Introduction: Wooden Rug

Picture of Wooden Rug

Ever think, "Hmm, I wonder if a rug could be made from wood?" Well, I have, and subsequently, made one. Using rectangular shaped blocks of premium walnut wood, rope, and aluminum piping, I designed and happily stood on a wooden rug. How many people can say that?

Follow this tutorial for the how-to!

Step 1: Measuring and Cutting

Picture of Measuring and Cutting

I had two 8 foot walnut wood planks, that were about 5 inches wide. I decided I wanted simple rectangular blocks for the rug, so I went with a 5 x 2.5 inch rectangle.

The best tool for doing about 40 of these rectangle blocks is probably a chop saw. As you can tell from the pictures, I started off using a band saw, but it was taking way too long, and the cuts, obviously, weren't wonderfully straight. Chop saw all the way.

I cut about 40 of these bad boys, then sanded them to a smooth finish.

Step 2: Drilling

Picture of Drilling

After fiddling around with different configurations, I decided to go with a staggered, brick-like pattern for interest and movement.

I would be using a strong 1/2 inch cotton rope to hold the blocks together, but since I wanted the top of the rug to be smooth, I would need to drill into the sides of the blocks, thread the rope through these holes, for a flawless rug surface.

Since my blocks were 5 inches wide, I would drill two holes into the sides of the blocks, both at the 1 inch mark of each side. This way the staggered configuration could hold strong.

I used a drill press to make the holes, and a drill bit that was slightly larger in diameter than my rope. I made a quick jig on the drill press that would allow me to just insert a block and press down, creating a precise hole. Otherwise, I would spent hours perfectly measuring and marking where the holes should go. This saved me a bunch of time as I would be making 2 holes for 40 blocks. yikes!

Step 3: Oiling

Picture of Oiling

After all the holes had been made, I decided to get my money's worth by bringing the beautiful grain out of the walnut wood. I used Boos Lock mystery oil to achieve this. This stuff is phenomenal! I sprayed the oil over the surface of the walnut blocks, smeared it around, then wiped off excess. I did about 3 coats of this, remembering to not neglect the edges! This step was really rewarding! Look at the amazing color!

Step 4: Cutting Aluminum Piping

Picture of Cutting Aluminum Piping

So even though the rope would be holding the blocks together, I would still need something that would allow for spacing between the blocks. Initially, I thought I would tie knots in the rope between threading, but this proved unwieldy and cumbersome, so I decided to go with small bits of aluminum piping. I made sure the gauge was correct for my rope diameter to thread through. It was, and so I cut loads of aluminum piping down to 3/4 inch. Once this step was complete, I would finally be able to start threading my rug!

Step 5: Threading

Picture of Threading

Taking all of my materials, wood blocks, rope, and aluminum piping, I could start threading!

First, I wrapped duct tape around the end of my rope I would be using the thread. This would ensure it wouldn't unravel, and would make threading quick and painless. I even made a narrower edge so it resembled a needle.

Rotating between a block and piping, I threaded a column of 4 blocks initially, but since I wanted a staggering pattern, I gave the second column 5 blocks, and went on alternating this way until I finished off my blocks. In the end I only used 36 of my blocks and 56 bits of piping.

I wanted a hand-made feel, so at the two ends, I just knotted and cut the rope.

And here we have it! A beautiful, one of a kind, wooden rug. I think it would look even better if made on a larger scale, but for my needs, my final dimensions of ~36 inches squared was perfect.

Hope you enjoyed this tutorial!

Comments

MichiganDave (author)2016-04-06

I am impressed and I think the look of the wood is lovely so a BIG thanks for sharing.

bignail1954 (author)2016-04-04

I like the idea yet where would you use it? I love walnut. A wall hanging perhaps?!

Myrian1 (author)2016-04-03

How is clean up? I can only imagine all the dirt and debris from daily life getting in hard to reach places in that

jreidy1 (author)2016-04-03

I'm gunna do it! Check out Steve Ramsey's "Make a Wood Doormat" on YouTube (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=krnUSvsrcnI).

CarlG28 (author)2016-04-03

How did you finish the corners?

