My Talented Mother’s Latest Handmade Rag Rug

The Story Behind this Handmade Rag Rug:

My mum, Victoria, has been on a rag rug marathon recently and has been knocking out one gorgeous handmade rag rug after another – this rug and this rug, for example. Her latest creation, however, began in a slightly unconventional way. Months ago, we were given a piece of hessian that someone had already started to rag rug into. Whoever had begun the rug had shaggy rag rugged about six rows, but things had started to go wrong and they’d decided to cut their losses.

Our mystery crafter had rag rugged too close together with a thick fabric into a very very tight weave of hessian. All these factors meant that the hessian had started to curl badly.

Badly spaced rag rugging done into hessian causing the hessian to curl up

Here you can see that the hessian was physically curling up from the strain.

This sorry piece of hessian had been lying around for a while before my mum got her hands on it. She decided that it would be a shame to let it go to waste and made it her mission to give it a new lease of life. Victoria pulled all the fabric pieces out of the hessian and started afresh.

The Rag Rug Design:

Victoria was determined to use the pre-cut pieces of fabric that were originally in the hessian, so these proved the starting point of the rug. Some of the pieces were a thick woollen fabric (similar to our blanket yarn), which was a lovely quality.

My mum often takes inspiration from items around her and this time it was a vase that provided the idea behind the rug. This vase to be precise…

Vintage vase for rug inspiration

This vase was the inspiration for the rug.

The vase gave her the idea for unequal bands of colour with a large neutral section near the centre. After that, it was mostly improv as per Victoria’s usual rugs.

Victoria’s Handmade Rag Rug:

So, that’s the story behind the rag rug, but I bet you’re mostly keen to just see what it looks like, so here it is… Ta da!

Cosy shaggy rag rug in front of sofa in living room made out of woollen material

Ta da! My mum’s handmade rag rug.

Striped handmade rag rug up close

I think the coloured stripes in the rug really help to lift the design – it almost feels Bauhaus.

Rag rug made by hand in front of sofa in grey, red, yellow and green colours.

The largest green section of the rag rug incorporated the fabric that had already been cut and put into the hessian.

Ragged Life Rag rug on floor made using textile waste and clothing offcuts

The rug wasn’t a literal translation of the vase, but you can see the influence.

As we were photographing the rag rug, the sharks were circling. Well, Hughey the cat was circling, who isn’t quite so menacing. I’m a massive animal-lover, so please forgive the gratuitous cat photos now 🙂

Grey shaggy rag rug made using 100% wool blanket yarn

Hughey the cat knew he was onto something when he first came over…

Cat on handmade rag rug in cream, green, yellow and green

Hughey the cat making a guest appearance.

Proggy rag rug with black and white cat sitting on it

Feeling chuffed

Striped handmade rag rug with cat sitting on it

Hughey isn’t sure what to make of the rug at first.

Black cat on shaggy stripey handmade rag rug

Hughey looks pretty comfy…

There’s something that attracts animals to rag rugs – I think it may be something to do with the texture and smell of the hessian that they like. Has anyone else noticed that?

Well, that was the my mum’s latest handmade rag rug in all it’s beautiful and shaggy glory. I hope you liked seeing how it turned out (particularly given its inauspicious start).


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As always, thanks for reading.

Elspeth x


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2 years ago

This looks so comfy!


[…] And below is a rug that my mum, Victoria, made using a mixture of blanket yarn and other materials. You can see more photos on the rug specific blog post here. […]

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