Thursday, October 15, 2009

How to Crochet a Rag Rug

I've had this rocking chair for months. I bought it for five bucks at a yard sale. I love it. Erik says I bought it because I'm "a very old woman". Hater.

It's well-loved, but it needs a pad. You'd think that, uh, nature's padding would be enough. *ahem* But no. So I took the balls of fabric that I have rolling around that I use to crochet rag rugs. These are upcycled sheets. I wrote about how to prepare them here.




I came home from work tonight and decided a quick round rag rug would be just the ticket. The right size would make a perfect pad for the rocker! I took a red flannel sheet material, and I chained four using my S-Hook and then slip stitched to make a ring.





When you're creating a round shape that starts with a ring, you want to make your first single crochets into the center of the ring, instead of into the individual stitches that make the ring shape. Here, I just put my hook right through the center, where the single crochets will go, so you can see what I'm talking about.




Why, yes, I did come home tonight and get into my pajamas at 6:30. This is the start of my round rug. Six single crochets went into the center of the ring, then I slip stitched the last sc to the first on. Chain one, don't turn, and make the second round by putting 2 sc into each of the 6 sc (12 sc total). Slip stitch at the end to finish the round, chain one, and don't turn.



Round Three: * 2sc in first stitch, 1 sc in next stitch* repeat * to * 6 times. (18 sc total) Slip stitch into the chain one at the beginning of the round, do not turn, chain one.
Round Four: *2sc in first stitch, 1sc in each of next two stitches* repeat * to * 6 times (24 sc total) Slip stitch into the chain one at the beginning of the round, do not turn, chain one.

Here I decided to switch colors. I'm going to do it during the slip stitch. I put the hook through the chain one that starts my row. Normally, I would grab the red wrapped around my left index finger and pull it through.


But because I want to switch colors, I make a slip knot with the new material, and pass it onto the hook. I pull that through the chain one.






Now I need to pull the new material straight through the red loop that remains on my hook (that red loop ended the last sc in the row).






Why, yes, we did have cheerios for dinner. Isn't Scotty helpful? Now my new material is ready and positioned to start my new row. First I have to chain one.






Round Five: *2 sc in first stitch, 1sc in each of next 3 stitches* repeat * to * 6 times. (30 sc total) Slip stitch into the chain one at the beginning of the round, do not turn, chain one.

Oh, after I change colors, I usually tie the tail of the new color to the tail of the old color. I just cut off the old color from the ball of material, then literally tie a knot.



Nothing could be easier! No sewing, no measuring, just tie and go.








Round 6: *2 sc in the first stitch, 1sc in each of next 4 stitches* repeat * to * 6 times (36 sc total). Slip stitch into the chain one at the beginning of the round, do not turn, chain one.

For some reason (probably because I was interrupted roughly 3 dozen times in the past 10 minutes) I feel like when I got to what should have been the end of this row (at 36 sc total), I still had this empty stitch from the row below. If I just ignored and slip stitched to the chain one at the start of the row, it would start to pucker. That chain was just too far away! So, I tore the whole thing out and...ha! haha!....I kid! What I did was I said, huh, and then I went ahead and put that extra sc right on in there. And I had an extra single crochet as I went around in subsequent rows. And the earth kept spinning, so clearly that funny little miscount was not the end of the world.

Let's give it a tester. I got my mad measuring skillz from my mom. Looks like I need more rounds.







At the end of each of the next three rounds slip stitch into the chain one at the beginning of the round, do not turn, chain one.

Round 7: *2sc in first stitch, 1sc in each of next 5 stitches* repeat * to * 6 times (42 sc total)
Round 8: *2sc in first stitch, 1sc in each of next 6 stitches* repeat * to * 6 t imes (48 sc total)
Round 9: *2sc in first stitch, 1sc in each of next 7 stitches* repeat * to * 6 times (54 sc total)

Sometime in this blue and white round, I lost track again and was off by a stitch or two somewhere, and again, I just sc into them and moved on. It made my total stitch count for the row and subsequent rows off a bit, but it was laying nice and flat and there is no prize for perfection. A crocheted rag rug is a very forgiving little project.

Round 10: *2sc in first stitch, 1sc in each of next 8 stitches (60 sc total) Slip stitch into the chain one at the beginning of the round, do not turn, chain one.

Another tester. This might be just about right. Nah.

Round 11: *2 sc in first stitch, 1 sc in each of next 9 stitches (66 sc total) Slip stitch into the chain one at the beginning of the round, do not turn, chain one.

And now I know it's done. How can I be so sure? Well, that tail I'm holding in my hand? It's the end of the fabric roll. Just enough to slip stitch and tie it off!






Yep, definitely done.








When you flip it over, you can see all the knots from where I just tied on a new color. I trimmed them down a little, but left them.

I wanted this to be pad sized, but I could have kept growing the rounds, using the same pattern above. (Divide the total number of sc in the previous row by 6; whatever that number is becomes your "repeat". The repeat is made with 2sc in the first stitch, and sc in the remaining stitches. For example, for round 12, I would take the 66 stitches in round 11 and divide by 6 to get 11. For every 11 stitches, I would put 2sc into the first one and 1sc into each of the next 10. Those 11 stitches would make 12 sc in the new round. I'd repeat that for 6 times and end up with 72 sc. All total sc counts at the end of the rounds are multiples of 6. There are other number patterns in there, feel free to use the one that's comfy for you.

And now I'm going to go relax, in my comfy rocking chair!

5 comments:

  1. I love it!!!! It just seems to be perfect for a vintage rocker.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks, Betty! I love it too, it just made me smile when I walked in the door today after work. It's comfy and the colors are so sweet. I'm thinking of making a little pad for each of the kitchen chairs, too, but I'll have to make another sheet run at the thrift store! These particular balls of fabric have taken me about as far they can go. :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Anonymous ~ I keep cracking up at this comment! Do I replace the "h" with a "w"? Or do I replace the "ee" with an "i"? Either way, it cracks me up!

    Brit ~ Dude. You've always known how to make a rag rug...it's called an email, with your color preferences and size requirements!

    ReplyDelete