5 DIY Rug Techniques to Give Your Boring Rugs a New Look

Kara S.
by Kara S.
2 Materials

I love using rugs to add warmth and color to my rooms, but from time to time they need replacing. That doesn’t mean you need to throw the old rugs out. Far from it! Check out these five DIY rug techniques to turn your boring old rugs into exciting new creations that will give them – and your floors – a new lease on life. They’re easy to follow and I’ll walk you through each one in simple steps. Let’s get started!

How to Create Unique DIY Rugs

Get the full instructions here:

- Rope Rug

- Recycled Rag Rug

- Night Light Rug

- Wall Decor

Create a Stylish Rope Rug

Tools and Materials

  • Sisal rope
  • Spandex material
  • Non-slip rug backing
  • Glue gun and glue sticks
  • Scissors

I had a couple of rolls of sisal rope that I didn’t have a use for, along with about a ½ yard of red spandex material – the perfect ingredients for an eye-catching rug! You can achieve the same look with whatever color material you have to hand, or use multiple colors to suit the décor in a particular room.

Step 1: Gather Your Rope Rug Materials

It may sound like a really obvious way to start, but you’ve got to make sure you have everything you need to hand before you get to work. It would be a real shame to spend all that time wrapping fabric around rope to make pretty coils, only to find out that you’ve not got any rug backing to stick them onto. Believe me, this is a lesson I learned the hard way!

Step 2: Cut the Fabric into Strips

Grab your scissors and cut your fabric into strips. Be sure to make the strips fairly wide so that they stand up to the chunkiness of the rope. I wanted the red, wrapped rope sections of my DIY rug to really pop and I found this was a good way to make them stand out – thinner strips didn’t work as well.


Step 3: Wrap the Rope

This is where your glue gun comes in handy. Cut a length of rope and then glue the end of the rope firmly to the end of your first strip of material. As soon as it’s set, you can start wrapping the material around the rope. I used dots of glue as I worked to hold the material and rope together and to keep the spacing between the twists fairly even. Once you’ve wrapped the full length of your piece of rope, glue the fabric and rope together at the end. Repeat with different lengths of rope for different sized coils.


Step 4: Coil the Rope onto the Backing

This part takes a little patience to do neatly. Lay out your coils how you would like them to appear on the finished rug (be sure to use an old cloth to protect your table from any drips from the glue gun). Then glue the rug backing to the coils and wait until the glue sets. After that, you need to cut the backing around the edges of the outer coils and (the fiddly bit) in the gaps between the coils. And that’s it!


Make a Rag Rug DIY Waste Can

Tools and Materials

  • Rag rug
  • Small waste can
  • Heavy-duty glue
  • Scissors

I love the multi-colored nature of rag rugs, but sometimes a change of décor in a room can leave an old rag rug homeless. That’s why I trialed this rag rug DIY waste can – to see how I could turn a rag rug that was no longer needed into something stylish for my home. The result was a waste can like no other!

Step 1: Gather Your Rag Rug DIY Materials 

You only need minimal materials for this rug DIY project. Just be sure that the glue you choose is strong enough to stick the rug firmly to the waste can. You also need to ensure that the waste can is small enough that the rug will wrap the whole way around it – it doesn’t look quite as stylish with a gap on one side!

Step 2: Cut the Rug to Fit the Waste Can

Wrap the rug around the waste can tightly, so that there are no air pockets or loose sections. Then use sharp scissors to cut the rug down to size at the bottom and top of the can. Finally, trim off any excess material where the rug overlaps around the can.

Step 3: Glue

Glue the rug firmly into place by running a solid line of glue around the can about an inch from the top and the same distance from the bottom. Squirt plenty of glue in between your top and bottom circles to ensure that the rug sticks on all sides. Then simply wrap the cut section of your rug around the waste can and wait for the glue to dry.


Create an Elegant Night Light Rug

Tools and Materials

  • Rope lights
  • Crochet yarn
  • Crochet hook

I love this creative way to use rope lights to make a feature DIY rug that any child will love to have in their room. If you have rope lights sitting in a box that only come out at Christmas, why not enjoy them year-round instead? This is an incredibly simple rug to make and one that can’t help but charm.

Step 1: Gather Your Materials

This super easy DIY rug needs only rope lights, crochet yarn, and a crochet hook to make. You can pick a yarn that blends into the color scheme of the room that the rug is destined for or else opt for a multicolored yarn that turns the rug into a standout feature.


