Category Archives: Rug Weaving

Information, supplies and how-to for rug weavers.

Raanu

A Raanu rug was traditionally a flat weave weft faced handwoven wall hanging that was sometimes also used as a bed covering. The warp is made of cotton rug yarn or sometimes linen yarn, and the weft is woven of multicoloured fine wool yarns, often a single ply. The weave structure is a repp weave and the weft is beaten down firmly so that the warp yarns are fully covered.

The earliest Raanu date back to the 1600’s. The Saami wove Raanu (Rátnu, Rádno, Grene) and used them as wall coverings in their tents and sod huts. The designs of the Raanu depicted the colours of the landscape scenes around them and brought some colour into their homes during the dark and long winter nights. Raanu were also woven in many parts of Finland. In the 1960-70’s Raanu again became popular and were displayed on the walls of many Finnish and Scandinavian homes.

I thought that I would weave a Raanu based on one of my favourite places in the UK, West Wittering Beach. The photo is by Robert Lane.

West Wittering Beach
West Wittering Beach

I am weaving this Raanu with yarns that I have dyed with natural dyes. The dyes I have used are:
Indigo, Logwood, Madder Root, Brazilwood, Alkanet Root, Indian Barberry, Flame of the Forest

Raanu Rug Weaving
Raanu Rug Weaving

Warp Yarn: Cotton Rug Warp 12/9 1900 m/kg
Weft Yarn: Sport Weight Wool 2600 m/kg
Sett: No. 30 Reed (approx 6 epi)
Width in Reed: 60 cm
PPI: 30 ppi
Weave Structure: Repp Weave

The weft yarns must be beaten firmly. Throw the shuttle. Beat. Change shed. Beat again before throwing the next weft.

West Wittering Beach Raanu
West Wittering Beach Raanu

Raanu Mallit
Raanu – Historical Weave Structures
Raanu or Ryijy
Raanu Minimalist Design
Peilikäs raanu as a mirror

Finnish Heritage Museum
Raanu Weaving

Weaving Books
The Weaver’s Companion (The Companion Series)
The Weaver’s Companion (The Companion Series)
Learning to Weave
The Big Book of Weaving: Handweaving in the Swedish Tradition: Techniques, Patterns, Designs and Materials

Weaving on Ebay

Vintage Weave-It Loom

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Harrisville Potholder PRO Loops Large Cotton Weaving Kit Refills Solid Color New

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12x16 inch Extra Large, Adjustable, Heavy Duty Weaving Loom Kit.

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Rya Rug Repair

Someone recently sent me pictures of a beautiful wool rya rug they had woven. Unfortunately due to wear and tear, the rya has a few holes in it, so they asked me to how repair the rya.

Nordiska Rya Rug Repair
Rya Rug Repair
Rya Repair

In my opinion, rya rugs should not be used on the floor, rather they should be considered to be works of art and hung as a tapestry on the wall. The weave structure is not strong enough in a rya to withstand floor use and often results in holes in the rug caused by abrasion of table legs or chairs. If you are unfortunate enough to have a rya that has developed a hole, here is how to repair it.

How To Repair a Hole in the Center of a Rya Rug
For the hole in the centre of the rug –
use a strong linen yarn. You may not be able to find an exact match but something similar will work just as well.
Rya rug hole
Do not trim any of the broken warp threads until you have finished weaving the repair into place – as you will need these for a guide of where to place the repair warp.
Start by sewing the linen warp yarn into the back of the canvas a couple of inches away from the hole
Weave/sew the linen yarn across the width of the rug – weftwise for about an inch or two
then following the first row of warp yarn that is damaged
weave the linen yarn along the warp thread down, weaving in and out between the weft threads, following beside the exisiting warp thread.
This will be like the top of a Z shape. Weaving across the weft first, before weaving down, helps to secure the warp yarn in place so that it doesn’t pull out.
This warp yarn should not show on the surface – except in the section where the hole is.
Then Continue to weave past the hole for another 2 – 3 inches.
Then weave in the second warp row, moving back up and again following the next existing warp yarn.
Continue weaving up and down, following each warp yarn until the hole has been repaired.
Alternate the placement of where you change direction, to avoid creating a bump in the rug.

