The Legendary Toothbrush Rug

Working with textiles as long as I have, the toothbrush rug is no stranger to many.  I recall these things being around when I was young, but did not know them by anything other than a rug.  This is a very easy concept that can use a huge range of supplies instead of cloth, although cloth is my go to (as I have so much of it!)

I have seen these made from bread wrappers and plastic shopping bags.  This is a great way to keep those out of the landfill.  For those you would make your strips from the plastic and that is called plarn (a play on words with plastic and yarn).

You can make this with rope, clothesline comes to mind.  Old tshirts or sheets upcycled to pretty your floor and pad your feet.

I have made one from the fabric balls you see at the header of every blog.  I finally used them!  I had made my strips for this before I started my blog with the intention that this would become a rug.  And finally that has happened.

There are some good notes out on the world wide web for direction on this.  I had made one of these about 5 years ago.  The cat had kittens and this 5 year old rug was used in the box.  I loosely wove this one and was afraid it would bite the dust after it had its first washing.  To my surprise, it did marvelously!

Toothbrush Rug

This one is. made from fabric that I had had in my stash and moved many times.  I was tired of looking at it, had no plans slated for the cloth so I tore them with the grain.  When showing a picture of this 5 year old rug to my coworker, she said it looked like I purposely put a foot print in the middle of it.  That was very unintentional, and now that image/idea is burned into my noggin, every time I look at the rug, I think of the footprint.  There is more than 10 yards of fabric in this one and was glad to put the fabric to use.

If you are interested in making your own toothbrush rug, there are great instructions how to make the toothbrush tool as well as the rug.  Here is the link for both.

If you would like to learn how to make quick fabric strips for a rug as well as tying the amish knot, check this video tutorial out.

Now she tells you in the video to press your strips.  I refuse to do that.  In fact, I think the rug has more variety if you don’t.  It is a rug for pete’s sake, why iron 10 yards of fabric right?

Here is my second attempt at toothbrush rugging.  My stitches are tighter, I wanted a very dense rug.  There is more than 10 yards in this one, and this one is small.  Ooops, here it is again in the wee hours of Saturday morning and I failed to measure.  I think this turned out around 30 inches round give or take.


There are the three inner fabrics, all taken from fabric balls made too long ago.  Two more fabrics were used after the pink.  I like the scrappy look to this, and got to thinking, perhaps I should put my vintage sheet box in work, and make a rug.  I pulled a bunch of the sheets that were not very pretty and started tearing them.  This will certainly be scrappy, and I get to deplete part of that project box.  Here is the start of that one.  Since I have snapped this photo I have come a good ways on it and will probably come close to finishing sometime this weekend.


This week I had the dreaded jury duty.  I did my civic duty and showed up.  Was there 10 minutes.  The guy did not show up for court (it was a traffic ticket of some kind), collected my 10 bucks and left.  This was pretty good money….one dollar a minute.  This  left me a whole day to do as I wish.

So I went to the local SNAP Center to hang out.  SNAP stands for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.  It helps those on a very tight budget to eat a a meal at no cost to them.  It might help an elderly person, or a homeless person.  This program in our area also helps with Meals On Wheels.

Our SNAP Center has hand quilters set up with their proddy frame and they stitch to benefit the snap center.  This group has a long list of people signed up for hand quilting services (me included).  The quilt I am about to show you is about queen size.  The ladies have been working on this one for three weeks, which is longer than usual.  This quilt, because of it’s size and stitch pattern is taking longer.  They will be charging less than $200 for hand quilting this, HOLY COW!  My pictures and the lighting do not do this quilt justice.


Each block is framed by quilting, as well as quilting around all the embroidery.  I think there was straight line quilting in the sashing too.  What a bargain!


Won’t this be beautiful when finished?!  If you are interested in contact information, leave a comment.  I will get you a phone number (which you can only call in the mornings) and you to can be put on the list for hand quilting services, all benefiting a good cause.  Once I put the comment up, I will only leave it up for so long and then it will come down.  There are too many BOTS out there that will spam the heck out of this number.  For subscribers, I have your email on file and can always email that info to you.  Just drop me a line!

I am off for the weekend, and hope to vegetate much, melding to the couch, binge watching Amazon Prime and Bonekickers.

Have a great weekend!




2 thoughts on “The Legendary Toothbrush Rug

  1. I too have just come back to finish a toothbrush rug that has been sitting around for too long, and I too refuse to press the strips. I agree, it looks better with the various sides and edges showing. Your rug is lovely.


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