Thursday, October 29, 2009

Penny saved….is a penny stitched?

For those of you who may be wondering- what exactly is a penny rug….?  Well first off, they aren’t rugs…more like table toppers.

Let me give you a little history lesson….well way back when my great-grandma was a girl….around the early 1800s, women would use scraps of wool or wool felt from old clothing and hats to create designs for mats or rugs. They would make circles using coins as a template. (Hence the name- ‘penny’rugs…) Each piece was then stitched using the blanket stitch fashion. Sometimes, the mats or rugs were backed with old burlap bags or feed sacks or wool. And to make the piece lie flat, a penny was sometimes stitched under one of the circles to weigh it down (that is if you were rich enough to do this!) Imagine finding an old penny rug with coins sewn in….be worth a pretty penny! :o)  Nineteenth century women were very creative and not wasteful.

So next time I am in a Thrift store looking for an old winter coat to turn into the perfect penny rug I will think of my great grandma working on her own penny rug using bits and pieces of whatever was available.  Maybe even the coat off my own grandmother’s back…Poor grandma….

This is a picture of a penny rug made out of my poor grandma’s coat….taken off Wikipedia. (no copy right rules apply as it was released for publications)

image Now don’t you feel a lot smarter….?  Don’t you want to start ripping up that old winter coat of yours?  That’s what I did…..DCP_1194 DCP_1190

So here we are 200 years later….and my old blazers and coats have never looked so good….Thanks great-grandma….for passing on the penny rug gene!….

Yahooo- Give-Away Spotted!!  And it is a humdinger!!  Canton Village Quilting is giving away a ton of stuff for five LUCKY winners!!  When I signed up there were almost 450 entries so the chances of getting H1N1 is greater than winning ….but some one’s got to get it …right?…the prizes that is, not H1N1!  (and I hope you don’t get it….the H1N1, that is!)  Sheesh….good luck…!

Have a thrifting Thursday and Happy Quilting!


  1. And we think that we are the ones with talent. The workmanship is beautiful on your penny rugs. Isn't it nice to look back and remember what our ancestors taught us. Good luck with your entry at Canton Village Quilting.

  2. They look fantastic Paulette..
    You have inspired me...I have an old royal blue wool jacket that I nearly gave to the Good Sammy shop many times, but just could not part with it!

    It now will have a new purpose!
    Thank you Julia ♥

  3. Those a just beautiful!!!!! Wool never looked so good!

  4. Wowser! Love!!! Especially Santa - he is awesome!

  5. Thanks for the lesson, it is always great to learn something new and the penny rugs look lovely.