Tufting, the ancient technique of textile weaving, is this summer’s latest viral TikTok trend that’ll see you wanting to run to your local DIY store to pick up supplies in an instant. If you’re yet to stumble across the trend, we guarantee you’ll be hooked within ten seconds of seeing the ASMR magic happen before your eyes.
So our question to you is, how did you spend your precious time in lockdown? If you were busy baking banana bread, feeding your sourdough starter or binge watching endless Netflix shows, you were doing it wrong clearly, because there’s a new trend that’s taken over TikTok and it’s far more impressive than you learning how to pronounce one to ten in Korean (although, this is still very cool).
Enter tufting, the textile craze that’s taken over your social feed. We’re all aware that crafting has had a huge surge over the last 18 months, what with everyone stuck inside for months on end, scratching their head wondering how to fill the time. It became hugely popular and saw many millennials and gen z’s take up a new DIY hobby. From crocheting to tie dye, we saw it all splattered across our socials, but one that’s picked up steam more recently is tufting.
It’s an ancient technique of textile weaving that was traditionally used to make clothing and accessories for the winter time, usually mittens. And if you’ve stumbled across it while scrolling endlessly through TikTok, you’ll know just how satisfying it is to watch being made.
Traditionally it was all achieved by hand but as with most things, there’s now a slightly easier way to achieve that fluffy finish, and that’s with a tufting ‘gun’. It sees a needle darting in and out of a piece of fabric that’s attached to a wooden frame and speedily pushes the fabric through to create the fun, fleecy effect.
Before using the tufting gun, creators stencil out their design onto the fabric and TikTok has shown that textile artists are using their creative ways to produce seriously fun designs. It’s usually designed onto a rug, and we’ve seen everything from smiley faces and wavy lines, through to detailed whales and even some really quirky Tom and Jerry characters coming to life in rug form.
Enter tufting, the textile craze that’s taken over your social feed.
We’re beyond fascinated by @rugsoda’s designs. Boasting almost 50k followers on TikTok, the Orlando, Florida based artist creates some of the quirkiest designs out there. Scroll on over and check out his videos, and see how he creates Squidward from start to finish. It’s also here that the obsession with Tom from Tom and Jerry remerged, after they posted a video creating a Tom rug running down the stairs, flattened and looking as if it’s been plucked straight from a cartoon.
French artist, @lala.touffee also creates some magical designs, largely focusing on swirly and squiggly lines. While @indoor.activities produces some seriously fun animal designs and distorted faces; we love the bright pink whale design shown above.
Alongside rugs, these creators have been busying themselves producing other textile products too. Think wall hangings, cushion covers and even mirrors that have a fluffy rim around them.
If these videos and designs have spurred you on to create your own tufting masterpiece, you’ll need to read up on the process and invest in some of the equipment. Look to Rug Tufting UK for some inspiration and products that’ll see you on your way to creating a tufting design, from the tuft gun through to the wooden frame and fabric.
Shop the equipment
Shop our edit
For those who love the trend but can’t see yourself trying it out at home, there are a host of places you can buy tufting goodies online. From this adorable smiley wall hanging through to wooly mirror frames. Anthropologie also has a great range of tufted rugs with some really beautiful designs.