Once you have rewoven all the warp yarn,
again weave the warp yarn in a horizontal – weftwise direction for a few inches, to lock the yarn into place.
This should be almost invisible from the surface of the rug as the rya shag will cover up the repair.

Repair A Rya Rug Diagram

Now very carefully trim back any bits of broken warp yarn ends that are sticking out. Leave the original warp yarn that has not been damaged in place.

The wool weft backing can now be woven into place.
From the photo, it looks like there are about 8-10 rows of wool weft woven in each section.
Again, if you don’t have any of the original yarn, a good quality wool yarn of a similar weight will work as well.
Following along the existing weft yarn, weave the wool into place, over and under the new warp threads.
Again alternate the beginning and end of the weft yarns so that there isn’t an obvious bump in the repair.

Once the repair has been made, you can add the rya knots into the repaired section. If you don’t have any extra rya yarn left, you can undo a few of the rya knots that use similar colours and remove one of the rya threads from each knot and use these to fix the broken area.
A rya generally uses a lot of yarn so a few knots that are missing a thread or two will go unnoticed.
Hole in Binding of Rya Rug

Rya rug repair

To fix this, it’s a bit like darning a sock.
Using matching wool yarn weave both warp and weft to cover the existing hole.

Rya Rugs
Paivatar Yarns Rya Rugs Bespoke Rya Rugs made to order.
3 to 120 Rya
Hemp Rya Tapestry
History of the Rya Rug

Rya Rugs – You Tube

Rya Tapestry Books

Hand-made C.U.M. Rya Rugs

Techniques of Rya Knotting

Hooked rugs & ryas;: Designing patterns and applying techniques

Doubleweave Rug

Hi there

This time I will try to send some pic´s of my latest project- a rag rug
for the first time in many years. It goes on 12 shafts & treadles. I
have been working with the design for quite a while – and 2 days ago
I finally got it exactly as I would like it to be.

weavingly yours

Marianne

In this rainy windblowing greyish country in the north of Europe –
Denmark.”

Doubleweave Rug
Doubleweave Rug
Doubleweave Rag Rug
Doubleweave Rag Rug

Rag Rugs

Wagon Wheel Rugs
T-Shirt Rugs
Rag Weaving
Roving Rug
Catalogne Rugs

Rug Weaving Books

Weaving Rag Rugs

The Rag Rug Handbook

Weaving Contemporary Rag Rugs: New Designs, Traditional Techniques

Weaving Western Sakiori: A Modern Guide for Rag Weaving

Favorite Rag Rugs

Weaving T-shirt Rugs

I had a pile of my children’s t-shirts from high school, all x-l. There must have been one from every activity. They represented a good chunk of money. I thought I could transform them into rugs.

I used my rotary cutter to make 2.5″ wide continuous strips and rolled them onto cardboard tubes. I got 18-24 ft per shirt.

I had done some reading about weaving and knew the basics. The wonderful people in the chat room encouraged me to grab my daughter’s 20″ rigid heddle loom, any kind of warp thread and go for it. That is just what I did.

I warped 5 per inch with crochet thread that was laying around. Grabbed a balll of shirt and wove. I used the whole ball just to see how far one shirt would go.

Rug#1 finished 15″ x 32″. Not great but looks good infront of my washer.

Rug#2 finished 17″x 32″. I controlled the draw-in better. The colors were planned.

The dishcloths are 10 epi and are made of cotton yarn. If your monitor isn’t too bright you just might see the pastel colors. they are app. 11×11 inches.

The quilt isn’t woven, but I thought I’d show it off, too.

