Mother’s Day reflections, a cherished family tradition: braiding rugs. Explore the memories and treasures associated with this heartfelt practice throughout the generations.

Braiding Rug Stand with Braided Rugs, a Mother's Day reflections.

A Vintage Braiding Rug Stand

This little braiding rug stand holds invaluable memories and family keepsakes.

My grandmother handmade all of her own braided rugs that canvased her Maine home in the early 1900s.

This was the braiding rug stand she used,

which was later passed down to my mother, who also made her own braided rugs,

and now it is my memento to treasure.

Sadly, though, I never carried on this braiding rug family tradition,

although earlier photos verify that I was certainly introduced to braiding, and I remember it all very well.

Mother’s Day Reflections

With the sentiments of Mother’s Day upon me, I started to rummage through some old family photos while I was here in Maine, getting our home Summer-Ready.

Old Photos and Bernese Mountain Dog, a Mother's Day reflections.

I came across this next photo from 1969. My mother hand-wrote every date and place on the back of all her photos, and they are organized perfectly throughout numerous photo albums.

It is of me at 4 years old, braiding my first braided rug on my mother’s braiding rug stand in the Den at our home on the Nubble in Maine.

You may enjoy the post, Coastal Maine Heritage – Embracing My Roots, where I have written extensively about growing up in Coastal Maine and a Mother’s Day reflection.

Child braiding a rug, a Mother's Day reflections

And you know what?

That black captain’s chair in the above photo was still up in our attic.

That green laundry basket, filled here with my mother’s cloth rug braids, resides in the linen closet.

I recently refinished that vintage blue chest of drawers, which is now in the guest bedroom at our Home in Vermont. See more in the Vintage Dresser Refashioned | Something Old Something New post.

And I still have the leftover cloth rug braids too, all 54 years later.

Braiding Rug Stand with Braided Rugs, Mother's Day reflections.

So, I decided to pull them all together for today’s blog post as a Mother’s Day reflection for all of you who have braided rugs and taught your daughters how to braid their own rugs.

I think I need to try making a braided rug now; what do you think?

Have you ever made your own braided rugs?

Braided Rug Stand with Braided Rugs, Mother's Day reflections

Braiding Rug Stand: Mother’s Day Reflections

Truth be told, I don’t know that much about braiding rugs. I know that I enjoyed braiding rugs, but I gave it up when it came time to sew the braids together. This I remember well! I never had much patience, especially when I was younger.

Did you ever realize that a braiding rug stand was so simple?

The braiding rug stand is a wooden contraption built to hold cloth braids with a braiding clamp while you sit in a chair and braid. You could very easily make one of your own.

This is what this old braiding rug stand’s clamp looks like in a close-up.

Vintage Braiding Rug Stand Clamp

The braiding rug clamps seem to be very rare these days, and I couldn’t find anything similar to this vintage braiding rug stand online.

And for all I know, honestly, my grandfather could have made this braiding rug stand. He was a carpenter and a builder, so it’s possible, and it looks a bit homemade.

Shop Vintage Braiding Rug Stand Clamps

This post may contain affiliate links, which won’t change your price but will share some commission.

Vintage Braiding Rug Stand and braided rugs in bedroom

My mother also used a simple clothespin to hold the cloth braids tight when she took a break from braiding.

I had not touched this in-the-making braided rug when I snapped most of these photos. This is exactly how my mother left it the last time she braided this rug, another moment of a Mother’s Day reflection.

Braiding Rug Stand with Clothespin

At some later date, my mother (or most likely my father) must have painted the braiding rug stand white from its original wood pine.

The white has gotten pretty dirty over the years, as I’m sure you can imagine.

Therefore, I chose to repaint it with this guest bedroom’s blue trim, where this braiding rug stand has found a home.

Generations of Braided Rugs

Today, I have four of my mother’s handmade braided rugs and 1 from my grandmother, along with this vintage braiding rug stand that embraces the formless braided rug.

Braided Rugs with Braiding Rug Stand

All of these are used on our wood floors every day here at our home in Maine.

And these handmade braided rugs are some of my prize possessions today, next to Ella:)

Braided Rugs on Colonial Home Wood Flooring, Mother's Day reflections.
My Grandmother and Mother’s Braided Rugs Side by Side

Click on each photo to see more of my Mother’s Day reflections.

You may also enjoy the post, How to Fold and Display Heirloom Quilts.

Vintage Rugs, Bernese Mountain Mountain Dog and Quilts

A Captains Chair: Mother’s Day Reflections

Then, I decided to bring the black captain’s chair down from the attic.

It wasn’t as big as I had remembered it. Has that ever happened to you?

But I remembered that my mother had painted this chair herself and hand-stenciled the details in gold.

She loved eagles, so I am not surprised that the stencil was of a Liberty eagle.

Braided Rugs, Captains Chair and Braiding Rug Stand, Mother's Day reflections

You may also enjoy the post, 4 Things You Need to Know About This Old Chair.

Quilting Book

I also found this fabulous small and vintage Fern Carter’s Braided Rug Book, published in 1953, amongst my mother’s sewing and quilting books.

Which will look charming on a bedside table or dresser as a home decor accent.

Vintage Braided Rug Book

The blog series In My Mother’s Maine Home is one of my favorites. Please drop by to see more of our family-inherited home from the time we inherited it until today.

Woman in Convertible with Basset Hound in Maine

You may also enjoy seeing more of this guest bedroom in the post: Small Cottage Guest Bedroom, Vintage and Delightful.

