I learned something about rag rugs. They take a long time to do.
And smaller is not better.
I cut all of the first strips about a half inch wide. I was surprised at how long the strip-cutting took, too, as I patiently worked beside the fire pit cutting long continuous strips out of my rag bag. The braiding was the fastest step of all, and very satisfying- somehow even the ugliest fabric looks really cool braided against complementary colours. However, all the work I did to make the strips long and continuous was pointless, because long strips just tangle and fray the more they’re handled. Short workable strips worked in are the way to go. And then, the sewing. That’s where I really learned to start wide at the very beginning. The tinier the little braids are, the more sewing there is. I hand-whipped the braid all together in a back and forth rectangle. The end result is beautiful, but small and not very thick. It would actually make a really pretty placemat. My second rug was more respectable, but it could be thicker again.
Tips for rag rugs- start large. A good two or three inches wide for the rag strips at the beginning would make a respectable gauge of braid. Always keep one of the strands under two feet long during braiding. And whip tight. The braids have lots of flex in them and stretch out to shape nicely.