Fabricated Rug Cheatsheet

Custom fabricated rugs can solve a lot of design problems. Many designers may not be aware of all their options using them. Here are some ways custom rugs may be able to help you.

First a few definitions.

For purposes of this blog, a carpet reaches wall to wall. A rug does not.

The custom rugs that we are talking about today are rugs fabricated from broadloom carpet. The rug is born a carpet, but is tailored to fit a space like an area rug and suitably bound at the edges. More on that later.

What Good Are They?

Let me count the ways.

The most common custom rugs are stair runners. Most stair funners are cut to fit each tread and riser because each staircase is so unique. Hence most  stair runners must be fabricated.

Fabricated stair runner; waterfall style, wide binding.
Waterfall style where carpet is draped over the nosing of the
tread rather than upholstered around the nosing. This makes for smoother pattern transition from riser to

Custom rugs are great for defining the living space of an odd shaped room. The margin between the edge of the rug and the wall can give a snap and a sense of purpose to the design.

Large fabricated rug with wide hand sewn leather binding
The rug can define a large space. The leather binding here is subtly branded (with a branding iron) with the ranch's brand.

Rugs are great for zoning large open concept spaces.

Small fabricatred rug defines dining area
A small dining area within a larger space.

Furthermore, custom rugs can sculpt a room. It can gather in a large room to a more intimate living space by increasing the margin, the distance between the edge of the rug and the wall.

Formatted sisal rug with hand-knotted rug on top
A rug fabricated in sisal defines the outer boundaries assisted by a hand-knotted area rug
inside the conversation area. In fact there are two margins, one of wood and the other of sisal.

It can expand a small room by decreasing the margin, creating an illusion of more space.

A custom rug can display something personal, like a ranch’s brand burned into a leather binding above. Or something whimsical like the piece below.

Custom fabricated rug on the floor of the shop
Specially designed fabricated rug on the floor of our shop.

The cut edges of rugs are sewn up in basically three ways.

Hand applied binding is time-consuming and expensive, but is the most customizeable.

Rug with hand binding
Hand Bound Sisal Rug

Machine binding is the least expensive and is very durable.

Rug with machine binding
Machine Binding

Serging is the most decorative.

Rug with serged edges
Serged edge

Obviously a rug has the ability to share the spotlight with a beautiful wood floor. A simple rectilinear rug can can do that much less expensively than a hand-knotted wool rug.

Simple rectilinear custom rugs have a couple more huge advantages. We can cut them to any size you want so designers have more control in the overall layout of the room. On the other hand most area rugs are manufactured in standard sizes like 9x12s.

You can get custom rugs much faster than hand-made area rugs. If we don’t have the rug in stock, a hand-knotted rug can take up to a year to make. We can fabricate a broadloom rug in a manner of weeks.

And simple rectilinear fabricated rugs are much less expensive than hand-knotted. However for obvious reasons, rugs that go in and out of nooks, have fancy curves or go up stairs can be pricey because of the added, specialized labor costs.

What’s Involved?



Measure Twice

A skillful custom rug maker is insanely careful about measuring. He will insist that the designer be on hand to approve the future placement of the rug and the margins.

Bob Ford Jr. measure for a custom rug
Master Installer Bob Ford Jr. measures a tradtional room with lots of corners.

From his measurements he will calculate the amount of carpet to order. There is no room for errors in this process.





What Can Become a Custom Rug?

Anything that comes on a roll.

One popular material for custom carpets is natural fiber such as sisal. It’s durable and inexpensive. It can give a room a nice definition as well as a pleasing textural statement.

Sisal custom rug layered under traditional rug.
This popular configuration calls for a fabricated sisal cut to fit around the hearth rug layered
under a traditional rug.









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