Telly

Telly - Rag Rug
Telly – Rag Rug

Woven Rag Rug
Woven Rag Rug
Hand Made Quilt
Hand Made Quilt

Handwoven Dish Cloths in Loom
Handwoven Dish Cloths in Loom

Rug Weaving Books

Weaving Rag Rugs

The Rag Rug Handbook

Weaving Contemporary Rag Rugs: New Designs, Traditional Techniques

Weaving Western Sakiori: A Modern Guide for Rag Weaving

Favorite Rag Rugs

Wagon Wheel Rug Weaving

Historically, circular rugs were woven on a wagon wheel. You can also use a bicycle wheel, hula hoop or other round frame. Virginia gave directions on how she used a hula hoop for making her wagon wheel rug.

Wagon Wheel Rugs
Wagon Wheel Rugs

Wagon Wheel Rug
Wagon Wheel Rug

Wagon Wheel Rug
Wagon Wheel Rug

Materials and Supplies for Wagon Wheel Rug
There are four main sections of the rug requiring different lengths of cloth:
the main spokes, the fan strips, the inner hub, and the warp.

Main Spokes
You need 6 strips cut 2 1/4″ x 50″ using preferably a solid color. If you buy material for them,
a 36″ x 20″ piece of cloth could be cut into 16 strips each 2 1/4″ wide, all sewn together, and then cut into 50″ lengths.
A 45″ x 15″ piece of cloth could be cut into 20 strips each 2 1/4″ wide and sewn together and cut into 50″ lengths.
If you sew the strips together first, sew them together on a slant rather than straight across. Once you have the lengths cut, do a double fold on the strips turning both edges toward the center and then folding again so that you have strips about 1″ wide.
The Fan Strips
There are 12 “fans” in the rug design, each containing 9 strips of cloth of decreasing length. Since the rug cannot be made to exact measurements, the following are approximate lengths. A different color or pattern of cloth for each strip will give the rug a unique design each time. Since there are 12 fans, you need 12 strips of each strip listed.

Strip 1: 1 1/2″ x 45″ A 36″ x 23″ piece can be cut into 24 strips each 1 1/2″ wide, sewn together, and cut into 45″ lengths. A 45″ x 18″ piece can be cut into 30 strips and sewn together.

Strip 2: 1 1/2″ x 42″ A 36″ x 21″ can be cut into 24 strips, sewn together, and cut into 42″ lengths. A 45″ x 17″ piece can be cut into 30 strips, sewn together, and cut into 42″ lengths.

Strip 3: 1 1/2″ x 39″ A 36″ x 20″ piece of cloth can be cut into 24 strips, sewn together, and cut into 39″ lengths. A 45″ x 16″ can be cut into 30 strips, sewn together and cut.

Strip 4: 1 1/2″ x 36″ A 36″ x 18″ piece can be cut into 24 strips, sewn together and cut into 36″ lengths. A 45″ x 15″ piece can be cut into 30 strips, sewn together, and cut.

Strip 5: 1 1/2″ x 33″ A 36″ x 17″ piece can be cut into 24 strips, sewn together, and cut into 33″ lengths. A 45″ x 14″ piece can be cut into 30 strips, sewn together, and cut.

Strip 6: 1 1/2″ x 30″ A 36″ x 15″ piece of cloth can be cut into 24 strips, sewn together, and cut into 30″ lengths. A 45″ x 12″ can be cut into 30 strips, sewn together, and cut.

Strip 7: 1 1/2″ x 27″ A 36″ x 14″ piece of cloth can be cut into 24 strips, sewn together, and cut into 27″ lengths. A 45″ x 11″ can be cut into 30 strips, sewn together, and cut.

Strip 8: 1 1/2″ x 24″ A 36″ x 12″ piece of cloth can be cut into 24 strips, sewn together, and cut into 24″ lengths. A 45″ X 10″ piece can be cut into 30 strips, sewn together, and cut.

