If you’ve ever wanted to own a floor mat of a butt for some good laughs or a mirror with a colourful tufted frame but can’t seem to find one, Tuft Club is your answer. The first tufting studio in Singapore offers 4.5-hour long sessions for you to make your own customised, eccentric-looking masterpiece.
As someone who considers herself quite the DIY master, I was pretty excited at making my very own rug, especially with the endless design possibilities available to me. After seeing countless videos of the process and the end results, I couldn’t wait to try it for myself and find out if it was as tiring as many others had claimed.
In case you haven’t heard, tufting is all the rage on TikTok now, with tons of viral videos showcasing amateur rug-makers punching strands of yarn into monk’s cloth with a gun. Tuft Club offers this unique art jamming experience, where you can try your hand at this craft and bring home your own shaggy creation.
On our trip to Tuft Club, we saw just how wild people ran with their imaginations, with rugs of butts, Yoda, The Powerpuff Girls, and everything in between.
Tuft Club has 25 different colours of cotton yarn and 50 colours of wool yarn available
Tuft Club has workshops on making a rug or mirror, both of which have extremely similar processes. Mirror tufting only differs in that it requires you to leave an empty space for a mirror to be fitted in later on.
Before going in, it’s best to come with a design in mind for the staff to give you advice on what works best. Especially since we were first timers, we were advised to pick simple designs and avoid intricate details.
I decided to try my hand at making a rug of Appa from Avatar: The Last Airbender, simply because I liked the idea of owning a cute animal rug. Though I was worried about it being complicated, the staff assured me that it was completely doable and that they were always there to lend a hand.
Once we were handed all the necessary equipment – the monk’s cloth stretched onto a frame, access to 50 colours of wool yarn ($38 top up from regular yarn), and a tufting gun – we were ready to jump straight into creating our masterpieces.
The whole process kicked off with us sketching our designs onto the monk’s cloth. We were also recommended to mark the insides with the colour we intended to fill it in with, essentially creating for ourselves a pseudo paint-by-numbers canvas. This way, we didn’t have to worry about picking what colours to use or have to constantly check our reference photos.
With sketching done, we were then given a quick crash course on how to use the tufting gun. Having seen numerous videos of people with reddened hands from long hours of tufting, I was prepared for the worst. Surprisingly, the machine was pretty easy to wield, and each of us got a chance to practice before we potentially decimated our own rug.
Izac, our expert on hand, took us through the necessary steps and helped us create our first few lines and curves. He prepared a canvas for us with pre-drawn lines to trace over, but it was mostly needing to push the tool into the canvas that made the tufting process a little difficult to control.
After getting used to maneuvering the gun, we were mostly comfortable enough to start working on our designs.
I started out with the black outlines at co-founder Zoey’s recommendation. And since 99% of the outlines consisted pretty much of curves, filling them in was a nightmare and I found it difficult to control the tufting gun.
In hindsight, I may have been a little ambitious choosing a design that was so round. But in my moments of struggle, Zoey came by to give me tips and help out where needed. Slowly, I managed to get the hang of it.
For someone like me who’s a major perfectionist, I was worried that the mistakes I made would be irreversible, but it was really easy to remove any misplaced yarn if needed.
When I first started, every punch of thread was followed by me removing yarn, thereby accumulating a good pile by my station, just so that my work would be perfect. But after a while, the ache from tufting for hours made me forget about being a perfectionist and I just went all in, mindlessly enjoying the process.
Before we knew it, each of our rugs started to take form. Though it was tough getting precise lines and curves at first, the tufting eventually became a therapeutic experience.
The final results at the end of the workshop
Though we were allocated 4.5 hours, most of us actually got it done with plenty of time to spare, even with multiple breaks in between. At the end of it, the inhouse experts helped to touch up any gaps so our rugs went from amateur-looking to professional.
After being lovingly neatened and sheared to rid our pieces of loose and stray strands, the back is glued down onto a rubber mat placed on to secure the design. All you’ll have to do then is wait for the completed tufted rug to be delivered to your location of choice in 2-3 weeks, completely free of charge.
Despite coming in with zero experience, the Tuft Club’s patient teachers made it so easy to explore a new craft without fear of messing up. Not to mention, its cosy atmosphere, comfortable pace, and open concept would make it a great group outing, an interesting date idea, or even a fun activity for your hen’s night.
Price: Both rug tufting and mirror tufting start from $195 ($38 top up required to use wool yarn)
Address: 57 Circular Road, #03-01, Singapore 049412
Opening hours: Wed – Mon, 10AM-10PM (closed on Tuesdays)
Telephone: 8023 0237
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Photography by Tasha Sun.
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