How to Tuft Lesson 1: Cut vs Loop Pile

Hi I’m Shawna, I make tufted rugs and I’m gonna teach you how to tuft in micro lessons, in detail, from the beginning, let’s go.

The first thing we’re gonna go over is loop vs cut pile because which one you want to do is going to inform which tufting gun you should buy.

With either of these types of tufting, what the gun is doing is pushing yarn through fabric so that on the other side of the fabric your rug starts to form

With loop pile, the tufting gun just pushes the yarn through. The yarn stays intact as one long strand that loops back and forth giving this well, loopy look

With cut pile, after pushing the yarn through each time, the tufting gun also cuts the loop. The yarn gets cut into tiny strands, and it gives this look which is probably what you’re most used to seeing in a regular carpet

Whether you choose loop or cut pile is most likely just gonna be based off of what look you’re going for. Many people do both, sometimes even in the same piece like my friend Sam Lao. If you want to do both, there are plenty of machines that let you switch back and forth, we’ll talk about specific models in another video

Some other considerations are with loop pile, you’re gonna need to keep some scissors close by at all times. Because the machine doesn’t cut the yarn, if you need to switch from tufting one area to another or switch between colors, you’re gonna need to cut the yarn yourself. Otherwise, as soon as you pull the machine away from the fabric, it’s going to tug on the strand and start unraveling all the work you just did. It can be a little tedious but you get used to it

For that same reason, if you make a mistake, it’s really easy to fix it with loop pile. You can just tug on the yarn and then re-tuft with the same piece of yarn. Undoing mistakes with cut pile is more tedious because you have to pick out each of those tiny cut strands and you can’t reuse them

Another area of difference is in finishing. With both styles it’s very common for two colors next to each other to cross and you’ll need to clean up and poke them back into place. That’s all you need for loop pile but with cut pile, it’s very common for folks to do additional trimming and even sculpting which can take a lot of additional time

Alright, that’s it for this lesson. Next we’ll talk about specific tufting gun models to choose from.

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published