Welcome to My Red Cape. Long ago in another time my husband Jack and I lived in a little old red house. It was the stuff of dreams to us for the few years that we were there. I live there still a number of hours every day in imagination, with old dolls and paintings and fabrics and feather trees. I draw inspiration and happiness from the memories of that space in time and share some of it here with friends who remember how to step with Alice through the looking glass and take delight in whimsies and antiquities.

For more than sixty years I have studied, collected, repaired, and bought and sold antique dolls. They have been back ground music in my life at every stage, sometimes louder, sometimes subdued, but always there with me. To see only the posts about dolls on this blog, click the banner on the right titled Dolls for My Red Cape. Keep clicking “Older Posts” to see more. Some of the posts featuring rug hooking are gathered under the banner For Cathy. From time to time items are offered for sale under the banner “O’Neill’s Antiques” which was our shop name for many years. ~Edyth O’Neill

Friday, October 25, 2013

For Cathy, Hooked Rug Binding

Just as it is oversimplification to say that weaving is just putting a shuttle over one thread and under the next, so it is oversimplification to feel that hooking a rug is only a matter of hooking a loop repeatedly.
  There are so many topics about the craft that we have not touched on yet. 

I know that you will be binding your first small project soon.  First and foremost we hem the edges of a rug so that the backing cannot ravel away and take our rug with it! 

The reason for applying a binding to the edge is not only for esthetic reasons, but to protect this edge from wear. On a floor rug the first place to show wear is almost always the outer edge. By binding this vulnerable spot, we protect the linen backing from wear, as when the applied binding needs to be replaced it can be.  On a tiny piece that will have little or no wear, a simple unbound hem is excusable.  A prettier solution is that shown on the half round here, backing with a single piece of wool the full size of the project.

 Old fashioned rug binding tape, sturdy twill sold for this purpose is another solution. The larger floor rug in these pictures is bound in twill tape, heavy and 1 1/4 inches wide. It should be dabbed out in hot water before use, so it will not later shrink if wet.    See how the tape has been stitched to make a wider piece, making a casing on the top back of the rug, it was hung on a wall this way for a while.  A casing with a rod or a stick is always a good way to hang a rug.  Never use tacks in the body of a rug!  A dozen reasons no. 

The binding I use most often is a strip of pretty wool plaid coordinated with the rug itself.  This is torn on the straight of the wool fabric, 1 1/2 to 2 inches wide. It is shown gathered at the corners of one mat, and mitered at the corners of the little doll sized chicken rug.

What ever binding you use, remember to cover the edge of the linen backing well.      Happy hooking!  e

1 comment:

  1. I love all your tips for rug binding. And the pictures are most helpful. This is the part of rug hooking that I find most intimidating. I don't know why. I just need to gather my courage, straighten my spine, and do it! Mary


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