ScubaSteve51 (author)2014-01-26

Nice craftsmanship! Not a bad idea, but as others have said...it looks like a trip hazard. If you could bring the slats to within 1/8" of each other it would be more practical...perhaps you could use brass washers as spacers for a nice accent. This "rug" probably weighs a ton, but it would look nice on a wall.

itsmescotty (author)ScubaSteve512016-04-03

And I don't like that painting of . . . , I know - lets pot it on the floor as a rug ?

Tex Arcana (author)ScubaSteve512014-03-09

Not only this, but round off the edges and corners, so they're easier on the feet.

dotyuki (author)2016-04-03

Years ago, I made one out of teak strips. I remember my Grandfather making them out of oak for the Japanese Furo (bath) so you can wash outside of the soaking tube before entering. I used it inside my shower and outside so my wet feet wouldn't touch the tile. It worked great. Cleaning was easy and it didn't weigh much. I used stainless steel screws, countersunk on back support strips.

oldaugie (author)2014-03-19

Does it trap dirt?

greymax1 (author)2014-01-27

I heard of cutting a rug but this is a great idea! Kudos!

amalkhan (author)greymax12014-03-03

Hah! I love a good pun!

Sam DeRose (author)2014-02-20

Oh wow! This is a fantastic idea.

Preval (author)2014-02-18

This looks amazing. Great finish!

JenPat (author)2014-01-28

This is gorgeous!

gecko_girl3 (author)2014-01-28

Beautiful piece and great 'ible! Your instructions and photos leave no room for misunderstanding and the finished product is devine!

As someone else suggested I think I'll try my hand with a smaller scale rug and make placemats. Hemp rope and wooden beads/spacers would flow with the over all design as well as add to the natural feel of things.

Thanks for sharing your work!!

cmannaberg (author)2014-01-27

I made a rug like this using cedar. I have one inside my sauna and it is perfect. The other is outside on the balcony. I used flexible polyethylene tubing instead of rope. A larger diameter tubing was used for spacers, instead of aluminum tubing.

At the end of the rope, instead of a knot, I used a stainless steel screw that fits tightly into the end of the tubing

Unfortunately, the tubing has not held up well outside where it is exposed to UV. I need to find a better material.

vincent7520 (author)2014-01-27

very nice

i'll keep it mind

snoopindaweb (author)2014-01-26

I'd leave as is to allow for stomping mud off boots, etc.

NitroRustlerDriver (author)2014-01-26

Very cool looking. I'd worry about dirt/rocks getting between the rug and the wood floor and scratching things. Maybe putting rubber or felt on the bottom of the block might help prevent this?

Cheese Queen (author)2014-01-26

Unfortunately, wearing heels or going barefoot would be problematic on this "rug". But its pretty- I'd like it as a patio wind screen.

Bettybstt (author)2014-01-26

Beautiful - I just wouldn't want anybody standing on it!

boxcarmj (author)2014-01-26

Very nice, thank-you!

Mike.

David Catriel (author)2014-01-26

very cool and authentic idea. would make excellent place mats, too!

moover (author)2014-01-26

Awesome

BigRed1973 (author)2014-01-24

Just beautiful!!

critopadolf (author)2014-01-24

Do you think that 2.5" x 1.25" blocks would be too small?

jbrown120 (author)2014-01-24

I'd imagine I'd stub my toes a lot

Roryfkl (author)2014-01-24

Beautifully done! Very creative!

vfrpic (author)2014-01-24

I love it. I would recommend using nylon or synthetic rope or parachord if this is going to be used outside our in a damp environment. Great job!

mustafaa (author)2014-01-24

very good. You just need frame

lverzino (author)2014-01-24

Is it hard to clean ? Cuz I'm loving this

radznjason2011 (author)2014-01-24

I'm guessing the women in your life prefer flats.

Icesphere (author)2014-01-24

That's so cool and the best part is that it's solid but flexible and could be used for other things like a moving wall or hammock and could also probably be made of different materials like plastic

YerGramma (author)2014-01-24

Great idea and a beautiful end result! Thanks for posting it.

sebastian22 (author)2014-01-23

Very cool idea. Im extremely jealous of your workshop.

Gregbot (author)2014-01-23

awesome! Thanks!!!

AngryRedhead (author)2014-01-23

Soooooo pretty!

Cameronmo (author)2014-01-23

This would look cool on a wall, as a background for some frames or something.

Carleyy (author)2014-01-23

Very cool! How stable is the rug? I imagine the wood blocks move around a lot.

Stone_UFO (author)2014-01-23

cool idea

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