Introduction: Braided T-shirt Rug
Runner Up in the
T-Shirt Transformations Challenge
In this instructable, I'll teach you how to make a really cool rug, like the one pictured, from your old t-shirts! For me, this rug didn't cost any money because I used stuff I already had at my disposal. This project is a great way to put all of those old colorful t-shirts to use if you don't want to donate them.
Here's what you'll need:-
- 3-5 old t-shirts, depending on how big you want this rug
- A pair of scissors
- Needle and thread
- Safety pins
Its a great rug for your pets or a decorative piece for your living room or patio. Keep reading to find out how I did it!
Step 1: Cut T-shirts
- Flatten the t-shirt out in front of you, but face it sideways so that one sleeve points toward you and the other points away from you
- Next, measure out every 2 inches from the bottom seam of the shirt (which is on the left or right side now), all the way to under the sleeves of the shirt
- You will want to start cutting on each mark or line you made, but leave 3-4 inches of the shirt still intact on the far side. Do this up to the sleeves, where you should cut all the way to the other seam.
- After you cut all of these lines, you can pick up the shirt and arrange it so it looks like a ribcage in front of you. See that bit of fabric that you didn't cut? Now you're going to cut it diagonally so that you will end up creating one long piece of fabric from your t-shirt.
- Now, you should end up with a really long strip of fabric from your t-shirt. Stretch this out really, really well and wind it up into a ball (as shown in the image) so it is more manageable. Repeat for your other shirts.
Tips: Discard the portion of the t-shirt above the sleeves. Also, do not use the t-shirts which has stiches on the sides to have a smooth and uniform tshirt yarn.
Step 2: Tie Knot and Start Braiding
- After you have prepared all of your t-shirts and made them into yarn, it's time to start your braid.
- Gather three strips of different colors and stack them. Tie a knot tightly into the top to begin.
- Once you have the knot, that's the starting point. Start braiding those 3 strips. Cut the stips which you have started braiding into a workable length so that its easy to work with. You don't want to braid the strips which are rolling into yarn. Also, cut these 3 stips into different lengths so that when you will attach additional strips, connections on the knots will be at different places, which looks good.
- Once you’ve braided about 4″ of the strips, coil the braid into a circle as shown above, with the knot in the center.
- Take the strand closest to the center and pass it under and through one of the loops in the braid you coiled. This is how you will attach the braid to the coil.
Step 3: Add Strands and Continue Braiding
Continue braiding as described in the previous step. Every few inches, pass the strand closest to the center under and through the existing braid to attach it. You’ll do this continuously to create the entire rug! Braid and attach, braid and attach.
If any of your strands are getting shorter, add additional strands by either making a knot or stitching it to the new strand, whatever you feel comfortable and easy to do for you.
Make sure when you attach a new strand, add colors after every few strands. This will make your rug colorful as shown in the image. You will automatically see a patter coming up as you have braided and attached few rounds.
Step 4: Finishing the Rug
When you feel you have got your rug complete, finish the last strands by attaching it to the outermost round by braiding until the end and stitching the end with the outermost round, under it, such that the stitches are under the rug and not shown on top.
Step 5: Final Touch and Relax!
The rug will tend to bunch up as you go along and especially towards the end. To flatten it, spritz it with a spray water bottle and use your hands to push it back into shape. You can place some heavy objects on it to hold it down while you braid if you need to.
If you got through all of those steps, throw that rug down and relish in your own awesomeness!
(Optional) I stitched a button in the center, just for fun.
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