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DIY: Make An Easy Floor Cloth In 60 Minutes Or Less

Last Updated on October 11, 2012 by Kristi Linauer


Do you remember me telling you about the trouble I had with my last floor cloth that I made for my kitchen? I liked the way it turned out, but the vinyl flooring that I used had little divots all over it that it basically became a dirt catcher. I ended up getting rid of it, and have had a bare (still ungrouted) kitchen floor for months.

So yesterday, a bit of inspiration hit me. I was looking at a remnant of fabric that I had left over from my outdoor pillows, and I thought to myself, “That would make a great floor cloth!” So off to JoAnn Fabrics I went.

Sadly, they no longer had that particular fabric, but I found a similar one, and this one even had the dark navy blue that I used on the welt cord on my dining chairs. Perfect! They didn’t quite have as much as I had wanted, so my new floor cloth ended up being much smaller than the original one. I guess I have to be okay with that. 🙂

Needless to say, this floor cloth was much easier to make than the one that I painted. Here’s how I did it.

Tools & Supplies

  1. Remnant piece of vinyl flooring (the design doesn’t matter…make sure that the back side is a light solid neutral color),
  2. X-acto knife or utility knife,
  3. Framing square, yardstick, or other straight edge,
  4. Heavy duty spray adhesive,
  5. Enough fabric to cover the vinyl, plus about two inches on each side (a heavy cotton, duck cloth, or canvas is ideal),
  6. Clear non-yellowing sealer,
  7. Paint brush or foam brush.


First, measure out and cut the vinyl flooring to the size you want.  I like to use a framing square for things like this, just so that I know I’m getting near-perfect 90-degree angles.  After it’s cut, be sure to wipe off any dirt and debris with a wet cloth, then let it dry completely.  (Remember, you’re using the back side of the vinyl flooring that doesn’t have any design on it.)

Next, use a heavy duty spray adhesive.  This is the one I prefer, and I always make sure I get the one that says “300” because it’s the strongest, and it comes out as a web (rather than a mist) for more control and less overspray.

And starting at one end, spray about six inches of the vinyl, and begin attaching the fabric.  I worked in about eight inch sections, spraying both the vinyl and the fabric for a really secure hold.  Be very sure to spray every single inch of the vinyl so that you don’t have any bubbles.

When all of the fabric is adhered, it should look something like this.  Now go back over it, and be sure there are no bubbles.  If you see bubbles, just rub really firmly over the area to get them out.

Now flip the vinyl over and wrap the extra fabric around the edges.  I cut the corners to reduce bulkiness, and used the same spray adhesive for this part as well.  Just be sure to spray both the vinyl and the fabric for a permanent hold.

And here it is, all wrapped and folded.  Pretty, huh?  🙂

Next I used clear shellac over the top of the fabric.  It did make the white stripes not quite so white (more of an off-white or very light cream color), so if you need the white in your fabric to stay a brilliant stark white, you’ll want to find another sealer for your floor cloth.

Here is a comparison of the floor cloth after a coat of shellac and the extra fabric.  You can see that there’s not much difference in the whites, but there is a slight different…just enough to be irritating to someone who wanted a brilliant stark white.  🙂  You’ll also notice that I painted the red stripes with orange paint on the floor cloth.  I had to get my orange in there somewhere!!

And here it is in my kitchen (on my still-ungrouted floor).  I do like the depth of colors on this one better than the original one.

I also love that it has the navy blue that’s on my dining chairs, as well as on my valance.

