I decided a week ago that the sink in the guest bathroom needed a rug in front of it. There was a bath mat outside the tub/shower but nothing in front of the sink and I’m not sure why now, but I decided that just wasn’t good enough, so I got to thinking.
Early this summer we bought two large woven off-white rugs for a dollar a piece at a yard sale. They went in the kitchen originally, which meant they needed to be washed often, the frequent washing was too much for the one rug which promptly showed all its wear and the reason they were only a dollar piece.
The rug has been sitting on a chair in the guest bedroom for a few months now, awaiting new purpose. A new rug for the guest bathroom seemed most appropriate. Here’s how I did it, in case you happen to find a deal on something like this and want to re-use for something new.
Obviously, first measure the space where the rug will go and cut the old rug to size. Then you need to bind the edges to prevent unraveling. There is a great binding tutorial over at Posie Gets Cozy, but her tutorial assumes you have a bias tape maker. I’ll explain how to do it without one. Though if you plan to do a lot of sewing, those bias tape makers are a God send and relatively inexpensive.
To bind the edges of this rug, I cut 4 – four inch wide strips. The strips are 1 inch longer than the rug. The rug was 29″ by 15″, meaning I cut 2 – 16″ strips and 2 – 30″ strips. Traditionally bias tape and binding tape is cut on the bias, this uses more fabric and generally I find to be a hassle, so I just cut it straight, do what you prefer.
Now, lay the edge of your strip right side down on the right side (the side that will be facing up) of your rug. Fold a half inch on each end of your strip, over, and pin into place.
Stitch using a 5/8″ seam allowance, locking stitches on both ends. Now put the rug onto a table with the bottom side up and the strip of fabric pulled out.
Now fold the raw edge of your strip underneath the edge of the rug, so that the fabric is doubled over. Do this the entire length of your edge.
Take the folded edge and pull it over and on top of the back of your rug. Pull tightly into place and pin.
Traditionally, when quilting, you’d hand stitch this back edge. This is a very nice touch and if you want to feel free. I find that machine stitching is a little stronger and considering people will be walking on this I want it tough. Machine or hand stitch along the edge of your fabric.
Repeat the above steps on the next three sides, overlapping your edges. If you’re really good at mitering, feel free to miter corners, I’m going for the most basic of approaches here for those new to sewing and binding. Once you have all your sides down. Seal your edges by sewing them down.
Simply tuck in the raw edges and stitch to seal the corners. Cut your threads and you’re done with your new rug.
Don’t limit yourself to rugs. Consider re-purposing those old, torn rugs into place mats or table runners, using the same method, just cutting to size.