Strip 9: 1 1/2″ x 21″ A 36″ x 11″ piece of cloth can be cut into 24 strips, sewn together, and cut into 21″ lengths. A 45″ x 9″ piece can be cut into 30 strips, sewn together, and cut.

For each fan strip, and remember that there are 9 for each fan, double fold the edges under and sew into 1/2″ – 3/4″ strips. Remember that if you use different colors and patterns for each strip a unique design will result.

The Inner Hub
The inner hub is made of one strip of cloth 1 1/2″ x 48″ that IS NOT SEWN. It will be hand folded. It also needs to be one color, if possible.

The Warp
The warp is the long piece of material that weaves the spokes and the fan strips together. The warp, rather than starting with a very long piece, is more easily handled in 36″ strips each 1 1/2″ wide. The number of 36″ strips will vary slightly depending on the type of cloth used and how tightly it’s woven, but to start out, cut at least 5 strips 1 1/2″ x 36″. More can be easily provided later. The warp will be hand folded and NOT sewn.

Additional Supplies

  • A regular width hula hoop—-not the small size
  • Or a bicycle tire
  • Needle and thread to match the hub fabric and the warp
  • Pins
  • Scissors

Wagonwheel Rug Directions
Round 1: Two solid strips of material must be pinned to the hoop to form a cross. Measure from one point of the cross to the next to ensure exact distance. Overlap the ends at least 4 inches to provide a fringe for the rug when it is complete. Fold over the warp so that the raw edges do not show and sew around one of the crossed spokes in the middle. Weave over and under the other 3 spokes. NOTE: In order to weave, 2 spokes will have to be crossed over or under consecutively on each round. I suggest that you use different spokes each round.

Round 2: Before you return to the original spoke, you are ready to add the additional main spokes that match in color the original crossed spokes. Pin the end of 2 spoke to the hoop, fold it over by the hub, and return the other end to the hoop. Remember to overlap the edges 4 inches. Weave 2 spokes over or under together and continue weaving around the circle. You should now have 23 spokes on the hoop. Measure one more time to make sure that the spokes are evenly spaced around the hoop.

Round 3: Weave around the circle again using the same hub warp.

Rounds 4 and 5: Add an additional strip to the rug next to the spokes following the same process as in Round 2. Continue using the hub warp for two rounds.

All additional rounds: Change warp color. This makes the hub stand out from the remainder of the rug. Add a new colored strip and weave around 2 rounds per strip. Continue adding strips until the “v” or “fan” created between the original spokes is filled in.

When all the strips have been used (the number of strips will depend upon how wide they are), the rug is ready to be unpinned from the hoop. Carefully sew around the outside warp two times. Measure all the fringed strips and cut them to an even length. If washable materials have been used, the rug can be hand washed or machine washed on delicate.

Rag Rug Weaving
Wagon Wheel Rugs
T-Shirt Rugs
Rag Weaving
Roving Rug
Catalogne Rugs
Rug Hooking

Rug Weaving Books

Weaving Rag Rugs

The Rag Rug Handbook

Weaving Contemporary Rag Rugs: New Designs, Traditional Techniques

Weaving Western Sakiori: A Modern Guide for Rag Weaving

Favorite Rag Rugs

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Book Store: Rug hooking books

Pictorial Hooked Rugs
How to design, color plan, and display rugs with step-by-step techniques for hooking multiple pictorial elements .
UK: Pictorial Hooked Rugs

Rug Hooker’s Bible, The: The Best From 30 Years of Jane Olson’s Rugger’s Roundtable
Learn the best techniques of hooking a rug from beginning to end.
UK: Rug Hookers Bible

Prodded Hooking for a Three-Dimensional Effect
Techniques for different prodding methods and describes other forms of three-dimensional rug hooking.
UK: Prodded Hooking

Rug Hooking Learn at Home DVD: Vol. 1
Getting started and how to pull loops, Loop height and skipping holes, Loop direction, Straight and diagonal lines, Staggering ends, Hooking shapes, Hooking squares, Points and triangles, Hooking circles
UK: Rug Hooking Learn at Home

