While many restaurants and food brands have created clothing lines and makeup products to build hype for their business, the artists fueling the food-inspired tufted rug trend often run their own small businesses, and are flipping the script.

Each tufted rug showcases the artist’s unique style through their choice of food, attention to detail, and choice of color. Food brands come and go. The limited edition t-shirt that was sold to promote the latest release will look outdated within ten years. But these tufted rugs by these artists who run small businesses won’t go out of style because they were made with the intention of artistic expression, celebrating food without an agenda, opposed to a larger company with the intention of selling specific products.

Tufted rug-making videos have found their niche on TikTok, appearing on countless For You Pages, proving that rug making is not just mass-produced in a factory, but can be individualized, requiring skill and dedication from an artist. These rug-making videos have gained millions of views, captivating viewers with their satisfying creation process of puncturing a blank canvas with yarn by use of a tuft gun. The trend of rug tufting is accessible to even the most novice crafter, thanks to the abundance of tutorials on YouTube

While rug tufting artists have different preferences on how they finish the backing of the rug, they typically start the rug creation process the same. Artists will start by sketching the design on the blank canvas. Then, the artists fill in the sketched design with yarn. Once satisfied with the shape, they use their tufting gun in a similar way a painter would use a paint brush to add color to a canvas.

With limitless possibilities of what kind of rug to make, artists like Chrissy Crater, Hannah Edison, and Lindsey Howard have turned to food for inspiration.  

Crater’s work is bright and sweet. Her cake slices look delicious enough to eat. The rug’s colorful and cartoonish aesthetic reminds me of the whimsical food in the Webkinz world, making me feel nostalgic for my childhood days of spending hours playing online.

Another artist making food rugs is Hanna Eidson. Her work is crisp and captures food in its rawest form. Her use of shadows provides a sense of realism. Even in rug form the fruit and veggies look fresh! After looking through Eidson’s Instagram, I want to go to the farmer's market ASAP! 

The last artist I wanted to highlight is Lindsey Howard. Howard also makes food-inspired ceramics in addition to tufted rugs. Her creations often combine foods that are not often associated with each other. For example, she has created ceramic sculptures that have a burger in a salad and another piece that has sushi in a bowl of spaghetti. I could definitely see Howard’s work being served by the latest Instagrammable restaurant. The combos are innovative and would draw in foodies looking to spice up their food instagram. I might have to try some watermelon pizza sometime! Perhaps watermelon pizza is an underrated sweet and salty combo? 

All of the rugs featured are handmade and truly one of a kind! So to snag one of your own you can commission an rug-tufting artist, keep up with one the artists mentioned above on social media, or even attempt to DIY one. You are bound to find a rug that suits your taste whether you want a rug of food that looks like it’s from outer space or a simple banana.