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Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Braided Rug for Little Artistas Ghiradelli Location: Part 1

Earlier this year, I got make a rug out of recycled materials for Little Artistas. (You can read about it here and here.) It now lives at the Noe Valley location in their little reading nook. 

Anna, the founder of Little Artistas, loved the rug so much that she asked for a second one for the new Ghiradelli location they opened this summer!
This new rug was especially fun for me because I got to be involved every step of the way. 

We started by going to SCRAP (Scrounger's Center for Reusable Art Parts), where we made a beeline for the fabric aisle and used the color scheme for the new studio to pick out coordinating colors. 

(Sorry for poor picture quality, SCRAP does not exactly have great lighting.)

The colors on the right would start at the center, and then move out to the colors on the left. We picked a mixture of solids and patterns partly to add visual interest, but also so there would be enough fabric. 

A note about the plan for this rug: we really didn't know how big it was going to be. I measured out my table and guessed I could make a rug about 6 feet in diameter, but we had no way of knowing how much fabric we would need to make this happen. We just kind of guessed, and we did a pretty good job! 

I took all the fabric home, washed, sorted, and cut it into strips. 

Here's some (not all) of the fabric lined up. I added in some fabrics from my own collection so I could start cleaning out before moving away (still very sad about losing my fabric collection). 

Same as with the last rug, I braided and braided and braided, sewing strips together as I went. I also sewed up part of the rug, but stopped when it grew too big for where my machine lived at the time (in a corner in my room). 

Because of the variety of fabric Anna and I found for the rug, the size of the braid was not consistent all the way through. This was a little tricky to sew later, but I actually think the inconsistent strips look really nice when the rug came together. 

Eventually, the wicker basket you see above was filled with braided fabric. And then a section of the floor of my room was also covered. And then I started nearing the last few bundles of fabric and so...

I moved Belutha (that's the name of my sewing machine) out into the dining room and put her next to the table so I could use the whole table for rotating the rug. 

Let me tell you, this was one heck of a workout. 

I had waited until the very end to move to this set up so the crowded dining room would only be an issue for as short a time as possible. I then spent a couple straight days sewing around and around and around...

I used up so much thread on this too. But I love all the different color threads that are in the rug! It adds to the busy-ness and gives the rug another dimension. 

In two weeks, there will be another post with final images!
See you then, 
Taft WK 

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