Along with our Summer Coastal Maine Home Tour.

Vintage Braiding Rug Stand| A Mother's Day Reflection

A Daughter’s Mother’s Day Reflection

Thanks, Mom, for all the beach days growing up in Maine,

the ski days together with our fur hats,

and for teaching me to surround myself with close, lifelong girlfriends.

And so much more!

Wishing you Lovely Mother’s Day Reflections.

Gratefully Vintage

If you have any thoughts, comments, or suggestions, I’d love to hear from you. Please share in the comments below. And be sure to share this blog post link with your friends who are also vintage enthusiasts.

Do you have a flair for all things vintage, too? I would love to see and feature you in our Reader’s Showcase Series. A place for you to share and be recognized for your talents and passion for all things thrifting, vintage, and antique decor-related inspired by your time here with Dabbling & Decorating. Email me at

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  1. I think you are correct in thinking your Grandfather probably made that stand. My grandmother and mother also used to braid rugs and taught me how to when I was young. Both had a house full of braided rugs. I haven’t tried braiding in years and I remember the hardest part was sewing the braids together and making sure the rug laid flat. We used to use one of those clips and clip it on the side of the dining room table, I never saw a stand like that, but what a great idea!

    1. That’s so interesting Debbie that you had a clip on a dining room table. I think he made it too. It’s funny, as I’ve known of it for so many years and never gave that much thought to it until now. Funny how things are like that. Thanks for your lovely note.

  2. Love love love your rugs. We have SO many that my husband’s grandma made! At least 40. We ended up being the family keeper of her rag rugs but have passed some on to interested cousins and our kids each got a couple. The ones not in use are on display in a bedroom armoire. She did teach me and a few girlfriends one time but I only made chair pads and they weren’t very good. In the late 1970s a decorator with Ethan Allen came to our house and she wanted to hire Grandma to make rugs for clients. When I told Grandma she said, “why would anybody pay money for old rag rugs?” 🙂 she always had a rug or quilt going, my favorite, like yours, is the unfinished work in progress. Grandma used diaper pins on the ends, I never saw or heard of an actual rug making stand and the clip thingie. Very clever and certainly made it easier.

    1. Thank you so much Pamela. I love your story thanks so much for sharing it. Aren’t we so fortunate to have them? I have a feeling the rug stand was homemade, as I haven’t seen anything like it either. I just love it like you do. Thanks again for stopping by and and for sharing your wonderful story!

  3. What a fun post! Your braided rugs are beautiful! I love that picture of you and your mom on skis best of all! Are you wearing a poncho?! Too darn cute!

  4. Linda Scott says:

    That was a lovely post. Now you need to finish the rug so that your hand can also touch that beautiful rug!! Funny that you remembered the chair was bigger then it was and yes that happened to me when I went back to my childhood home as an adult. I remembered it being so big as a child until I saw it with my adult eyes. Enjoy the day and your homes are beautiful!

    1. Thanks so much Linda, I know I’m thinking about it, I mentioned to someone else I wish I had some friends to braid with, I think that would motivate me more to get it finished. And I would need to learn how to sew it together. But it’s definitely on my mind. Happy Mother’s Day to you!

  5. Braided rugs are so pretty and colorful Ann. What a beautiful post. Your mom would be so proud of you for the way you keep her memory alive.

    1. Thank you so much Kim, it’s all brought me so much joy. Happy Mother’s Day!!

  6. Oh Ann, thank you so much for sharing this delightful sentimental post! Years ago a group of us( girl friends) tried braiding rugs, I agree with you, the braiding was fun sewing together was a bit of a chore.
    Always love your posts!

    1. Thanks so much Patricia, that sounds like fun, I wish I had some gals to braid with, that would be fun and would probably get me to finish one! Happy Mother’s Day!

    1. Thanks so much Susan, Happy Mother’s Day!

  7. Karen Barnum says:

    What wonderful memories and treasures you have! I can tell you are so proud of both. As I read through your blog, I was reminded of the huge braided rug we had in our den.

    1. Thank you Karen, happy Mother’s Day my friend!

  8. Lisa Anderson says:

    What a great post Ann! Love seeing the old pics of you and your mom. She would love all of the girlfriend time we have been having:)

    1. Thanks Lisa, see you later on this gorgeous Mother’s Day!

  9. Leslie Richter says:

    What wonderful memories! The braided rugs have vibrant colors and are very beautiful! I have never seen a braiding stand so this was really interesting to me. You are so fortunate to have these heirlooms. My mother in law and her mother made braided rugs, hooked rugs and rag rugs. I am fortunate to have inherited two large rag rugs and a beautiful hooked rug. Thank you for posting these heirlooms and the stories behind them!

    1. Thank you Leslie, aren’t they all just such treasures and you must adore your collection too. Thanks for dropping by and Happy Mother’s Day!

  10. What a treasure. The rugs are beautiful. This made me miss my own mom so much. On another note, my sister made a rug like this in the 70’s out of old pantyhose!

    1. Thank you Kathy, I’m thrilled you enjoyed it. Pantyhose? That’s a new one on me, haha. Happy Mother’s Day and thanks kindly for stopping by!

  11. So interesting!!!
    Thank you very much

    1. Thanks for stopping by Mariya, Happy Mother’s Day!

  12. What a wonderful tribute to the braiders who created those treasures! I’ve always wanted to make one, maybe I will! Happy Mothers day 💓

    1. I’m so glad you enjoyed it Sandi, I enjoyed putting it all together so much. Happy Mother’s Day and good luck in making your own braided rug!