How to Make a Rag Rug by Everyday Art

Happy Labor Day! For a fun change of pace today, I have the cute girls from Everyday Art here to show us How to Make a Rag Rug tutorial. I love their super easy technique! This is definitely a great craft for fabric scraps. {don’t ya love scrap busters?} enjoy! -Linda

DIY Rag Rug

How to Make a Rag Rug Tutorial

rag rug tutorial

Hi, my name is Jaime and my sister-in-law Emily and I are craftaholics. :)

We like to share our creations on our blog, Everyday Art because we think that everyone likes to create a little art everyday.

We’re excited to be here at Craftaholics Anonymous® today sharing one of our recent projects.

Introducing, the Pink-and-Blue Rag Rug:

how to make rag rugs

And I must say, phew!, what a long, loooong time this project took me! Many hours sitting watching shows/listening to audio books while working on this puppy. But, I have to say, even knowing how many hours (days, weeks, months) I’ve put into this, I’m so pleased with how it turned out. I love it. :)

rag rugWe recently moved and I put my two oldest girls in a shared bedroom. One loves blue, the other pink. So what to do but make a pretty blue-and-pink room for them? After completing the blue-and-pink quilts for their bunk beds, painting the walls blue, and hanging pink curtains, I tackled the rag rug as my next project.

As you can see, it turned out cute, coordinating, and much loved by the two girls.

The rug really was simple to make, just time-consuming. Basically, I used strips of fabric (1000s of them) cut about 1 inch x 5 inches. I stuffed these strips into a non-skid rug mat and voila! No need to even bother tying the strips.

You can see the rug mat in this image and about how often I skipped holes. Obviously, I certainly could have made it more full by skipping less holes in the non-skid mat, but there really wasn’t a need to make it any more full. I used leftover fabric from their quilts plus other scraps and purchased fabrics.

The rug has been in the girls’ room for about 2 weeks now and it easily fluffs up with a little shake and appears to be holding up well. With projects like this, the personalizing possibilities are truly endless–any color scheme would be fun.

Ready to make one yourself?

Rag Rug Tutorial


Here’s an image-tutorial on how to make a rag rug:

rag rug tutorial

I hope your rug goes well! I think this was one of my all-time-favorite handmade items.

DIY Rag Rug tutorial. These are easy to make and add awesome texture to a room!Thanks Linda for having us. :)

Lots of love from the gals at Everyday Art!

 Follow along on Pinterest for more Crafting Ideas and Inspiration! 

Share and Enjoy

  • Facebook
  • Email
  • Twitter
  • Pinterest
  • StumbleUpon
  • Google Plus
Hi! I'm Linda, the craft addict behind Craftaholics Anonymous®, a craft blog. Crafting is cheaper than therapy, right? When not crafting, I can be found chasing my 2 small {but very energetic!} boys or playing with my new baby girl. Or shoe shopping... because you can never have too many shoes! Happy crafting! ♥

Join the Conversation

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  1. 101

    I am in the midst of this project, I am already about 3 hours into it and it is really looking great!
    Can’t wait for the finished product! I am creating this for my baby niece’s room, I think it will brighten up the nursery. Thanks for posting this blog!

  2. 102

    Hey! I really want to make one of these in a black and red plaid theme. Would flannel work or would it flatten out too quickly?
    Thanks for your help!

  3. 103

    Love your ideas!

  4. 104

    I just love this rug and I want to make it!! How big are the strips of fabric?

  5. 105

    I love this rug idea, but just a few questions:

    how are you anchoring the strip of fabric after pulling through the allotted space [especially important for when laundering]?
    what is the size of each strip?
    which fabric works best: cotton? cotton w/polyester content?

    Thank You!

    1. 105.1

      Truly any fabric would work well. I used leftover quilt fabric (plus some that I bought) but I’ve seen these rugs done with old cut up t-shirts.
      The strips are 1 inch by 5 inches.
      I didn’t anchor them in! Probably each week I have to poke 1-3 back in, but the non-skid backing I used seems to provide enough friction that the stips aren’t falling out everwhere. You could easily tie them, but I was worried it would make the rug not very soft to sit or stand on???

