When it comes to refreshing our living spaces for the new year, there are those who dive in headfirst, Marie Kondo bible in hand, and there are others who take their time (and will pack up the holiday decor whenever they see fit, thank you very much). But for those of us whose interior decorating aspirations for 2019 land somewhere in between, a cheerful, functional addition to your gallery wall or entryway is the perfect small update to kick off the year—and with these woven wall pockets from Brittni Mehlhoff of Paper & Stitch, you’ll get your dose of hands-on DIY action, too.
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The best part? No previous weaving experience is required, and there’s plenty of room for creativity. Simply go with your own flow to weave a custom pattern for your wall pocket, then tuck a small plant or some faux flowers inside for a light and airy effect. Ready to get started? Follow along as Brittni shows us how it’s done.
At a glance:
Time: 1-4 hours
You will need:
- Latch hooking rug canvas
- Circular plate or bowl for tracing (9 to 12 inches in diameter)
- Pen or marker
- Roving or super chunky yarn in your color (or colors) of choice (a ½ pound of yarn will make 3 to 5 pockets measuring 9 to 12 inches in diameter)
- Poking tool (this could be an awl, a pick, a small wooden dowel, or similar)
- Embroidery floss in a color similar to that of the yarn (up to 2 feet per wall pocket)
- Yarn needle
- Leather cord (6 inches per pocket)
Step 1: Trace shapes onto rug canvas
Start by tracing two identical circles onto two pieces of rug canvas—one for the front of your wall pocket and one for the back. An easy way to do this is to trace the outer edge of a plate or bowl with a marker. Aim for a size slightly larger than desired for your finished pocket. If you’d like to make a shape other than a circle, a rectangle, square, or oval work as well.
Step 2: Snip, snip
Cut out the two shapes with scissors.
Step 3: Trim the top of one shape
Next, cut a small, curved section out of the top of one of the two shapes. This will be the opening for the front part of the pocket.
Step 4: Weave the front piece of canvas
Begin weaving your yarn in and out of the grid holes of the front piece of rug canvas at random. There’s no right or wrong way to do this; you can skip over some grid holes to create longer sections of yarn and then go back to fill in any empty spots later as needed. Use the poking tool to push the yarn through on each end; this will help keep each piece secure. Repeat this process until you’ve created a pattern you like and the rug canvas is completely covered. Tip: You can also use multiple yarn colors and thicknesses for a more unique look.
Step 5: Repeat on the back piece of canvas
Repeat Step 4 on the back piece of rug canvas, covering the entire piece in yarn in a pattern of your choosing.
Step 6: Attach the front and back pieces
Using embroidery floss and a large-eye needle, sew the front and back pieces of rug canvas together to create a pocket. It’s helpful to first tie a double knot to secure the two pieces at one point, then continue sewing along the edges in both directions. Be sure to leave the top of the pocket open. When you’re done, double knot all ends and trim excess floss.
Step 7: Attach a loop to hang
Cut a 6-inch strip of leather cord and guide it through several grid holes near the top of your back piece of rug canvas. Tie the cord ends together to form a tight, sturdy loop; this is how you’ll hang the finished wall pocket.
Tuck faux flowers, plants, craft supplies, or any other odds and ends you’d like to display into your pocket, and hang it from a nail in the spot of your choice. If you plan to use your pockets as planters, consider using air plants, since they’re relatively lightweight and can be removed easily for watering.
Ready to try your hand at more fiber art projects? Get started with a DIY weaving kit:
Project by Brittni Mehlhoff of Paper & Stitch. Photographs by Amelia Tatnall Lawrence.
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