the best tools and workshops for carpet making

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Singapore has a new favorite hobby: tufting.

It is much less violent than it seems. Tufting is basically a type of textile craft – much like embroidery or knitting – that is traditionally used for making rugs. Hand tufting has its roots in Persia (or present-day Iran), where the world’s oldest carpet was found. In ancient Persia, the art of tufting varied between villages, each of which developed their own weaving patterns and used different colors of threads and knots for their carpet designs.

Centuries later, the craft would arrive in the United States through the first settlers who wanted to make warm clothing. The world’s first mechanized tufting machine was reportedly developed in Georgia in the 1930s, making chenille rugs and wall-to-wall carpets very popular. Hand tufting saw a revival in the 1950s, before declining with the importance of crochet hook, another way of making rugs, in the 1970s.

(Photo credit: @ chronic_the_hedgeh0g / Instagram)

Tufting seemed doomed to be forgotten in the 21st century, but thanks to artistic (and bored) users on TikTok and Instagram, the craft has made a comeback – at least mechanically. Now everyone wants to take a tufting gun and punch the yarn through a fabric canvas to create a rug that looks like their favorite Marvel / Disney / Studio Ghibli character. It even sparked a craft frenzy among the couples – what could be more romantic than a session in a carpet making workshop?

Whether you’re planning to DIY at home or attending the aforementioned workshop for your next date, read on for our guide to tufting in Singapore and find out all you need to know.

Home tufting

(Photo credit:
@valeriegobeilart / Instagram)

Yes, you can do home tufting without a partner. It will be easier to make the rug or tapestry of your interior design dreams if you have a lot of space to work. You will also need to get a larger frame that can stretch your fabric. If you are a total beginner, however, we recommend that you start small. Here’s what you’ll need:

Tufting Tools

A tufting gun: it takes all the work of traditional tufting, so it’s usually very expensive.

A frame to tuft: it is made of wood, and its size varies according to your needs.

Wire: If this is your first time, don’t look for the fanciest threads yet. You can reuse any yarn you may have left over from your previous craft projects. Wool yarn is the standard for making rugs, but cotton yarn is an affordable and environmentally friendly alternative. Get the most delicate acrylic yarn for purely aesthetic projects.

Primary support fabric: If the tufting gun is your brush and the wire is your paint, this piece of fabric is your canvas. Obtain a sturdy cotton-polyester blend fabric that matches the dimensions of your frame.

Carpet handles: They are used to securely attach the support fabric to the frame. Use two rows to make sure the fabric is taut on the frame.

Secondary support fabric: This optional piece of fabric can be glued to the back of your tufted masterpiece to enhance its stability and resilience.

Glue: Usually in the form of liquid latex, this glue is applied to the back of your finished tufted items to prevent them from coming undone. Roberts 3095 Carpet Adhesive is a highly recommended choice.

Where to shop

Tuftinggun.com, run by American textile artist Tim Eads, is the go-to resource for dedicated tufters. You can also find what you need, such as a carpet tufting starter pack, on Etsy. To avoid high shipping costs, purchase the same tools through @tuftingsg on Carousell or With Autumn, both based in Singapore.

Tufting tutorials

Besides YouTube, you can find the answers to all your questions on the Tufting Reddit page, or swap tips with other creators on the Tuft the World forum. TikTok and Instagram are also great sources of inspiration; follow hashtags like #rugmaking, #tufttinggun, #tufttheworld, and #rugtiktok.

Tufting workshops

If you are not interested in tufting as a solitary activity, you can undertake it as a social activity in one of the workshops available in Singapore. We list them below.

Club Touffe

@7mseji

Who needs gym when tufting a rug for 4.5 hours is a workout itself 🏋🏽‍♀️ @flabby_fab

♬ 술버릇 – G.Soul

What better place to start your journey than at the premier tufting studio in Singapore? Housed in a two-story boutique along Circular Road, Tuft Club is where you’ll find workshops for tufting a rug or creating your own plush mirror frame, both measuring up to two feet by two feet. You will be guided by friendly staff members to operate a tufting gun and experiment with different techniques during a 4.5 hour session (S $ 195 each). Tuft Club will also provide a projector that will allow you to trace the desired pattern onto your fabric.

with autumn

(Photo credit: With Automne)

You may know With Autumn for its various craft workshops (we have already recommended its Shibori workshop). The textile studio also hosts two tufting workshops: Tuft Your Own Rug Workshop (S $ 199) or Tufting 101 (S $ 389). The first is a 4 hour affair where you and three other participants can create a custom rug (up to 70cm by 70cm).

Tufting 101 is more intense: it takes place over two days, where you will learn everything from selecting the right backing fabric and yarn, to stretching your backing fabric, as well as finishing techniques to transform. your tufted work as a decor for your floor or walls. Supplies will be provided, but you’ll also get tips on where to buy them in the future so you can continue your crafting journey independently. Private workshops are also available.

Header photo credit: @zenocruz_



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