      1. Lin

        oh thanks!I thought I had to tie each one WHEW!

        1. Terri

          I was thinking that maybe you could use a latchhook to put the fabric pieces on. That would result in a smaller knot and keep them from falling out.

  6. 106
    Kim Bell

    Where do you get a rug mat ??? I love this!!

    1. 106.1

      You can get the carpet mat at Walmart in the same aisle as their area rugs for about $6-7.

      1. Meaghan

        I also got my mat at walmart, but in the fabric section. They have the no slip liners that you would put in your cabinets and it is $7 per yard. With 1 yard I will be able to make at least 3. The fabric isn’t technically meant for a rug, but it is essentially the same thing only cheaper!

  7. 107

    How big is the rug shown here?

  8. 108

    What exactly is the thing called that you tie the fabric to? Where do you get it!?

  9. 109
    Tina Larsen

    Hi, what about tying them in a knot after pulling them through? How do you think that would look?

  10. 110
    Marci White

    I’m wondering what color of blue you used on the walls?

  11. 111

    Made one of these … Old sheets … 3 king size!!! YES YES YES very labor intensive … Curious about your instructions to not tie the scraps …. I tied each and everyone one!!! … Does it really work not tying ??? Have you washed it ? I am thinking this one of mine is gonna take FOREVER TO DRY!!!
    I agree this was a worthwhile endeavor

    1. 111.1

      How big was your rug?

  12. 112

    I made this rug with tshirts i cut up into 1×5 strips. I did tie each one and fed them through with a rug hook. I used rug hooking mesh for my backing that i got at Michaels. The tieing does NOT make the rug too lumpy to walk or stand on. However, the rug is very heavy. Im afraid to wash it as it might throw my old washer into convulsions and I would have to chase it all over the basement! When I do wash it.. i will take it to the laundry mat. I have used it as a batroom mat for the last 6 months. Usually a good shaking out outside works best. I have not had to retie any strands so far! If i could attach a photo I would..but dont see where or how i can..
    They are fun to make, but a bit of work cutting all those t-shirts!! but well worth it!
    Will try fabric next time.. your rug looks so cute!

  13. 113

    I would like to know what your using as to tie them in and wat is that mat ur using…i would also like to no specifics on this rug…how big r the strips…when u go to wash this backing flexible so it can fit in the washer and was durably…not to mess the rug up…thanks..

  14. 114

    Hi I was wondering if it would matter if you use all types of fabric? And how much fabric do you need? I’m thinking of using old baby clothes and receiving blankets and a few old shirts. I don’t want to start and not have enough fabric or my colours not work. I love the idea and really want to try to make one.

    1. 114.1

      you could use a lighter and do all the ends so they dont fray! just be very careful!

  15. 115

    Hello. I was wondering if it matters my fabric has frayed after cutting. Yours looks so perfect

  16. 116

    Have you tried looping the fabric through the mat? As in, folding the fabric in half and pulling the ends through.

  17. 117

    Love the rug! I was wondering how many different patterns of fabric did you use, and how many strips per pattern? I think it is a great idea, I have been looking for one for my kids room with the no skid on the back and they can get expensive. I think you gave me the idea to make my own. I seen that the size was 1 in x 5 inches. Thank you for posting what you do, love your work.

  18. 118

    Hey! Thanks for the easy to follow instructions!! My only questions is if you did anytkhing to the fabric to keep it from fraying? Thanks!

    1. 118.1

      Hi, I really love your rag rug and have started one for a Christmas Present. If I ever get in done un time. I ripped my pieces of fabric and made them a little wider than one inch so I could kind of fold them a little to get rid of some of the raw edges also most of the fabrics did not have the design as clear on one side as the other (you know wrong side right side of fabric). What I’m wondering is if when this is washed it will become a big mat of strings. It is somewhat stringy now but still looks good. Any advice? Thank you for sharing your rug.

  19. 119

    So I’m getting ready to do this project for a baby shower and i would/need to know what kind of mat you are using and where I can get one!

