Before I start talking about stitching the rug, I have 2 things to go over. The first is the background for the rug. You’ve seen the inspiration for this rug, and it has several different colors for the background and there is no white in the rug. This Mosaic Rug is my adaptation and though it has many of the motifs that are in the original rug, they may not look exactly the same. The colors will be a little different as well. The background for the 3 smaller bands (that will run from left to right) will be a beige color called Toast (from Brown Paper Packages). The background for the 2 much larger bands will be Gazelle and Tiger, two shades of orange/rust. The outer border and separator for the bands will be Coffee Bean, a dark brown.
When I created the motifs on the computer I used some of the colors from the rug to show you how they would look. These colors will vary quite a bit from the layout photo you saw. Because of the color of the background around the motifs, especially the larger ones, I’ll be using lighter or darker colors for the motifs so they will stand out. These decisions are always made on the fly, so to speak. I don’t plan them out in advance though I have a general idea for a lot of them.
The second thing is the size of the rug. Because the rug will be about 24″ X 36″ I’ve cut my canvas to be 28″ X 40.” This gives me 2 inches of blank canvas all the way around the edge. My rug frame can only hold pieces up to 36″ wide and I don’t have any 36″ stretcher bars. So the canvas is mounted on 28″ and 34″ bars and I’ve folded over 6″ at the right side. When I reach the halfway point in stitching the rug, I’ll remove all the tacks and move it over to I can work on the second half. I don’t really want to fold the stitched section over so I’ll have to figure out how to handle that when I get to that point. So the first photo of this project shows you the huge expanse of white canvas that I am dealing with.
Though this much blank canvas might scare some people away, I love this part. I know what I’m going to do and now I get to see it come slowly to life. The paper folded out of the way on the left is the layout of the rug. It’s clipped to the canvas and will move around as I work through the rug. To start with, I’ll be stitching the narrow band along the bottom until it is the same width as one of the medium sized motifs, about 7-8 inches. Then I will continue up the rug, stitching the five bands until all of them are about 8 inches across. Then I’ll come back to the bottom and start the next set of motifs, though I will only do about half of each of the very large motifs and then have to move the canvas over. That will be many weeks from now. This rug is the largest I’ve created so far and I’m thinking 3 months to complete. We’ll see.
Now it’s time to get stitching. I started by working on the outer border first, as usual. This border will be two Mosaic stitches wide, done in the Coffee Bean color . I’ll also put two Mosaic stitches in Coffee Bean between each of the motif bands as well. Next I stitched 4 rows of Mosaic using Toast as background.
With some of the background completed, I could add the first motif. The “sticks” will always be done in Espresso but the little tops will change color each time I stitch them. I’ll fill in the background around this motif and then add 5 rows of Mosaic stitches before starting the next motif.
I know it isn’t much, but it’s a start and I know I’ll get a little faster as I work on this. This rug is going to be so neat and tidy with it thousands of little Mosaic squares! And to give you an idea of the size of this project, it will be 864 square inches. I have completed 9 square inches. Guess I need to get back to work!