Rug hooking goes back hundreds and thousands of years. Everything from intricate tiny designs to big folk art style designs. What they all have in common is some sort of material that makes the 'pile'. This might be loops or cut loops. I'm not the expert on this, other than appreciating the beauty and skill it takes to make a rug.
This is the basic information that I provided when I used to teach this class to beginners. Other articles will go into more detail. After trying many styles and methods of hooking.
Find the square inches in the rug you are going to hook (width x height).
If your pattern is 24” x 36” you have 864 square inches. ( 24 x 36 = 864)
If you are using a #3 or #4 size cutter head you need four times the area to be covered.
Using the above size rug as an example multiply 864 x 4, which equals 3456 square inches. There are 2052 square inches in a yard of rug wool, so divide 3456 by 2052 and you will need approximately 1 5/8 yards of wool.
If you are using a #5 size cutter head you need five times the area to be covered. Using the same example, multiply 864 times 5 (4320) and divide by 2052. You will need approximately 2 1/8 yards of wool.
Remember - this is only a guideline - everyone hooks differently.
Example is based on a 1-yard piece of 57" wide wool off of a bolt.
First, notch and tear the wool every 12 inches. Notch on the selvage. This will give you 3 pieces of wool measuring 12" x 57".
Then notch and tear the wool every 3 inches.
Now, run the 3" x 12" pieces of wool through the cutter (or to cut it by hand). Cut as straight as possible. If the fabric goes on the bias even a little, hooking can cause the loop to break.
If you are cutting by hand and are using 1/4" strips of wool for hooking, notch and tear your 3" x 12" piece of wool every 1/2". Then use your sharpest shears to cut the 1/2" strip in half.
Traditional hooking is the process of making continuous loops with strips of tightly woven fabric and packing them tightly to form an even pile on a foundation material. The work is done on the right side, using a tool called a hook, best described as a crochet hook with a handle.
How to Hook