Tag Archives: braided rug


Apparently, I’ve got a history of pulling out long-suffering undone projects this time of year.

This braided rug was one of my early publicly declared UFOs – I thought I’d started it earlier than I said then, but I remember the hours I spent cutting and braiding and sneezing in my old work room, and where it sat in various-sized balls and braids gathering dust in an old, but not interesting old, plastic milk crate.

Then I vaguely remember evaluating it a few years ago, deciding I wanted a black center and it had to have green, but I have no memory of cutting and braiding even more – likely more than I’d done the first time around. I guess I finally felt like I had enough snake braid then, and started to sew it (slowly and painfully I recall).

And I got it out once more when I finally scored a zigzag sewing machine, but the distance between the zig and the zag is too narrow, so my thoughts of finally finishing it on a machine went poof. (Though if I’d found another machine with a wider swath of zigging and zagging I’d be back in business.)

Now, we no longer have a need for another rug, though there are a few spaces where one would fit better than a large plastic shopping bag with a heavy round object that is far bigger than a sport ball, but smaller than one of those sitting balls, and the removal of said unwieldy bag of pre-rug would free up space for folded batting or a wine-case sized box.

So once more, I hauled it out, determined to finish it for good.

But I have no desire to continue to sew it together, and I don’t really like it.

But I’d wanted some more tarn to make containers or something, and the new bath could use a rug, or at least a new absorbent black bathmat… so I started to unbraid it…

And now it’s back in its shopping bag – unbraiding apparently takes me about 73% as much time as braiding it, and it’s still sneezy.

I’m thinking that it’s possible I just might have a lifetime supply of tomato ties instead…


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Long term UFOs – part I

I was inspired by Completely Cauchy’s post about her long-term relationship with George, a beautiful (now finished) quilt.  Hers was a relationship of nearly three years that reminded me that I have some so old that they’re common law now, or maybe they could even claim abandonment and neglect.  But in my head, I see them finished and functioning in my life and I forget why they stalled.  I know that I’m only to blame for my very whimsical approach to making things (whim in a bad unfocused sort of way, not one of quirkiness and smiles) and that is why I take months rather than days to finish some things, but other things came up too, right?  I needed more materials, or thought I did, or if it was intended for a gift, the event passed by and then way by, or I thought it was something I could sell until I realized it took too long and I was my own sweatshop bastard boss, or, or, or…?   So I am going to attempt to find out why a few select projects have languished (one for more than a decade!) and resolve* to finish them or send them to the scrap pile.

The t-shirt rag rug.  I started this shortly after I moved into the house I moaned about in the first post, so that would make it around 6 years old, not too bad.  I bought a giant crochet hook to make it and I told myself this was the excuse I needed to finally commit to learning how to crochet.  I vaguely remember watching a few videos and starting it, but then I stopped…I think it was because I had cut up the shirts without any regard to keeping a uniform strip size, or else I just encountered my weird mental crochet block.  So I started braiding the scraps.  This was not an unfamiliar act for me – when I was around 10 or 12, I made a braided rag rug out of my mom’s old fabric and clothes scraps (including a 1960s era cotton paisley, and some suit wool) to rest on a brick dais of sorts where the wood stove was in our old house.  I sat on that thing next to the stove nearly every day in the wintertime, then it became a favorite place of the dog’s as well.  Needless to say, it was well-worn and probably thrown away when they sold the place.   I had the intention of using my newly created t-shirt rug in my studio, but I ended up liking the bare floor since it was an easier surface on which to cut and smooth out materials.  The shirts were all mine and mostly from the 1990s and early 00s and had become cropped from the dryer or had some other fault I couldn’t tolerate.  And I have a vague memory of becoming annoyed with the balls getting twisted up while I was braiding them…but I quit the project about three years ago, though I think I may have gotten it out once in the meantime.  Yesterday, I emptied out the box of rug snake:

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It is much bigger pile than it appears, so I had the giddy sensation that maybe it was closer to being finished than I had remembered, so I tested it out.

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Nope, it is still too small – larger than a doormat or bathroom rug, but too small for under the desk or kitchen table, or as I had originally wanted, a decent middle of the room-sized beast.  But I’m also conflicted about not really loving the look of rag rugs – I abhor country decor for the most part, so now I think I’m remembering why I really stopped….

But I will finish it since I still have some balls of t-shirt and it requires no mental capacity.


*This is not a New Year’s resolution – the timing is pure coincidence.

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