Tons of functional designs can be made from recycled and surplus supplies.
Rugs are one example of useful items that can be made from resources that are already on hand, or readily available ones that can be saved up for a project.
Plastic bags make sturdy, lasting rugs that are perfect for outdoor weather. Their colors can be incorporated into patterns and assembled into any size. Also, their constant free supply makes them an ideal material.
Homestead Weaving Studio makes “bag-in-a-tree rugs” which were inspired by driving through rural Indiana and Southern Illinois in the U.S. and observing the many plastic bags littered along the treescape. An imaginative weaver and litter hater puts the trash to use and recycles them in into durable outdoor rugs. Using plastic bags with handles, the rugs are formed by weaving together the pliable plastic ribbons on a floor loom.
Also, a design that was passed on from a relative is the rustic braided rag rug, which can be made from old rags, towels, clothes or other fabrics. The rugs are formed by cutting rags into strips and braiding them into a pattern, repeating until the desired shape is achieved. These can be turned into personalized indoor rugs without sewing, looming or using any tools, only leftover fabrics and braid willing hands.
Another simple approach that uses old clothes and fabrics is the pot holder weave-and-loom process, which produces practical and washable area rugs.
The Re Rag Rug project repurposes old, un-wearable sweaters and T-shirts into interesting designs. An exhibition of the creations that were made from cast off pieces during the course of a year is planned for August, 2013, ensuring to make a statement about the possibilities of sustainable production processes.
10 more interesting do it yourself rug designs that use salvaged supplies can be found at Cheap Crafty Mama. Made from recycled materials, the rug designs include a wine cork rug that is perfect for bathrooms and as seen below, an impressive rope rug.
Remember to use non-slip padding underneath homemade rugs if they move around underfoot, such as on a slippery or waxed floor surface to avoid accidents. Non-slip rug backing can be purchased that is made from recycled resources, or you can use objects you may already have that will adhere well to flooring, like placemats and old bath mats.
Rugs made from reused objects, without using glues or other chemical processes, make them a practical project. The initial process may take a bit of practice and requires saving up materials, but once the technique is mastered the only limitation involved is having the time to make more rugs.
Image Source: Cheap Crafty Mama
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