  20. 120

    The lady says in the intro that she used an old non skid/slip rug mat. They’re a lot cheaper than the latch hook rugs you would normally need, I found a good sized one for under £5 on amazon. Sure you could find it on there in the US.

  21. 121
    Becky Child

    Hi Linda! Love this idea! I even thought about using a latch hook to pull the fabric through. Might cut down on some of the labor.

  22. 122

    I think the tutorial is very skimpy…and not enough directions..the visual your showing does not really tell specifics as to how the rug is made…You know how to do this tutorial you have put up but others do not know and not giving full directions does not help anyone…Please go back and give better tutorials…Future tutorials should be detailed..not skimpy…

    1. 122.1

      Hi Jan,
      Thanks for the feedback! This post is written by a guest blogger. I apologize the quality isn’t what you normally expect from Craftaholics Anonymous and that is because I did not write this post.

      1. April

        I thought that the directions and pictures were very helpful. Will definitely try this in the future.

        1. Samantha Ringer

          This tutorial was very helpful. Doesn’t take much explaining to get the point across. Seems labor intensive but very simple. The result is beautiful. Thanks for taking the time to share.

          1. Linda Arbuthnot

            I love this rug and I am going to try it. I think the directions were specific and how big the strips are and where to find the nonskid mat. Will be doing this soon. TY for the beautiful project.

  23. 123

    I sent you an email aking you to send me the instructions on how to make the rag rug. I really like your rug and your daughter looks very pretty sitting on it. I also said I would pay for the shipping. But I never got an answer from you either way. Thank you so much. If you didn’t want to send me a copy of the instructions you could have just email me. Good luck in your crafting.

    1. 123.1

      Hi Janette,
      I’m sorry, but I never got your email! The instructions on how to make this rug are in this tutorial post.

  24. 124

    Is this rug washable? I have tons of fabric of my Mamas and would love to make my girls a rug in rememberance of her. However I want it to withstand a washing. thanks! It is so cute!

    1. 124.1

      I would love to know this as well, also how durable is the non skid mat? You haven’t had any rips or anything? I think i would latch hook the strips myself, thanks for sharing!

  25. 125

    Hey there, So im trying this out and wow you were not lying about to takes time. How long did it take you to finish this? For some reason my my fabric is fraying already Im not sure why though. && By the way the rug is very cute!

  26. 126
    Stacey G.

    Is there any rhyme or Reason to when spaces are skipped in this rug? Or do you just sort of wing it based in how it’s looking as you go along?

  27. 127

    Im making one of these now and it is absolutely wonderful. So soft and plush! I did find a short cut that makes it go even faster. Im using a large plastic needle–one with the huge eye. The fabric strips thread easily and I just go under a row and right back out then slide the needle off. Also, I am doing every spot on one row then skipping 3 rows. Looks great!

  28. 128
    Patty K.

    I really love the idea of the rag rug but what about when you go to wash it if you only pull the strips through. Or is it that there are so many strips that they bunch together that they do not come out? And how long and wide are the strips ?

  29. 129
    TN Lizzie

    May I offer a couple of tips?
    1) The fabric pieces should not fray if you TEAR the sheet into 1 inch strips first. Start at the head of the sheet and remove the stitches from where it was folded over. If you must, feel free to iron the wrinkles out. (It is definately not going to make any difference later, but if it makes you feel better, go for it!)

    Use a yardstick to make light pencil marks every inch down one side, all the way to the bottom. Then go back to the top and make a tiny snip in the topmost mark with fabric scissors (not pinking shears.)

    – Take a deep breath – NOW, Rip. Where. You. Cut! See, it works! Keep going, and soon you’ll have a boat-load of 1″ strips. Cut them into 5″ pieces, and you’ll be good to go!

