|Rope Made from Rags|
|The Rag Box|
1. Starting out.
|Knot the Ends|
If you have fabrics that are not colorfast, you might consider prewashing them on a gentle cycle and air or line drying them before cutting into strips.
2. Braid.If you are unfamiliar with braiding, check out the diagram on this website for more information. It often helps to have something anchoring the other end of the braid, whether you use a safety pin and pin it to a couch, your jeans, or a rug, have a patient friend hold it, or hold the braid underneath your foot. Start braiding away and stop when you're within a couple inches of the end of your shortest strip. If you are making a rag rug, you will want the braid to be loose. If you are making Rapunzel hair or a rope, you can braid tightly.
If you need to take a break from braiding, a safety pin will hold the braids in place. Or you can use a bobby pin while adding more, which is faster to move and remove.
3. Add More Strips as Needed.This clever trick (from Moda) saved me so much time! When you get to the end of your strip, lay another strip over the end, overlapping by about 1 1/2 inches.
|Overlap the Ends|
|Fold both of them over and cut a small slit through both.|
Take the end of your new strip, fold it under, and pull it up through the slit you've just made.
Et Voila! Keep braiding like normal.
Here it is again with some different fabric:
|Overlap the strips.|
|Fold them together.|
|Cut a small slit through both layers of fabric.|
|Pull the end of the new strip up through the slit.|
|Keep pulling gently.|
As I started cutting more strips, I pre-cut the slits in each as well. I'm not sure which way is faster, but it was nice not having to reach for the scissors every few moments.
4. Keep adding until the desired length is reached.When the rope is as long as you need/want it, you can sew the ends or knot them. If you are working on something like a rag rug, I recommend just using a safety pin to hold the ends in place in case you wish to add more. I thought I had enough rope made for a rag rug I made for my sister, but I had nowhere near enough and had to add more on.
My two girls love to play like the fabric ropes are Rapunzel hair, hence the name. Really the only thing it has in common with Rapunzel's hair is the length and the braiding, but that doesn't stop their imaginations. I suppose if you used fabric in a hair-like color, it would look more like hair. Still, they love their ropes.