Some time ago, it occurred to me that it would be very nice to have a floor rug. After searching the internet and finding a brilliantly simple way of making a floor rug by crocheting strips of fabric, I concluded I could have fun and save money by making a rug to my own taste rather than purchasing one.

I went to a thrift store and bought a quantity of scrap fabric for a low price; bought the biggest crochet hook that the big box store offered; and tried crocheting a small strip of fabric into a square, just to make sure the whole plan was feasible. Some months after the plan (named “the Rag Rug Project”) was conceived, I cut my scraps of fabric into strips, arranged them by color, pinned the ends together while carefully mixing the colors, and hand-sewed the ends together until I had one long piece of multicolored fabric “yarn” to crochet.

Only it wouldn’t crochet.

The “yarn” was simply too thick. I had forgotten about the small sample I had tried before, and cut the strips of fabric far too wide. Trying to crochet with the “yarn” made the back of my hand cramp, and even if I had stronger hands, the resulting rug would have been far too bumpy to be practical. I had to give up on the Rag Rug Project and roll up the “yarn.” Just the act of rolling the failed “yarn” into a ball took two hours, or about the time it takes to watch the new Karate Kid.

The yarn-ball, standing 1 foot tall, weighing 12 pounds, and fit for a tiger cub, now decorates a corner of our living room as a piece of abstract art. It also serves as a very uncomfortable stool in a pinch.