Do it yourself rug binding

Written by alex burke
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Do it yourself rug binding
Bind carpet remnants to prevent them from fraying. (arts martiaux 2 image by Nathalie P from

Rug binding use to mean stitching binding tape along the edges of a rug by means of a sewing machine. Smaller, lightweight rugs might require hand-stitching. A new product that combines rug binding and a sticky tape allows do-it-yourself types to apply binding quickly, without sewing. An all-in-one binding product, the sticky tape attaches to the underside of the rug while the attached piping pushes against the rug edge. A bead of hot glue placed between the rug edge and the piping permanently attaches the piping to the rug.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Instant rug binding tape
  • Glue gun
  • Scissors
  • Carpet knife or utility knife
  • Cloth or leather work gloves
  • Cooking sheet or tray (optional)

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  1. 1

    Trim each side of the rug to obtain a clean edge, using a carpet or utility knife. Cut away any loose threads using scissors.

  2. 2

    Locate the free end of the roll of instant rug binding tape, and cut a clean, straight edge through the piping and the tape using scissors.

  3. 3

    Begin the binding process at the middle of one side, not the corner of the carpet.

  4. 4

    Remove several feet of protective covering from the sticky tape attached to the binding. Lift the carpet edge and place the exposed tape under the rug while butting the binding against the edge of the carpet. Press down on the carpet edge from above to adhere the tape to the bottom of the carpet.

  5. 5

    Continue this process down the side of the carpet. Stop when you reach the corner. It is time to turn the corner with the piping and tape, but first the tape needs to be cut in order to round the corner in a neat and tidy manner. At this point the binding and its attached tape should extend past the corner. The exposed edge of the carpet (the edge without binding) can be used as a guide to make a cut in the sticky tape only: place the scissors along the exposed carpet edge and snip the tape just up to the piping (do not cut the piping).

  6. 6

    Lift the corner of the rug up from the floor slightly and turn the unattached binding around the corner and along the unfinished edge of the rug (the pointed corner of the rug will be covered by the curve of the piping). Press the piping against the rug and attach the sticky tape to the underside of the rug. Lay the rug back on the floor and continue attaching the binding and sticky tape around the edges and corners of the rug until all sides have been covered.

  7. 7

    Once the binding process has landed back at the starting point, the piping and tape should still be attached to the roll of binding product. Pretend that the piping and tape will continue to wrap around the rug and past the starting point. Lift the rug slightly and tug the loose piping under the starting point and toward the next corner. The original starting point now sits on top of the loose piping and the flat end of the starting point is exposed. Use that exposed end as the marker for where to cut the piping and tape away from the roll. Lift the rug up slightly to snip both the piping and the sticky tape with the scissors. The two end points of piping should now butt against each other. Secure the two ends of binding together by applying a drop of hot glue between them and pressing them together.

  8. 8

    Secure the piping to the rug by using a bead of hot glue along the seam between the piping and the rug edge. Draw the glue six inches along the seam in a small stream. Stop, lay the glue gun aside, press the seam together and hold it in place for a few moments so that the glue sets. Continue the same process until the piping is completely bound to the rug along all sides.

Tips and warnings

  • Piping forms a curved edge at each corner. Ninety-degree corners are not possible with this product.
  • Place tools in a cooking sheet or other tray to keep them together, within reach and easy to drag along the length of the rug while working. Place the glue gun in this tray when not in use to prevent glue from getting on the rug or floor.
  • Note that the binding product is adjustable until the hot glue is applied, and will pull easily away from the back of the rug as needed.
  • Instant binding tape comes in regular, serge or rope styles.

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