Tag Archives: folk art

Braided Rag Rug

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Alright, so what do we do with A LOT of left over fabric? We use it. We use a yard to make a pillow, or a quarter to make a stuffed animal. So after several suggestions I decided I would try my hand at making the braided rag rug suggested by Crochetycrochetlady. Other than the fact that it was a PAIN IN THE BUTT, I think it’s coming along nicely :).

If I were to ever do this project again, I would use double sided fabric that didn’t fray. It would not only have been finished SIGNIFICANTLY sooner but I wouldn’t have ran out of the 6 spools of green thread that I had to buy so that my strips would have finished edges…and still need to go out and buy more. That is, however, the only expense I had for this project. I already had all of the fabric necessary for the project (unfortunately it didn’t use up nearly enough :P) and I braid like speed demon so no problems there.

So what do you need for this project?

About 5 yards of fabric cut into 1″ strips
A clothes pin
Safety Pins
thread to match your fabric
invisible thread
a sheet of fabric the shape and size of your finished rug

To begin, sew three strips together into a “T.” I stitched up to 12 of my cut strips together at a time so I could spend some time sewing and then time braiding however, in order to do this roll up one of the three tails and secure it with the clothes pin so you don’t end up with a tangled mess on your hands. So braid away. I made an oval rug and it took me a minute to think about it but it made sense that however long you make the center strip is the difference between the length and width of the finished project. So, if you want a 3’x5′ rug you need your center strip to be 2 feet long. Mine was just under three feet long so mine finish project will be roughly 5’x 2′ or 6’x3′ depending on how much I want to do. In order to make such a tight turn for the first couple rounds skip a couple strands in the braid. I know that doesn’t really make any sense but I’ll post a picture tomorrow. I have a book that has an absolutely beautiful diagram of it.

Anyway, after the first couple rounds you don’t need to do any special braiding and can just make a straight regular braid. After I had roughly 52 yards [give or take, I used the very scientific fingertip to nose method of measuring (which I actually measured once and was actually pretty accurate for my arm length)] I wrapped it up and safety pinned it so that I could see about how large my rug is and this is what I ended up with.

That’s Daggett, he stole his sister’s bed and she’s not too happy about it but he’s helping me by holding that corner together. ><

He looks so innocent…BAH has he got you fooled!

Now I’m going to add a little more green around the outside edge because I think I have something like 30 or 40 more strips cut already. Then I should be done. As for size, I think it’s almost 5’x2′. By the time I get the rest of my already cut strips on it’ll be about 5.5’x2.5′. We’ll see how it looks again then.

 

When I do get finished with my braid, I’m going to take my rug sized fabric and finish the edges. Then, I will sew it all together, starting in the center and working clockwise with the invisible thread using the zig-zag stitch.  We work clockwise so the  rug won’t get jumbled up in the sewing machine arm.

I’ll post pictures when I’m done, I just wanted you all to know I wasn’t being a TOTAL bum 😛


Beyond The Picket Fence

Anthropologie Knock Off Bracelet

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Yes, yes I know, carve your own path and be your own person etc… However, imitation is the highest form of flattery and when you see something that seems relatively simple which costs $298.00 (not including shipping) and you feel reasonably sure that you can make it yourself, what would you do? You get out the dremel and make it yourself.

I was visiting my fiance’s family last week and I was browsing the internet one night and came across this bracelet from anthropologie.

It is made out of brass and cotton. That is all. So when my fiance wanted to go to the hobby store to pick up some remote control helicopter parts I had this image in mind as I browsed the art supplies. What did I find but a 1″ x 12″ brass sheet. The anthropologie bracelet is 2.5″ wide but I have itty bitty wrists so I thought that 1″ was plenty wide enough. So now that I’ve been holding on to this piece of brass for about 2 weeks while I was away, I finally came home and am able to use it. This is what I made. I originally had a piece of white ribbon in it but then I found this folksy ribbon that was actually the remnants of what my mother had used on a dressed that I wore as a baby!

I enjoyed making it, I think I made the space between ribbon too wide so I think I’ll make another with only about an inch in between (there’s about an inch and a half there) and I think it’ll look much better.

In order to make it, I simply cut off about a 5.5″ section of brass and marked off two slits so that they were roughly 2.5mm from the edge (width wise) and 5mm from the edge length wise. I then bent the brass so that it would fit my wrist in a “U” shape. After that was done, I marked off another slit about half an inch from the curve, about an inch and a half apart as I mentioned earlier. I got the dremel out and went to work tracing my slit marks with a cutting blade. After snapping a couple blades I got the hang of it and it went smoothly. The brass heats up from all the friction so it’s best to wear gloves or hold it with a pair of pliers. Then I weaved the ribbon through, and ta da!

Happy Crafting,

Captain Neen