30 years ago.

  12. Boy oh boy I love your site. Everything is so easy to use. You have all the great widgets like email, print, and social networking sites. Thank you for all the time you put into showing us your crafts.

  13. Pingback:Great Craft Ideas - March 2014 - Crafts by Amanda

  14. What size rug will 3 king size sheets make?

  15. Hi! Thanks so much for sharing your creations! I absolutely love this, and can’t wait to make this! However, I’m having trouble understanding the beginning! I understand the cardboard and putting the strips in the slits… But after that… I’m lost! Am I taking a strip, not connected to the strips that are in the cardboard, to weave? Thanks for the help!

    • Yes, it is another strip to do the weaving, not from the cardboard. It is just like a normal weaving process where you need a weaving string to weave those in the cardboard. Hope this help in clearing up the instruction.

  16. Will the rug be too small if I make it using old queen size bed sheets?

  17. Wow! What a great idea, can not believe I never thought to use multi-strips to make a woven rug thick, and then weaving with one strip! Wow, total genius!! This will make the project so much better than any that I had imagined to date, thicker, comfy and Way easier, I can hardly wait to try! My kitchen rug is falling apart, perfect timing to find this, now I just got to track down the sheets! Thanks so much for sharing this!

  18. Do I tie a knot in each bunch of fabric stria to keep them from sliding through the cardboard slits?

  19. I tear the strips from old bed sheets, sew them together on my serger sewing machine and use a Q size crochet hook and use single crochet and slip stitches. They can be oval, round or rectangular.

  20. How about toppers for bar stools or seat pads for plastiic chairs
    They look soft

  21. Hi, this rug looks great ! How do you get the form checkered ? I got squares. I tried it a million times already.

  22. These directions are a little confusing. Do you have a video that shows the steps?

  23. Is there any way this pattern could be thinned down and enlarged to make a woven quilt? I know currently it would be to think and heavy as a quilt, but it is just beautiful and think if altered could make a beautiful bed cover. LaWannah

    • Hi LaWannah, I haven’t tried the different sizes of the rag rug but I would think that it should be workable. I would love to get your feed back after you have tested on it. Thank you very much.

  24. I am making my second rug following this method. My first one turned out very well.
    A couple of helpful hints or suggestions from my experience:
    1. My loom was made from the top of a large box…I did not cut the sides off the lid and so my loom sits 6 inches above the floor (or table) lends strength to the loom. It was a box for a workbench.
    2.Instead of cutting 1 inch strips for the warp (last rug I cut/tore 400 strips!) …. I cut/tore strips that were 8 or 9 inches wide and (only had to use 50) and each strip has bunched together quite nicely to make a cushy rug!….It is easy to weave because there is only one bunch of material to go underneath, so you don’t risk missing any of the warp strips.
    love my rug!!

  25. would it be possible to do a ‘tutorial’ on this via youtube? I am just having a hard time understanding your instructions….i learn better when someone shows me. Thanks, just an idea.

  26. Video would be awesome!

  27. I made this rug and I think I followed how to do it correctly but mine came out looking like squares instead of diamond shaped in the weave,, Please tell me what I did wrong because although mine looks ok your is beautiful and I would love for mine to come out like yours :(

  28. The rug is GORGEOUS, and much easier looking than the braided & sewn ones I’ve seen… but I’m a bit dense, so bear with me.

    1. I’m weaving ONE strip of fabric through bunches of 6-12 strips of fabric. Just weaving through the ENTIRE bunch of fabric strips, not individual ones, right?

    2. When my weaving strip reaches the end of the row, do I just leave them there and then tie them together (to each other, 2×2?) once ALL the weaving strips are used? Then tuck the ends in?

    3. Why does your rug seem to show so many different patterns even within a single row (column?)? It’s so pretty that way, but I can’t figure out how the individual strips that are bunched together flip around to make those pattern changes. Does it just happen of its own accord?

    4. Have you tried using mostly plain sheets for the bottom of the 6 or 12-strip bunches, with mostly patterned sheets as the top 2 strips? (Plain are so much easier to find at thrift stores). Does that work as well?

    5. Do you think –to make a longer rug– I could knot 2 strips together in the middle, or would it make the rug have a giant lump part way through? (This might be where actual sewing is required… yeuch.)

    Thanks – I’m so jazzed to try this as a summer project with my daughter!

    • Here is the answers for your questions:
      1. Yes, weave through the whole bunch of strips.
      2. Keep on weaving to make the next row when you reach the end of the row. Join the weaving strip with a new strip and continue to weave until you have finished the entire rug.
      3. I used 3 different patterns of sheets and mixed them up within the bunches, it just came out with this pattern.
      4. I haven’t tried it with plain sheets so I am not sure how it will turn out.
      5. You will get lumps provided you knot is as the following method (I showed this in Braided Rag Rug tutorial):
      When come to the end of a strip and need an extension extension, fold the end of the strip at about 1 -1.5″ from the edge, make a small slit vertically. Do the same to the new strip.
      Put the new strip on top of the existing and pass the tail end through the slit holes.
      Gently pull the strip until is goes all the way to the other side. The end of the existing strip goes through it as well.
      Tug it a little to tighten up the joint.
      And space out the knots so that they are not all in one spot.
      Hope I have explained your questions. If you need further clarification, please feel free to ask again.
      Thank you.


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