Do you know what tufting is? Tufting is a textile technique that consists of inserting yarn into a fabric base creating loops or cut tassels, without knots. To do this, we use a tufting gun that quickly goes through the fabric canvas with each ‘shot’. Since the pandemic, tufting has risen in popularity like wildfire. In fact, if you check out the #tufting hashtag you’ll discover endless tufted rugs and weavings made by Tufters on Instagram or TufTokers on TikTok. Without a doubt, rugs and weavings are the star tufting project. There’s nothing more addictive than seeing how a large piece of fabric is completely covered with yarn much more quickly than with the modest punch needle.
Yarns for tufting
Medium weight, wide color range, resistant composition, soft touch, affordable price… according to tufters, these are some of the characteristics that yarns for tufting should meet. What a coincidence! At Katia we have yarns like Katia Alaska and Katia Planet which meet all these requirements. Take note, beginner!
Katia Alaska and Katia Planet
If you want to start tufting, we recommend using 100% acrylic yarns like Katia Alaska and Katia Planet. Both synthetic yarns are available as 100-gram balls in 50 different colors. They are long-lasting, flexible, soft yarns with the best price to learn how to tuft weavings and rugs.
Materials to start tufting
As well as balls of yarn like Katia Alaska and Katia Planet, you need this list of basic tools and materials to start tufting:
- A tufting gun, punch needle gun, or rug machine
- Wooden frame
- Fabric or canvas
- Fabric marker or pencil
- Glue, textile glue, or silicone gun
- Scissors, shearing machine, and hoover
Step-by-step instructions to tuft your ideas
Get ready to ‘shoot’ yarn with tufting! Without a doubt, the most popular textile technique on Instagram and TikTok after the pandemic. You’ll find hundreds of images and videos on social media to create colorful rugs and weavings. Nevertheless, here are some step-by-step instructions to learn how to tuft like a pro:
- Decide on a design and draw it on the fabric (before or after attaching it to the wooden frame).
- Make sure to stretch out the fabric well on the wooden frame, it should be taught. IMPORTANT: Make sure to secure the fabric to the frame with well-placed staples or nails.
- Load your tufting gun with yarn and start to ‘shoot’ at the fabric. First, follow the lines of the drawing and then, fill in with the colorful yarns you’ve chosen.
- Once you’ve completed the design: cut the excess yarns, apply the textile glue and add a piece of canvas (optional) to cover the back of the design.
- Remove the fabric from the wooden frame to cut the fabric following the shape of the design. Do so leaving a few centimeters from the edge of the design.
- Make small cuts perpendicular to the edge and parallel to each other —separated a few centimeters— on the remaining fabric. This way, you can easily glue it to the back with a silicone gun. Pro Tip: embellish the edge of the back by adding fabric tape around the edge with silicone or glue.
- Now, turn it around: use scissors to cut out the yarn around the edge and achieve a well-defined edge. Using a shearing machine, even out the length of the strands and achieve a soft and compact surface.
- Lastly, turn on the hoover to remove all fluff and excess yarn. This tufting idea is a success!
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Alternatives to create rugs WITHOUT a tufting gun
You can make yarn rugs with affordable tools that are easy to use like punch needles, locker hooking and latch hooking. Although the process is much slower than with a tufting gun, these are relaxing textile techniques suitable for all audiences. If you want to make a rug for your home, without making a big investment, take note of our recommendations. Here are some simple ideas that you can make at home with a latch hooking needle and our best yarns for rugs:
100% synthetic acrylic yarns
Knotted rug video tutorial made with leftover yarn