Getting Ziggy With It

Note: Originally posted on my old blog on 10.5.2011

So my project has been inspired by the Chevron rug painting trend that has become pretty popular.  Basically you take a flatwoven rug, stencil or measure and tape your zig-zag chevron lines, and paint!

I already had a $5 rug from Ross that I bought 5 months ago for the entryway.  It’s made of synthetic fibers, and most of the blogs I’ve read about painting rugs have used cotton or natural fiber rugs.  I think cotton/natural fiber rugs take the paint better, whereas synthetic rugs tend to absorb a lot of paint and you have to do multiple layers.  Anywho, I needed to practice painting a rug before I get started on another Chevron rug project with some nice natural-fiber rugs from target.  So while I’m pretty content with the outcome, I hope it will look better on a flatwoven cotton/natural fiber rug!

Finished Chevron Rug

You might want to consider using a $70 4’4″ x 6’5″ EGEBY rug from Ikea.  You can find this rug here.

EGEBY Rug, flatwoven, natural Length: 6 ' 5 " Width: 4 ' 4 "  Length: 195 cm Width: 133 cm
EGBY Rug – Ikea

ERSLEV from Ikea is even cheaper and larger at 5’11’ x 8’2′ and $60.  I’ve seen Chevron painted on both!

ERSLEV Rug, flatwoven, white Length: 8 ' 2 " Width: 5 ' 11 "  Length: 250 cm Width: 180 cm
ERSLEV Rug – Ikea


What you need (my quantities are for a 3′ x 5′ synthetic rug, so adjust as needed):

1) Flatwoven natural fiber/cotton rug (recommended)

2) Quart of base color (lighter colors look good!). Mine was Olympic “Ash Mist”.

3) Quart (or two sample size) of line color.  Mine was Valspar’s “Frosty”.

4) A cardstock template.

5) Painter’s tape.

6) Roller, paint tray, foam brush, large brush.

7)  You could also use a fabric medium to mix with your paint which you can get at craft stores (some instructions use it, some don’t)

8) Patience About 4-6 hours.

So like I said, the rug I bought was $5 and isn’t great quality, but I needed to practice.  It was originally a beige color, but I wanted it to be more white, so I used Olympic’s “Ash Mist”.  I got a sample size, which barely covered a quarter of the rug!  This thing absorbed paint like crazy!  I ended up having to by a $9 quart of Ash Mist to cover the entire thing and used a foam roller.  Also, if you’re using a rug with a boarder, don’t forget to tape off the edges!

Starting the base paint

So I really didn’t have a great method for my madness, except I created a template, which I didn’t take a picture of, but you can see it in the far left of the picture below.  It’s cardstock that I glued together, end to end to get a zig-zag shape.  You need 2 to measure the next place you need to tape.  Because I suck at math and geometric measurements frustrate me, I guestimated the size, luckily for this 3′ x 5′ rug, my template (which was a piece of 8.5″ x 11″ of cardstock split down the middle) worked.  I used my template to tape off one line at a time.  Remember you always need to tape around the outside of your template when it is positioned one line up, or else your spacing will be off.  OR you could always follow these directions on how to make perfect chevron stripes I should have found earlier just found and roll the entire thing at once!

After letting the white paint dry, I used a foam brush to get the edges, and a paint brush for the insides of my lines.  The color is “Frosty” by Valspar.

Put the tape down where the edges of your template fall

I had to get another sample jar to finish the zig-zag lines.  I should have just gotten a quart of “Frosty” and would have some left for another project!  Oh, and for some reason the second sample jar color came out a little lighter.  Oh well. I’m hoping that it might darken when it dries completely.

Finished product again!

So what I learned is it is a pain to paint this synthetic fiber type of rug.  It’s not really flatwoven as there are little “hooks” of fibers, so getting in all the little nooks took a long time.  It still looks a little “distressed” because it was absolutely impossible to get even, full coverage, but you know what…some people have sanded down their rugs to give them the distressed look mine has, so I don’t mind it!  I’ll probably also try that “tape method for perfect chevron stripes” next time too.

I’m linking the following blogs that may provide better directions than mine some inspiration!  You can also try out other neat painted designs, not just the Chevron stripe! Or use outdoor paint for an outdoor rug!

Haley Anderson Photography – Chevron Rug Inspiration #1

The House of Smiths – Chevron Rug Inspiration #2

Almost 40 Year Old Intern – Rug Inspiration #3

Curbly – Rug Inspiration #4

Happy Crafting!


2 thoughts on “Getting Ziggy With It

    1. Thanks! And thanks for the comment! It was definitely a lot of trial and error, but so happy with it and it’s my favorite thing in my room right now! Good luck when you try yours 🙂

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