    2) A latch hook can be used to pull the fabric through the space in the rug mat. (I cannot imagine how much time this took threading each little piece through by hand – Oh, mercy!) Just push the latch hook through the mat where you want the fabric, slip some of the fabric strip around the hook, and pull it back through the mat. [See picture #3 from Emily and Jaime up above? The latch hook would go through from the right, under the white piece of mat, and come out on the left – and then pull the fabric back through so it looks like photo #4]

    I may be inspired to make one of these, or I may just gaze fondly at this adorable pink and blue one. Thanks for allowing your guests to share the idea! Happy crafting!

  30. 130

    This looks like it would go a lot faster with a large crochet hook to pull rags through. I love the idea and your’is beautiful.

  31. 131

    do you think this would work with denim, or would it be too thick to get through the holes?

  32. 132

    hello, I just love the rug you made in pink an blue but could you let me know if you knot the rags as you take them over and under and also could you let me know what you would call the backing?

  33. 133

    I made similar one out of black towels. I used a rag needle/hook and odor free liquid/ water proof nails for the backing. I love the idea of using old t-shirts in with your colors and can’t wait to try it. Always looking for a way to recycle.

  34. 134

    hey umm can i use like strips of bows

  35. 135


    Just wanted to let you know that I have made rugs like this one (it was a usual project for school a few years ago) and if you simply tie a knot in each piece of fabric it’ll last for years and it can be wash it at home with no danger of it falling apart! And it’ll still be fluffy!

    1. 135.1

      I thought about doing this but in smaller squares then “tying” the squares together so if you needed to wash a sect of it you could and air dry it. (cats n hairballs, ick I know but they always go for the rug!) at least then it would be easy to wash large rugs and just reassemble when dry.

  36. 136
    maria célia

    Parabéns quem divide idéias multiplica para si e par OS OUTROS Deus criou estas flores tão belas para enfeitarem o mundo ,Nossas vidas Quem enfeita o mundo do outro tem este Deus em si

  37. 137
    Maria de Fatiama

    Muito obrigada por compartilhar sua linda técnica conosco.

  38. 138

    This is AMAZING! I am totally going to make this!! Thanks so much!

  39. 139

    I really love this rug I am definitely going to make it! :) What kind of fabric did you use?

  40. 140

    I hate to tell you this AFTER you’ve finished your rug- which is positively GORGEOUS, but I suspect you worked way harder and longer than you had to… there is a hook made especially for pulling your material (I used to do these rugs using pieces of yarn) through the holes so you don’t have to do it yourself, which looks like it must have been really tedious to me. There is also a really simple way to pull the ends through a loop, which securely holds the fabric to the backing- no knotting or anything to do!! :) If you don’t know how, just pick up a yarn rug kit at the craft store- should come with a hook and directions for the loop trick.

  41. 142

    If you don’t tie them is it safe to machine wash? It looks fantastic! Dee

  42. 143

    I love the pic of the princess sitting on her poof of fabric. 8) I have a possible solution for saving time. I think this would work very well with a latch hook. The fabric strips are long enough and they will also compress enough to fit in the hook.

    I did just try it with a crochet hook (size G) and that worked well enough, the latch hook would make it smoother b/c it will keep the fabric from slipping out of the hook. I also tied it into a knot just like you’d do with a yarn latch hook rug and that might give it a slightly different, more compressed look (just something to watch for).

  43. 144

    This looks amazing! Think I might have to put this on my to do list…….it just keeps getting longer & longer lol!

  44. 145

    Is there any pattern in using the different colors?

  45. 146

    Love this rag :) and so easy to make…maybe something to do this winter :)
    Have a nice week :)

  46. 147

    Hi, I am already cutting my strips for this rug. Can you give me a bit more guidance when it comes to spacing? That’s the only thing unclear about your amazing tutorial!! Thank you!!

  47. 148

    Great blog! Very easy instructions. I want to give this a try but I see you have so many more posts I need to check out! Thank you for sharing your “craft” with us.

  48. 149

    I love your rug! How does it hold up when you wash it?

  49. 150

    Hello! I’m getting ready to tackle this myself, using old t-shirts! Would you recommend using pinking shears? Also what are the dimensions of the rug mat you used? I’m tryin to finish it for a Christmas present! Going to have to work fast!

    Thank You!