Rug hooks can be purchased or made at home. Simply hammer a nail into a piece of wood and remove the nail head. File the end of the nail into a hook, then whittle the wooden handle to fit your hand.
To prepare the strips of fabric, you can use scraps of cloth or rags just as they are, or dye them with chemical or natural dyes. Cut the scraps into strips measuring between 5 mm and 1 cm wide. Appropriate materials include those with a fine weave such as shirts and blouses, nightgowns, bathing suits, stockings, undershirts, and tights.
In earlier times, women traced patterns with piece of charcoal. Today, artists use various types of markers including lead or coloured pencils, wax or fabric crayons, ballpoint or felt-tip pens. In general, they prefer to use a dark felt-tip pen.
Step 1: The canvas
The canvas must be stretched on the wooden frame, held in place with staples or nails, and pulled tight to avoid warping.
Step 2: The design
Using a pattern, trace the design or motif you want to reproduce, or draw your own design freehand. You can also buy preprinted canvases.
Step 3: Hooking
The frame can either be supported on your knees or placed horizontally on a table or chair.
With one hand, hold a narrow strip of fabric or yarn about 30 cm long under the frame. Using the hook, pull the strip up through the weave of the canvas to form tightly or loosely spaced loops. Generally, the outlines of the design are worked first, then filled in. The background is done last. Depending on the effect desired, the height of the loops can be varied to give the rug a sculptured look.
To your hooks!