Have you ever wondered what to do with all of those old socks piling up in your drawers and closet? Don’t throw them away! With a little creativity and craftiness, you can upcycle those unwanted socks into a fun and functional rug for your home.
Gather Your Materials
- Old socks. Look for socks that are stained, have holes, or are missing their match. The more varied colors and patterns the better. Both tube and ankle socks will work.
- Fabric scissors. You’ll need a good pair of sharp scissors to cut your socks to size.
- Rug backing. Look for a flexible backing material such as burlap, felt, or canvas. This will hold all of your socks together.
- Fabric glue. Opt for a glue made specifically for fabrics and textiles. It should dry flexible, not stiff.
- Tape measure. Needed for measuring and cutting your rug backing and arranging the socks.
Prepare Your Sock Fabric
Go through your sock collection and select the ones you want to use. Here are a few tips:
- Look for bright, fun patterns and colors. This will make your finished rug really pop.
- Cut off the elastic ankle bands on tube socks. This will give the rug a flatter shape.
- Toss single socks. Use those with intact pairs only for uniformity.
- Sort socks by color or pattern if you want an orderly arrangement. Or mix it up for a more eclectic, random look.
Once you’ve gathered your socks, flatten each pair out and use fabric scissors to cut them to approximately the same size. The cut edges don’t need to be perfect since the rug backing will hold everything together.
Cut Your Rug Backing
Determine the approximate size and shape you want for your finished rug. Rectangular and square shapes work well.
Measure and cut your backing material several inches larger than the planned size on all sides. This will make it easier to work as you arrange and glue down the socks.
Place your backing fabric on a flat work surface and smooth it out.
Arrange and Glue Your Socks
Now comes the fun part – playing with sock patterns, colors and arrangements! There are lots of options here:
For a striped or orderly look: Arrange socks in alternating colors or graduated patterns in rows across the backing.
For an eclectic, random arrangement: Simply begin gluing socks down in no particular color order. Let creativity guide you!
For a statement rug: Use only a select color or pattern like red and white stripes or argyle prints.
As you arrange socks on the backing:
Overlap sock edges slightly for full coverage.
Vary sock pile direction for visual interest.
Glue socks securely in place, applying an even coat of glue to the sock underside before pressing onto backing. Smooth each piece fully.
Work your way across the backing until the surface is entirely covered.
Once your rug backing is completely covered in sock fabric, let the glue dry fully – usually 24 hours. Then use fabric scissors to trim the edges, straightening and shaping as desired.
Overlock or zigzag stitch around the outer edges to secure the rug and prevent fraying.
Add a non-slip rug pad for safety and to protect floors.
Vacuum periodically to remove dust and dirt from the sock pile.
Avoid washing machines as this can destroy the glue. Spot clean carefully instead.
Now you have a functional and eco-friendly accent rug made from old socks that would otherwise end up in the trash! Your new sock rug will add a pop of color and texture to any room.