Kindle Rughooking Books

Hooking Mats and Rugs: 33 New Designs From An Old Tradition
Kindle Version
Whimsical designs for welcome mats, area rugs, chair pads, and other decorative household items. Inspired by the seascape, the people, and the long rug-making traditions of the communities of the Atlantic coast
UK: Hooking Mats and Rugs

Hooking Rugs: Storey’s Country Wisdom Bulletin A-120 (Storey Country Wisdom Bulletin)
Kindle version
Hands-on instructions designed to help readers master dozens of country living skills quickly and easily.
UK: Hooking Rugs

Hook, Loop ‘n’ Lock: Create Fun and Easy Locker Hooked Projects
Kindle version
31 original projects from various artists, complete with patterns and step-by-step instructions using a diverse combination of techniques, textures and materials–ribbons, beads and snazzy fibers, silk, mohair, wool … even recycled plastic bags.
UK: Hook Loop and Lock

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Book Store: Rug Weaving Books

Patterns and instructions on how to weave a rug.

Making Rag Rugs: 15 Step-by-Step Projects
Step-by-step instructions for 15 rugs that are hooked, prodded, clipped, or braided.
UK: Making Rag Rugs

The Rag Rug Handbook
Rag rugs from basic information to drafts for 20 traditional two- and four-shaft patterns.
UK:Rag Rug Handbook

The Braided Rug Book: Creating Your Own American Folk Art
The classic guide to an enduring American craft – Beginners will learn about wools and other materials, how to care for finished rugs, and how to recognize a quality rug.
UK: Braided Rug Book

Twined Rag Rugs: Tradition in the Making
Twining done with rag strips is an effective technique for making sturdy objects like rugs, bath mats, baskets, and bags.
UK: Twined Rag Rugs

Rya Tapestry Books

Finnish rya rug

Cum Rya
This book features many Scandinavian rugs written in English and Danish.
UK: Cum Rya

Hooked rugs & ryas;: Designing patterns and applying techniques
Rya: Designing patterns and applying techniques.
UK: Hooked Rugs and Ryas

Techniques of Rya Knotting
UK: Techniques of Rya Knotting

SWEDISH TEXTILE ART: Traditional Marriage Weavings from Scania (The Nasser D. Khalili Collection of Swedish Textile Art)
Focusing on the 95 textiles in the Khalili Collection, this volume discusses social conditions in Scania and the lives of the weavers, as well as the techniques, designs, and materials that they used.
UK: Swedish Textile Art
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3 to 120 Dye Study Project

This is a dye exercise that allows you to create over 120 dyes using just 3 colours. The 3 prime colours of dye are used – Cyan(Green/Blue), Magenta (Hot Pink) and Yellow. In this project, start with 3 large dyepots of dye. For each dye skein you will add a bit of colour from the other dyepot, to change the shade of color slightly. I used pure wool yarn for this dye project.

Dyepot 1 – Magenta to Cyan

Dyepot 2 – Cyan to Yellow

Dyepot 3 – Yellow to Magenta The colours will move progressively through the colour chart, changing from one prime colour, until the ending prime colour is reached.

The first time that I did this exercise, I wove all the dye samples into a rya tapestry.

3 To 150 Rya Rug
3 To 150 Rya Rug

The Dye Study
This is a dye exercise that allows you to create over 120 shades using just 3 dye colours. The 3 prime colours of dye are used – Cyan(Green/Blue), Magenta (Hot Pink) and Yellow.

In this dye project, I dyed about 15 lbs. of yarn. I have adjusted the instructions to a smaller amount of yarn. The amount of dye used will vary depending on the type of dyes that you are using. The procedure will be the same.

Repeat this exercise 3 times for the 3 different colour ranges.
Use 1 lb. of yarn for each colour range. Divide the yarn into 40 equal size skeins. Rinse the dye skeins.

