Carpet squares can be removed and replaced when spills happen.

How to Make Rugs With Carpet Squares

by Jan Burch

Make a custom area rug with carpet squares for a fraction of the cost of a ready-made rug. A Mondrian-inspired rug in the foyer, an elegant textural pattern in the living room, or a mix of colors in the family room are just some of the styles within a do-it-yourselfer's reach, thanks to carpet squares available at flooring and home improvement stores. Lay out the squares in your desired pattern and fasten them together with special adhesive patches. Maintenance is easy -- if a spill happens, just remove the square and clean it, or replace with a new square.

Carpet Squares With Included Adhesive Patches

Measure the length and width of your desired area rug. If you want to use the rug under movable furniture, such as chairs at a dining table, allow for this by pulling the chairs out from the table and measuring six to eight inches beyond them.

Plan your rug by drawing the dimensions on graph paper. Use colored pencils to block out your design. Some examples are a checkerboard of alternating colors, stripes, a solid color with a contrasting border, or a mix of related colors in an abstract layout. If you plan to use one color throughout the rug, you can skip this step.

Calculate the number of carpet squares you will need according to your measurements. If you are using more than one color, divide up the area accordingly. Check the product dimensions and manufacturer's instructions for determining the number of squares to purchase. Allow for extra squares in each color you will use.

Remove the furniture and vacuum the floor space where your rug will be. Lay out the carpet squares in the space, using your plan as a guide. Move the squares around until you have a design that pleases you.

Fasten the squares together with adhesive patches, following the product directions. In general, these patches come in 3-inch squares with adhesive on one side. Peel off the protective layer and place the adhesive with the nonsticky side on the floor at a point where the corners of four adjoining squares meet. Match the corners of the squares so they meet on top of the adhesive. Press firmly to adhere. Repeat until all the squares are joined. For extra strength, you can also use an adhesive patch at each of the halfway points where the sides of two adjoining squares meet.

Move your rug into position and replace the furniture.

Carpet Remnants With Adhesive Carpet Tape

Purchase carpet remnants or samples for an even lower-cost custom rug. Mix and match colors and patterns as desired. However, keeping a consistent texture for all of the pieces will provide coherence in the finished look. Samples and remnants will be different sizes.

Spread your carpet remnants out on the floor. Move them around to get the look you desire. Cut some of the remnants into smaller pieces as needed to make your rug fit together in a solid block. This will also allow for a more creative design.

Cut a length of adhesive carpet tape to fit the seam between two adjacent pieces. Peel off the protective layer and place tape on the floor with the adhesive side up. Position the edge of one carpet piece so that it falls halfway onto the length of the tape. Press firmly so the carpet adheres to the tape. Repeat with the adjoining carpet piece, positioning it to meet the edge of the first piece. Repeat until all the blocks are joined. Move the rug into position and replace the furniture.

Items you will need

  • Measuring tape
  • Graph paper
  • Ruler
  • Colored pencils (optional)
  • Adhesive patches for carpet tiles
  • Carpet remnants (optional)
  • Carpet blade or heavy scissors
  • Adhesive carpet tape (optional)

About the Author

Jan Burch has written about home, garden, wellness and other topics since 1992. Her articles have appeared in ByLine, Living Natural and New Mexico Woman. Based in Albuquerque, Burch is a Feng Shui consultant and Jin Shin Jyutsu practitioner. A life-long crafting enthusiast, she holds a master's degree from the University of California.

Photo Credits

  • Thomas Northcut/Digital Vision/Getty Images