This post was originally published on DIY Network’s blog Made + Remade in April 2015.
My ever-evolving home recently received a kitchen “upgrade” that took into account a much needed “downsize.” The new, smaller table in our eat-in nook is a 30″ round model with a “wooden” melamine top and steel base, a salvage find that served its original purpose as a table in a local school.
And never mind that uncovered outlet in the background; as always, other projects are always happening behind the scenes.
The table that used to live in this part of our kitchen was too big for the space – it was a giant, heavy square dark wood piece that had been in the dining room of our old house. When chairs surrounded that big table, they partially blocked the entry/edit to our back enclosed porch area, and moreover, the bigger surface area ended up being a catch-all for jackets and mail, occupying the space we would much rather let the kids use for morning waffles while we pack school lunches. A smaller table, a big win. Even when paired with some of our extra chairs, this smaller table leaves a lot of room for us to move about the space.
Part of my envisioned upgrades involved adding a small area rug too, something low-maintenance in this high traffic area, but pleasant underfoot for when we’re sitting at the table. The rug, a 5×7 indoor-outdoor model that cost ~$15 was a great starting point for this space, and coordinated simply with the cabinets that I painted last fall.
I wasn’t ready to leave it 5×7 for a few reasons:
- It’s was a little too big for the space. One corner was in the way of the porch door opening.
- That corner, and its surrounding 1′ square of carpet was likely to get heavily ragged on from foot traffic. I prefer to be able to sweep the dirt and dog fur that gathers at that entryway, so I wanted to be able to keep the foot-traffic-path reasonably clear.
- Round table paired with circular-inspired rug? Love it.
Making your own half-circle rug to fit a similar space isn’t hard – keep on reading below to get the full tutorial!
- Time: 30 minutes
- Cost: $20
Flip the rug upside down. Measure the length of the rug, and use marker to “mark” the center on both edges. If your carpet is also 5×7, note that the centerpoint is 42″.
Use the tape measure to connect the two marks along the width of the carpet; mark the 42″ spot along this axis. This is the step that will guarantee your circle to be symmetrical, not oval.
Now’s the time to make a handy protractor-like tool. You’ll take a string, and attach it to the center mark along the long edge. A few tips: A safety pin works well. A post earring with a tight clip on the back. A push pin, as long as it doesn’t pull free easily when you tug on it. Tie a string to whatever you use, but make sure the string isn’t “stretchy” like yarn. You want to work with a pin that will stay in place, and a string that will remain taut so that your measurements are consistent.
You already marked the 42″ point in the center of the rug; that’s your starting point. Extend the string to that point, and mark the string itself, so you know where 42″ on the string is.
Rotate the string in a circular motion along the backside of the carpet, marking every few inches. There’s your guide line!
Use very heavy duty cutting shears, and cut carefully along your dotted line. Not your nice fabric-cutting scissors, go for something with some muscle. I bought the heavy-duty Husky Titanium Scissors a few years ago, and they’ve come in handy more than you know.
Voila! Upside down cut rug.
The inexpensive indoor-outdoor carpet surprised me in that there wasn’t fraying along the edge of the cut; repositioned in our kitchen, it’s the perfect scale for our small seating area, and leaves plenty of open walkway for traffic coming in and out of the house.