Non-Skid Rug Backing: 11 Easy Options for your Handmade Rug
Handmade rugs are beautiful and practical, but they have one potential flaw: slippage. It’s not only frustrating to slip and slide on a rug, it’s dangerous—one misstep and you can fall. Handmade rugs, whether they’re crocheted, knitted, or woven, need a non-skid rug backing.
Here are some easy ways to make your rug stick to the floor using products from hardware stores, your crafting stash, and your sewing basket. Not all of them are ideal for every situation. Some products are easier to apply but need periodic reapplication. Other options will show under lacy stitches or weave structures, so they’ll work better for “unholey” fabrics. Be sure to compare the options below to see what will work best for your project.
11 Non-Skid Rug Backing Options for Knit, Crocheted and Woven Rugs
Note: Follow the directions on the product for safety information and application instructions.
1. Nonslip Rug Pad and Double-Sided Tape
Cut a nonslip rug pad 1″ smaller than your rug on all sides. Adhere double-sided tape to the back of the rug, then press the rug onto the rug pad. This option allows you to position the rug somewhere else in your house. You can also remove the pad to wash the rug. (You can reuse the pad, though you’ll need to apply fresh tape.) The pad will be visible if used under a lacy rug.
2. Anti-Slip Spray
Simply spray the back of your rug with the product, which you can find in the spray paint section of hardware stores. This option is great for lacier fabrics. The spray may require multiple applications, as it can soak into the rug. It may also need reapplication after you wash your rug.
3. Shelf Liner and Adhesive-Backed Velcro
Cut a piece of non-adhesive shelf liner 1″ smaller than your rug on all sides. Cut the hook side of the Velcro into strips and stick them to the shelf liner. Lay your rug on top of the shelf liner—you won’t need the fuzzy Velcro side because the hooks will latch onto your yarn. Again, this option is not great for lacy rugs because the shelf liner will show through. Shelf liner can also discolor your floor (which might not be a problem if you are trying to cover up a nasty looking floor).
4. Rug Fasteners
These handy doodads are also called rug anchors or rug grippers. Depending on the brand you use, sometimes you stick the fasteners onto the rug and sometimes you stick them onto the floor. Then press the rug onto the floor, and it sticks like magic. Some brands can be removed for repositioning or laundering the rug. All of them come in small sizes, so you may be able to use them on lacy fabrics.
5. Puff Paint
Apply beads of puff paint to the back of your project, making sure the paint firmly grips the fabric. This option works well on lacy and solid rugs. You may have to reapply puff paint after laundering the rug.
6. Silicone Sealant
Apply long lines of silicone to the back of the rug, running the lines around the rug’s edges and all around the inside. For best results, flatten the lines so the silicone grips the fabric. Silicone is not water soluble, so can be a bit of a pain to clean off application tools, but it shouldn’t wash off the rug. You’ll find many sealant options in hardware stores.
7. Plastic Dip
Spray or brush this product on the back of your rug. You may only see it in black at your hardware or automotive supply store, but you can find it in clear or white on Amazon.
8. Fiber-Lok Non-Skid Backing
Paint this on the back of your rug. It is machine-washable and -dryable and cleans up with soap and water.
9. Acrylic Latex Caulk
Apply long lines of caulk to the back of the rug, running the lines around the rug’s edges and all around the inside. Then dab your finger in water and press caulk to rug so that it grips the fabric.
10. Carpet Tape
Adhere double-sided tape to your rug, then remove the coating on the second side and press to the floor. Don’t use it to tape rugs onto carpeting—it’s for hard surfaces only. Because it’s meant to be a permanent solution, it will leave a sticky residue on the floor if you remove the rug to reposition or launder it.
11. Rug Tape
Adhere tape to your rug and press to floor. Unlike carpet tape, rug tape sticks to the floor through a rubber backing rather than an adhesive, so it works great for almost any surface.
Non-Skid Rug Backing in Action
We tried a couple of these non-slip options on some recent crochet projects.
Geometric Throw Rug
This rectangular rug by Annie Modesitt was made with Willow Yarn Feather, a blend of linen and cotton. Annie used a brush to apply a thin coat of Fiber-Lok Non-Skid Backing. The coating was thin, which allows the rug to be rolled or folded without creating weird cracks or creases. The product does have a slight odor, so you may want to let your rug sit outside to air out.
Chunky Doily Rug
Pamela Wynne created a beautiful star-shaped rug for Crochet at Home. Susanna Tobias, our crochet project editor, made the project shown here. She modified the pattern into a half circle so she could place her rug at a door or at the kitchen sink. I decided to back the rug with acrylic latex caulking, which seemed like the most invisible option for the lacy motif.
Have you applied non-skid rug backings to your crocheted, knitted or woven rugs? I’d love to know what’s worked and what hasn’t. Leave me a comment.