Making A Latchhook Rug

Rug hooking is accomplished by pulling yarn or cloth through a stiff woven base to create a pattern of your choosing. This guide is about making a latch hook rug.

The start of a latchhook rug on a canvas
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The start of a latchhook rug on a canvasI have been wanting to make a rug for a while and finally decided on how to do it. While in my local craft store, I found a nice sized latch hook canvas. I started saving my little yarn clippings from knitting and crocheting and now I am using them for my rug!

It is going to take me a while to complete, but in the end, I will have a really cool, multicolored rug made out of recycled little pieces of yarn that would have gone in the garbage.

By Amy from Long Branch, NJ

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A latch hook rug made from recycled fabrics.I try to think 'outside the box' for recycling. Sometimes I don't always have rug canvas. I made a rug from a less-than-lovely knitted throw and some old t-shirts. Everything is machine washable, and I didn't have to run out and get rug canvas. A latch hook rug made from recycled fabrics.

I cut the t-shirts into small 1 inch wide and 3 inch long strips and created a latch hook rug. It was easier for me to fold the t-shirt strips in half lengthwise as I latch hooked them into the knitted throw. In the second photo, you can see a view of the back of the throw. The back of a latchhook rug made with recycled fabrics.

Editor's Note: Following are photos of the steps Monica followed: Step 1, pulling up loop through throw. Step 2, pull ends of fabric through loop. Step 1- pulling fabric through loop. Step 4, pull on two ends of fabric to tighten. Step 5 - continue above steps until throw completed covered.

By Monica from Cortez, CO

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I just received materials for a latch hook rug, so I am basically starting from scratch. What is a simple, budget-wise, non-stick backing for it?

By Carolyn

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I've read that a non-skid back can be made by "painting "on sealant that you'd normally use for cracks or adhering smooth materials together. It comes in a tube that you use w/ a caulking gun. Its pretty cheap too. I plan on trying it as a slip-less bottom for fleece slipper socks I make.

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I am looking for anyone that has some info on how to make a hooked rug from rags! Help!

Shel from KS

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I think I have a better answer for you.... I posted here before about rug hooking & rug punching, but tonight I was in Walmart & saw just what you're looking for it's called "American "Locker Hooking" or just plain "Locker Hooking" or sometimes "Anchored Loop Rugs" The technique is totally different from "rug punching" or "rug Hooking" This style is done with a tool called a "Locker Hook" it looks just like a crochet hook with an eye (like a very large needle) on the end. This technique is most commonly done with 100% cotton fabric of many bright colors or old blue jeans. It can also be done with wool yarn or fancy novelty yarn. Locker Hooking was invented in the UK in about 1900... There are at least 3 different styles of locker hooking: American, British/Irish & Australian. Some people use unspun, carded wool. But the new thing is to use cotton fabric strips or fancy novelty yarn.

Supplies Required:

--- Rug Canvas--- with large holes (3.75 per inch) smaller if you choose to use yarn instead of fabric. (a note: the type of rug canvas usually used is the same type used in "Latch Hook " Rugs, the shag type kits & patterns they sell for kids in the craft stores)

--- Locker Hook Tool (about the size of a size "G" crochet hook) Avail at most Walmart's

--- 100% cotton fabric (because 100% cotton rips better than 50/50 & who wants to cut all that fabric when you could easily just rip it instead!)

--- 100% cotton yarn or rope (about the size of "worsted weight" yarn)

The Basic Technique:

--- Tear fabric strips into 1 inch widths,

--- Fold fabric in half with right side out

--- Put fabric strip under the rug canvas

--- Thread "Locker Hook Tool" (LHT) with the cotton yarn or rope

--- Insert hook into first hole & pull up a loop of the fabric strip just big enough to push locker hook tool through, continue in a row to insert hook & pull up a loops until you have about 7 or so loops on your locker hook tool.

--- When you have about 7 - 10 loops on your LHT, push the hook through the loops, thus bringing the cotton yarn through the loops & locking the loops in. (this was it's washable & durable)

You will need more instructions so you know how to finish off the excess cotton yarn & how to knot the cotton strips together. Look at the pictures in the $15 book that many Walmart's sell for ideas & directions. Below are some URL of how to: ... Down-Home-Craft-From-Down-Under.aspx

SUPPLIES for Locker Hooking:


Here is a quote from Australian Mother Earth News (above URL):

WHAT'S NEEDED? To try your hand at locker hooking, you'll need a locker hook, locker cord or yarn, rug canvas, a yarn needle, wool, andif raw wool is to be useda metal comb or wire-bristled cards

The locker hook (see Fig. 1) resembles a rug hook or heavy crochet hook with a large eye opposite the hook end. Like a traditional rug hook, it has to be fairly deep to accommodate the thick fibers used. If locker hooks aren't available at your local craft shop, they can be mail-ordered (see the end of this article for the names and addresses of two suppliers).

Locker yarn should be sturdy cord or yarn just fine enough to be easily threaded through the hook's eye. Four-ply knitting wool is the ideal yarn, but other types can be used successfully. Any color is suitable because the yarn doesn't show . . . but it is best to choose one that blends with the basic color of your hooked piece.

Sized rug canvas without a plastic coating is used for the backing. Plastic-coated canvas is the type most often found in craft outlets, but it cuts the wool fibers and won't soften enough when washed to be compatible with this supple filling. Cotton or cotton-polyester canvas also seems to serve the purpose better than the 100% polyester variety. Be sure to specify which type you need when you buy. Mesh size of three or four squares per inch is suitable.

A yarn needle, easily purchased in any department store or craft outlet, is needed for concealing the locker yarn ends and finish ing the edges of the project if it's intended as a rug or wall hanging.

To read the rest go to: ... Down-Home-Craft-From-Down-Under.aspx


*One more idea: If you have a lot of strips of fabric or rags, you could also make a braided rag rug. (like in colonial days) They now have a tool you can buy at the fabric stores that is used in making "Bias Tape" this tool folds your strips of fabric for you. Here's Directions:

* Another idea: I had a friend who collected old sheets (from friends & the thrift stores) she would use a super-huge crochet hook & make really nice large rugs by crocheting fabric strips. When dirty, she just through them in the wash! ... ailNews.asp?idNews=1188&idSM=307

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Does anyone know of any sites that have patterns for latch hooking that are not for children? Everywhere I look, all I can seem to find are patterns for kids. I want patterns for my home that don't pertain to kids.

By Cricket from Parkton, NC

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You can also make and print your own patterns. Just upload a picture that you'd like to do to There you can chose how many per inch tall and wide, also how big you want the project to be. It will create a pattern for you and tell you how much yarn you will need for the project.

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Take a yard of material and fold 3/4 of it up and sew in squares like a shoe organizer. Use this for your yarn when making a hook rug. You can tape the number and the color of thread on each square so you can use it over and over with each rug.

By Janet

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Crafts RugsNovember 6, 2012
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