This post was originally slated to appear as part of Janice’s series of three guest posts while I was overseas. Unfortunately, however, life happened and Janice fell ill so we were unable to schedule it as planned. It’s too good not to share, so here it is!
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Two of my favourite things about the internet: meeting lovely likeminded people and awesome creative tools like Pinterest. Today’s guest post combines the two, as my blog buddy Janice Bear shows us the real side of Pinterest-inspired projects with, uh, varying degrees of success. – Alicia
Hello again Atypical darlings! It has been a bit since we last talked, but I have one last pinned project to share with you before dear Alicia returns from summer vacation.
I turned my focus once again to my downstairs powder room. This time, instead of covering the walls with paint I covered the floor with rags. Sort of.
I recently read Waste and Want: A Social History of Trash, detailing the change in social mindset from “reuse” to “throw out,” and have since been dying to try my hand at a rag rug. I had previously pinned four different rag rug-esque tutorials so I let me Emily girl choose the final DIY.
I made some changes right off the bat. First, I didn’t buy any “honey buns” of quilting fabric. I’m sure my final rug would have looked a lot better if I had, but I just couldn’t find the sense buying something new when I had so many scraps lying about. I’m not actually sure how long a jelly roll is, nor do I know how many strips of fabric one can get from a four-yard cut. Here’s what I do know. I used a total of 107.3 yards (96.5 meters) of 1.5-inch (3.81 cm) fabric strips. Some strips are from old t-shirts, the lightest grey is an acetate-based lining fabric, a fair bit comes from a curtain valance, and a pair of silk trousers made their way into my rug as well.
If I could do it all over again, I think I’d stick with the cotton jersey (t-shirt) scraps. They don’t fray and they make for much neater braids.
Here’s where I made another change. Instead of cutting all my strips, then braiding, then spiraling, I sort of did it all at once. Vanessa’s tutorial is really well done, but it left me in the dark when it came to corresponding braid length to rug circumference. I was going for an ombre effect and I didn’t want my color sections to be too wide or too narrow. In the end, I think my white section is much too wide (10in/25.4cm) and my darkest grey far too narrow (.25in/.63cm), but I’m going to blame that on the nature of crafting.
To make a long story short; I cut strips, I joined strips, I braided, I rolled, and I sewed. Repeat. I really recommend joining your fabric strips the way Vanessa demonstrates in her tutorial. Her way is so much better than just using a square knot.
Oh, I also had a lot of help.
And a fair amount of beta testing.
In the end, I had an acceptable rag rug. Not lovely, but acceptable.
But, of course, there was a problem. The rug, designed to math my (unfinished) bathroom, doesn’t work in the intended space. It is too big to fit in front of the toilet, and obstructs the door if laid in front of the vanity. I suppose it would work as a kitty mat, though… In all, I declare this pin plausible for all skill levels, and one that will improve with practice.
It seems as though I just said “hello,” and I must already say goodbye. For now, anyway. Thank you all for suffering my dribble for the past several weeks. I have very much enjoyed being here, but I will be delighted to soon be reading sweet Alicia’s posts once again. If, however, you miss me, feel free to stop by the blog or my many, many pinboards.
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About the guest poster: