Plywood Rug

I’ve been giddy about this board – finally excited to show it off to you!!  Voila – my Plywood Rug:

I have two rolling chairs in my craft room – I roll from one spot to another, etc.  But with the carpet, I try to roll to scoot up my chair to sew, and it’d catch and I’d dump myself half-out.  I needed a rolling surface – so I looked into those floor chair mat things – you know, they’re clear and have spikes on the bottom, etc.  Well I wanted 2 for the large area I needed to cover, and they were cheapest at $30, so I’d be in $60.  Seemed excessive for a craft room.  I was telling Trevor how I wish I knew someone who wanted to give me a floor mat – and he mentioned why not make a board.  One idea lead to another, and now I have my Plywood Rug – love it! – Cost $20 for the board – score!!

–Here’s how to make a plywood rug – or a plywood mat for under chairs – or whatever you want to call it – – buy a 4x8ft board (this one was a nice board – you could get a cheaper one – but this one was smooth – I don’t know what it was – underlayment?) – then I stained it for some added color:

–then stencil – deciding where they go is the hardest part! (FYI, I got my stencil from Cutting Edge Stencils and also used it in my kitchen HERE)

–to protect the paint I sprayed it with clear.  Then I brushed on a coat of polyurethane from a can – gave it an extra shine.

–That’s it – enjoy!!  Here’s an aerial view:

Now, if I just even think about scooting over, I fly so fast, whizzing around my board – it’s great!

UPDATE Feb 2014:  I have had this almost 3 years, and it looks just the same as when I first made it – the paint hasn’t chipped, the board hasn’t cracked or broken – – it is a winner of a project for sure!!

So ditch those expensive ugly plastic mats and make yourself your own awesome custom plywood rug mat – you’ll love it!!

Thanks for checking out this post from – – click on over to read it in its entirety – you’ll love it!

Thanks for Reading


  1. says

    That is a great idea. When I lived at home I trashed the carpet in my bedroom from rolling on my computer chair all the time. My parents should have gotten me something like this!

  2. says

    I am kicking myself. I had to replace the cracked clear plastic chair mats in our office. I wanted a set of bamboo mats but my husband balked at the price. We got a more decorative black plastic mat instead. When they finally go, I’m soooooo replacing them with your idea!

  3. says

    I LOVE this idea! I also have carpet in my craft room and my two tables are across from each other so I am rolling from one side of the room to the other. I would also like to know where you got the stencils.

  4. says

    I am SO excited to see this!!! We are moving into our first home in about a month. It has gorgeous carpet in the basement where I’ve staked out my crafting area (in front of the gas fireplace cause my hubby likes it COLD). As I pack up our current house we’re renting I can see how thrashed the carpeting is around my computer and craft table. And I dreaded the thought of the inevitable clear plastic mat. This is a FABULOUS option!!!!

  5. says

    Such a great idea! I wish I could do this to my dining room but it would really clash with the hideous apartment carpet. Who puts carpet in the dining room, seriously! But seriously, your wood rug is super clever!

  6. says

    I love this idea!!! I have the same problem. My craft room is carpeted, and my chair doesn’t move that great. This would be a much cheaper option than a chair mat too. Those things are expensive! Thanks for the inspiration!

  7. says

    Mandy! this is so freakin cool! Finally something new and creative in the blogging world! I’ll be featuring this beautiful tutorial on BCD on April 5th! I think you should submit this to the Nate Show!

  8. says

    My current chair mat is getting all cracked and in reading the reviews on what’s available, I started wondering if there was something I could diy that’d last longer on my plush carpets–I’m so glad my searching brought me here! I do have two questions, though. How’s the mat held up since you made it? And what’s the thickness of the plywood you used?


  9. says

    Thank you for answering my questions, Mandy. It’s wonderful to know that it’s held up so well and that you still love it. I talked my dad into coming over to cut the plywood for me this afternoon, so I’ll be giving it a try myself all because of your tutorial. Thank you very, very much.

    (I tried to send this back to you by email, but it bounced, so I figured I’d post it here.)

  10. says

    I LOVE this project!!

    I scoot around too on my chair and have often saved myself from the embarrassing dump or pulled a muscle trying to pull the chair over the floor. I share your thoughts that the carpet protectors are far too pricey, but yours is not only a great price but looks infinitely better :D I can just imagine the possibilities for making one of these into an inspiring craft-area rug.

    Thank you!
    Eveningsong Ink blog

  11. says

    How has the plywood rug been holding up to wear and tear? I was thinking of doing this in my kitchen. Its carpeted and I was thinking of putting a plywood rug under my table and chairs. Not sure if it will with stand the weight of a table, chairs, two adults, and 3 kids though. Also I’m not sure if there is a large enough piece to fit under all that. What do you think?

  12. says

    Brilliant idea! I have carpet in my sewing room – yuk – I am so so tired of picking up thread, and cleaning the ones I still me off my vacuum roller. I have 2 of the ugly plastic mats. I have looked and looked for an alternative, and my most recent idea was to rip up the carpet (quite new, I’d keep the piece for when we sell the house) and put down laminate or something. Now I have another idea ….. I’ve seen painted canvas floor rugs too. Similar concept, but I think they’d creep across the rug. Thank you!!

  13. says

    I had a bamboo mat before that basically cracked and broke up after a while of rolling over it with my chair. Any breakage issues yet with the plywood? Such an amazing idea.

  14. says

    I was just going to ask how it was holding up- but I see your comment in May saying it’s still looking great! This is a fantastic idea-so much cuter than those black rubber mats. I may have one of these in my future….

  15. says

    Looks great! I’m attempting to furnish my tiny (carpeted) bedroom/workspace at school and had been looking for a low-cost, customizable alternative to a plastic mat. This would work perfectly! One question: What was thickness of the plywood that you used? I found a post by someone else who had attempted this project and found that after a week or so the wood had begun to curl up a bit at the edges; I’m not sure if that was due to the size, thickness, or weight load, but I’d like to emulate your durable result as closely as possible!

    Thanks! :)

  16. says

    So it’s 2 years later, how’s it holding up? Has it started to chip or does it still look as good? I’m seriously considering this but want to have lots of ammunition in order to convenience hubby dearest that this is a better idea than buying those plastic things with teeth that wear out every few months.

  17. says

    This is great! I am going to have to reuse this idea if you don’t mind. We’ve also used laminate or hardwood flooring, the snap and click kind, for chair mats. You can sometimes pick up a random box at a thrift store or local Habitat for Humanity store for super cheap.
    Debra from


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