Fringe Benefits

finished fringe
As Lisa says on her blog Rug Chick; “Fringe. People love it. Or they hate it.”

I’m not sure which side of this fence Grace is on. She either loves (to eat) it, or she hates it so much she would rather eat it than for it to be a part of our home. Either way, any fringed rugs I bring into the house get trimmed pretty quickly.
Eaten Fringe
As this is a handwoven rug the fringe is actually the ends of the warps of the rug. This means it is integral to the structure of the rug and there is a real possibility of the rug coming apart if they get trimmed too short. As you can see this has started to happen on my rug.
The sooner I mend this the better. As my mam says; “a stitch in time saves nine!”

Inspired by Tom of Holland I am going to repair this visibly (and as beautifully as I can) to celebrate the repair instead trying to disguise it.

I am going to use red wool to reference the red motifs on the rug. I will also need my little scissors and a sturdy largish needle.
wool, scissors and needle
It is easier to see the structure of the rug from its underside.
rug underside
First of all I am going to trim all of the damaged fringe so I can see what I am doing.
trimmed fringe
Next I will use overcast stitch to wrap over the edge to prevent it coming apart further. In order for the rug not to come apart further it is important to anchor the stitch to different wefts (the width-ways threads). I have done this with a combination of weaving into the wefts with a few stitches through to the other side. Try not to split any of the threads with your needle – stitch in underneath or between, not through the threads.
overcast stitch
Here is how it looks right-side up.
overcast front
Now that the rug’s integrity has been saved I am going to focus on its appearance. I went back along the damaged area with overcast stitch, preventing the old fringe from poking out.
This will all be covered with the new fringe that I am going to make.
new fringe
I sewed two strands through at a time, cutting them to a bit longer than the remaining old fringe. Then I knotted them over the edge of the rug to hold them in place.
finished fringe
I sewed the new fringe in place, making sure to sew over the knots so that they wouldn’t pull out. Then finally trimmed the new fringe to the desired length.
One finished rug! I could have trimmed all of the old fringe off and completely replaced it, but I liked the contrast between the old and the new. Now I just need to keep it away from Grace!

Molly decided to help me with the wool. Don’t worry if you don’t have a helper – it might be quicker without!
Molly and Wool


One thought on “Fringe Benefits

  1. Pingback: Tread Carefully (Another Chewed Mat) | Beautiful Repair

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