RUGS – recycled textiles

Despite wanting to upcycle as much waste as possible in my art, and attend to the plethora of plastics invading our planet, I have tired of using them, and gone back to natural fibres including wonderful wool. A textile colleague showed me how she had felted old and disintegrating woollen garments and then converted them into a blanket. It inspired me to take the concept and play with designs and materials, using woollens from my expansive collection of materials in the studio.

Making them was fun, finding colour pallets that mixed and merged, cutting, patching, blending and hand sewing. What resulted were several rugs – soft and muted, colourful and resilient, and all very cosy – you cannot resist wanting to feel them and wrap yourself into them.

Then a friend handed me a big box of acrylic garments, a collection of early new millennium colour that I don’t typically have in my collection. But needing a large expansive rug for a king size bed I embarked on the next stage of rugs, and this one turned into a crazy paving mix. Machine and hand sewing came to the fore, and as it emerged I was not sure if it was going to come off. However I persevered and ended up with a colourful expanse that is pleasing to the eye, seems to make people smile and laugh, and better still, its used up a pile of discarded dated acrylic clothes, saving them going into landfill.


From here on some ideas are coming up to use old garments and materials to create other items…so I’ll be exploring those. I’ll also have my rugs on display at Margaret River Region Open Studios 2018, showing how I work them up, and giving people the opportunity to have a go at the techniques. Following Open Studios I’ll be offering workshops for people to come and have some fun developing their own upcycled rug projects.



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