You will need 2 large dyepots. Fill each dyepot with 4 litres of water. Add suffficient dye to each to make a fairly strong colour (enough to dye 1 lb of yarn). I used a CIBA acid dye, so I added vinegar to each dyepot to set the dyes.

Magenta to Cyan
Colour Range 1

Rya Rug Dye Study

For Colour Range 1
– I worked from the Magenta dyepot and added a bit of Cyan to change the colour.

Put the Magenta dyepot on the stove and heat until the dye solution is fairly hot. Add
1 dye skein and let it sit in the dye for about 20 minutes. Remove the dye skein, let it cool and rinse in cool water To create 40 different colours, the second dyepot solution is divided into 40 equal portions.

4 litres of water / 40 = .10 litres each

Using a measuring cup, measure out .10 litres of dye solution (Cyan)

Add .10 litres of Cyan to the Magenta dyepot and stir.

Put the 2nd dye skein into the Magenta dye mixture and let sit for about 20 minutes.

Remove the dye skein, let cool and rinse.

For the 3rd colour, measure another .10 litres of Cyan. Add this to the Magenta dyepot.

Put the 3rd dye skein into the Magenta dyepot. Let it sit for 20 minutes. Remove the dye skein, let cool and rinse.Repeat this procedure until all 40 skeins have been dyed.

Yellow to Magenta

Rya Rug Dye Study

Colour Range 2 – Yellow to Magenta

For Colour Range 2
I worked from the Yellow dyepot and added a bit of Magenta to change the colour.

Put the Yellow dyepot on the stove and heat until the dye solution is fairly hot. Add
1 dye skein and let it sit in the dye for about 20 minutes. Remove the dye skein, let it cool and rinse in cool water To create 40 different colours, the second dyepot solution is divided into 40 equal portions.

4 litres of water / 40 = .10 litres each

Using a measuring cup, measure out .10 litres of dye solution (Magenta)

Add .10 litres of Magenta dye solution to the Yellow dyepot and stir.

Put the 2nd dye skein into the Yellow dye mixture and let sit for about 20 minutes.

Remove the dye skein, let cool and rinse.

For the 3rd colour, measure another .10 litres of Magenta. Add this to the Yellow dyepot.

Put the 3rd dye skein into the Yellow mix dyepot. Let it sit for 20 minutes. Remove the dye skein, let cool and rinse.

Repeat this procedure until all 40 skeins have been dyed.

Cyan to Yellow

Rya Rug Dye Study

Colour Range 3 – Cyan to Yellow

For Colour Range 3

– I worked from the Cyan dyepot and added a bit of Yellow to change the colour.

Put the Cyan dyepot on the stove and heat until the dye solution is fairly hot. Add
1 dye skein and let it sit in the dye for about 20 minutes. Remove the dye skein, let it cool and rinse in cool water To create 40 different colours, the second dyepot solution is divided into 40 equal portions.

4 litres of water / 40 = .10 litres each

Using a measuring cup, measure out .10 litres of dye solution (Yellow)

Add .10 litres of Yellow dye solution to the Cyan dyepot and stir.

Put the 2nd dye skein into the Cyan dye mixture and let sit for about 20 minutes.

Remove the dye skein, let cool and rinse.

For the 3rd colour, measure another .10 litres of Yellow. Add this to the Cyan dyepot.

Put the 3rd dye skein into the Cyan mix dyepot. Let it sit for 20 minutes. Remove the dye skein, let cool and rinse.

Repeat this procedure until all 40 skeins have been dyed.

Dye Study Blues

Rya Rug Dye Study
Rya Rug Dye Study
Dye Study Yellow

Rya Rugs
History of the Rya Rug
Rya Rug Repair
Finnish Rya Rugs
Hemp Rya Tapestry

Rya Tapestry Books

Hand-made C.U.M. Rya Rugs

Techniques of Rya Knotting

Hooked rugs & ryas;: Designing patterns and applying techniques