Step 2: Crochet Your Rug Around the Rope Light

Crochet a small length of yarn to get started and coil it around in a tight circle. Next, insert the end of the rope light into your work before continuing to crochet around the rope itself. Continue coiling the crocheted rope as you work, so that you end up with a neatly coiled, round rug.

Step 3: Enjoy

Once your rope light rug is complete, it’s time to share it with your child. I found it was most fun to show them the rug first and then wait until bedtime to turn the rope lights on. The excitement of discovering that the rug lights up and becomes a night light is a really magical moment.

Make a Faux Iron Work Wall Hanging

Tools and Materials

  • Rubber doormat
  • Spray paint
  • Old sheet or a large piece of thick card stock
  • Hammer
  • Nails
  • Wall plugs

This is a superb way to give an old rubber doormat a new lease of life in just a couple of simple steps. It creates an eye-catching faux iron wall décor that adds a real touch of contemporary style to the home and is super easy to create, even for DIY rug beginners.

Step 1: Gather Your Materials

You’ll need to work in a well-ventilated room to undertake this DIY rug project, so gather your materials in a suitable space in your home or even outside if the weather permits. I used an old sheet to put under the mat while painting it, but you could also use a thick rectangle of card – go for one that the whole mat fits on and you can create an interesting artwork to mount on the wall alongside the rug!

Step 2: Paint the Doormat

Use your spray paint to ensure an even coat of paint across the surface of the mat. Follow the instructions on the can in terms of spray distance. Move around the mat and spray from different angles to ensure that you don’t miss any bits. Allow to dry fully before hanging.

Step 3: Hang

Use your hammer and nails to hang the rug on the wall. The design of the rug should mean that there are plenty of gaps that you can use to hang it from the nails, so no fancy fixings are required. Just be sure to use wall plugs if you are worried about the nails taking the mat’s weight.

Create Your Own DIY Striped Rug

Tools and Materials

  • Thick pile rug
  • Bleach spray
  • Old sheet
  • Duct tape
  • Scissors

Rugs are, unfortunately, in a prime position for attracting spillages and there’s little more annoying than spilling something on a rug that bleaches the color out of it. However, I found that this simple DIY rug project was perfect for turning a ruined rug into a feature floor covering in its own right.

Step 1: Gather Your Materials

You’ll be using bleach spray to create the stripes on this rug, so be sure to have an old sheet to hand that you can place under the rug while using the spray. You don’t want to end up with bleach stains on your carpet as well as your rug! I also made sure to open a few windows to get rid of the smell of the bleach as quickly as possible.

Step 2: Tape Your Rug

Use the duct tape to create neat, evenly spaced stripes across your rug (actually, you could go for differently sized stripes if you prefer – I just wanted mine to be evenly space for this particular DIY rug project!). Stick the duct tape down firmly to ensure your stripes will have neat, straight edges.


Step 3: Bleach

Place the rug on top of an old sheet that you don’t mind getting bleach on. Now, spray bleach evenly all over the stripes of rug that have been left exposed by the duct tape. Spray from different angles to ensure even coverage. Be sure to wear suitable eye, nose, mouth and/or hand protection while doing so, according to the instructions on the spray. Leave to dry.

Step 4: Remove Tape

This is the exciting part. Carefully peel off the strips of duct tape. The rug under the tape should have retained its original color, while the sections exposed to the bleach should have lightened and changed color. As such, you now have a stylish striped rug instead of your old, bleach-stained rug. Superb!


Making your own DIY rug is a great way to give an old rug a new lease of life. Finding new uses for old things is part of living more sustainably. It’s also a wonderful way to create a unique home that reflects your personality and creative nature. And who doesn’t want that? 


Your DIY rug work is only as limited as your imagination, so why not create your own DIY ideas, using this tutorial as inspiration? You can leave a comment to share details of how you get on! 

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  • Madison Stephens Madison Stephens on Oct 04, 2017
    The only one of these giving an old rug a new look was the last one. The first one was making a new rug, the second was repurposing and old rug, the third again was making a new rug, the fourth was taking a new door mat and making it "art", and finally the last one was actually giving an old rug a new look. Take it from a graphic designer, this would be considered false advertising AND/OR click bait.

  • Lilly Fowler Lilly Fowler on Oct 04, 2017
    My last pay check was $9500 working 12 hours a week online. My sisters friend has been averaging 15k for months now and she works about 20 hours a week. I can't believe how easy it was once I tried it out. Read more this web.. Good luck... http://ow.ly/DPlP30fDKPh