We had a roommate that left about 15 Coffee Burlap Bags when he moved out. They have been sitting in the basement forever & the floor in the kitchen needed to be redone; ergo, Burlap Bag Floor! I did this project because I was curious about how this would turn out, its a cool floor to have in our kitchen & it only cost me the sealer. To get burlap bags, I would check with any stores or places that you think may get supplies in burlap. Ask around, ask friends, ask craigslist - it will come. Coffee roasters that get their coffee from south america use these types of bags. They are pretty, large & they usually throw them away - so I would try going that route.
Step 1: Supplies
I used a hammer and some nails I had laying around, a staple gun to get areas in between the nails, burlap bags & a box cutter with a new shiny blade (you need it to be sharp). I used a regular paint roller and a paint pan. I covered the pan in shopping bags so I could re-use it after I was done with this project. I also did a lot of poly coats on this floor & I would wrap the paint roller between coats to keep it from drying out.
I used 1 gallon of WATER BASED 'Sanding Sealer' as the first few coats to fill in burlap bags & 1.5 gallons of WATER BASED polyurethane to do another 8-10 coats.
Step 2: Prep the Bags
I used the box cutter to separate the bags. BE CAREFUL. This is probably the trickiest part. I would step on one half of the bag and pull with my left hand on the other. This would expose the seam; using the box cutter i would touch it to the thread & due to the tension it would just come apart.
Step 3: Create a Layout
Layout the bags in a manner that covers the whole floor & looks perty. I had them overlap and go slightly over the edges because these will shrink after you apply the poly. You also want to make sure your bags are as taut as you can make them on the floor. I would nail one corner, then stretch out another couple feet of the bag and put in another nail. I also used the stapler every 6-12 inches... or as needed.
Step 4: Cover Your Edges & Poly
I put down one layer of the sanding sealer, then after it dried I went around and heavily painted in all the edges. After everything is dry you can go around and cut off all those little extra bits sticking out.
Then came the tedious task of putting down many, many coats of the sanding sealer & applying the regular poly. It takes 2-4 hours to dry between sessions; however the application it self is really easy, taking just 5-10 minutes to complete. So I would apply a coat before leaving for the day or going to sleep.
I don't know how many coats I actually ended up doing all together, but just keep adding coats until the floor is solid. This way if you have any spills you can just clean them up with a rag and you can easily vacuum for regular maintenance.
Step 5: Finishing
Yay you're almost done! I went around and cut out any bits that were sticking out or that would hurt when walking barefoot. I also sanded down some of the places to make it feel a bit softer to the foot.
...and - YOU'RE DONE!