It’s all coming together!  Heck, at this break neck speed, I might even have my kitchen and breakfast room finished by New Year’s Eve!  😀

Linking to:
Tatertots & Jello

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  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Deb Donner
    August 15, 2012 at 9:11 am

    Great idea!! Brilliant!! Wonderful!! Now, grout you floor!!! 🙂

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    TKraft Art & Interiors
    August 15, 2012 at 9:20 am

    Very clever and beautiful floor cloth, I’m so copying… and so loving your color and accessory story. Get that floor tile grouted ASAP – tell hubby it’s part of his weight loss / healthy life style routine… manual labor. 🙂

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    guerrina waters
    August 15, 2012 at 10:09 am

    Hi, Kristi! I love this idea and want to figure a way to do a quite large one for my kitchen! Using fabric caught my eye as I often see ones that would be perfect! Hmmm…then maybe a matching one for under the adjacent dining table! Oh the possibilities!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Ginny @
    August 15, 2012 at 3:31 pm

    LOVE it!!! I love the fabric you used! I am so picky with fabrics and have a hard time choosing a mat that matches my kitchen. This opens up so many possibilities with all the awesome fabric choices out there! Does the shellac make it somewhat hard? I’m pinning this. 🙂

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Kristi Linauer
      August 15, 2012 at 4:07 pm

      Thanks, Ginny! The shellac mostly just sealed the fabric. Doesn’t really feel like fabric anymore. I plan on putting a few more coats on later, so that it’ll be really good and durable.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 15, 2012 at 3:46 pm

    Love this and I so need some updated rugs/ mats in my kitchen. Do you think we could just go to Home Depot or Lowe’s and ask for a remnant?

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    August 15, 2012 at 6:21 pm

    I love it! I agree with you that this one is even better than the first and so much easier too.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Diane | An Extraordinary Day
    August 15, 2012 at 10:43 pm

    You crack me up! I think the floor is next!!!!!!!
    Creative way to do the rug. Looks GREAT!!
    I understand that shellac yellows over time…so maybe poly might be a better choice?

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Kristi Linauer
      August 15, 2012 at 11:01 pm

      Well, bummer. The lady at HD suggested this particular shellac specifically because it says it goes on clear and is guaranteed to not darken over time. I guess we’ll see! 🙂

      • Reply To This Comment ↓
        Diane | An Extraordinary Day
        August 16, 2012 at 8:08 am

        Let’s cross our fingers that she’s right. Maybe it’s a newer version and DOES stay clear. Besides, I have no idea how long it would be before you’d see yellowing. You might be sick and tired of your beautiful rug by that time 😀

      • Reply To This Comment ↓
        February 18, 2013 at 11:29 pm

        Hi, I worked in a hardware store for a long time and the paint section was my favorite. Shellac not matter what brand or what it says is an old fashion sealer and will yellow slightly over time. Manufactures recommend using shellac on your furniture vs poly if you want an aged or antique look later on. Hope this helps.

      • Reply To This Comment ↓
        December 14, 2014 at 5:18 pm

        Hi Kristi,

        I want to pack a similar floor cloth for my kitchen and was wondering if the shellac yellowed over time? Was this floor cloth durable?

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    November 15, 2012 at 10:40 pm

    I want to hear about the chandelier in the valance section. Did you paint it?

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    February 21, 2013 at 4:17 pm

    LOVE LOVE LOVE IT..!! i wanna make one 🙂
    Just wondering how to wash it when it gets dirty

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    willow murawski
    March 10, 2013 at 8:10 am

    seems like this one would stay in place better with the underturned fabric edges. do you wipe it down to clean it?

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Lisa Layne
    April 13, 2013 at 7:53 am

    You are amazing. I am looking through your site and am in awe.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    January 1, 2014 at 1:31 pm

    What did you do to prevent overspray of the adhesive onto the vinyl when doing the underside. I want to do something like this on an ugly, but useful, chef’s mat for a friend who spends lots of time in the kitchen. Do you think it will work on a padded surface? Thank you for sharing this project, I love it!! So many possibilities!!

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Tania Guerrero
      March 26, 2019 at 1:40 pm

      Hi! Love the idea…but just thinking…how do you clean the cloth?

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Lori L
    June 5, 2015 at 7:34 pm

    Is this at your condo?

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    February 4, 2016 at 11:48 am

    Courious…how do you wash it?