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Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Aunt Lydia's Heavy Rug Yarn, American Thread

Aunt Lydia's Heavy Rug Yarn was a favorite yarn of many.   It's primary use, of course, was rugs, but some used it for placemats, scrub cloths, bathroom sets and hats.   A few patterns were presented promoting the yarn sweaters, however, the yarn did not hold it's shape well enough for essential clothing.

 It was initially sold in 70 yard skeins.  It was a 50% Rayon, 50% Cotton, 4-ply blend.

American Thread brought the yarn to market in 1949 at the average price (for that time period), of 25 center per skein.

In the mid 1950's the fiber blend was changed to 75% Nylon and 50% Cotton

In 1978 another fiber change was made to the product; it is now 100% Kodel Polyster and is now referenced as a 3-ply yarn.   Shortly after, skeins sizes also expanded to include 60 and 180 yards. 

Over this long life-span, American Thread issued several pattern books, all termed "Star Rug Book", followed by the actual book numbers.   These books largely contain rug patterns .... a rather great assortment, I must say.  

And, of course, advertised in many of the needlecraft magazines.

Photo from Ebay Seller ksn3229.

Sales of this plugged along until it was discontinued on 1979.   It had, indeed, a long and successful life.

Now, if you have one of the patterns and are looking for a substitute, I'd suggest that about any brand of Heavy Rug Yarn, 3 or 4 ply, that meets the stated gauge, is going to do.    Or, should you be looking for a pattern, I have quite a few in the shop.

Thanks for dropping by,


  1. I found some of my Mom's old yarn (and Aunt Lydia's) was one of the brands. What would you say is a fair price to place it on Ebay (per full skein) ?

  2. That would be difficult for me to say. It depends upon the yarn (whether the same type is still readily available in stores) and the quantity. Many patterns, for example afghans, require quite a few skeins.

  3. I just purchased from an online auction, 2 tufted rugs made with Aunt Lydia's heavy rug yarn.

  4. Thank you so much for the information. I just bought 45 60-yards skeins that I plan to sell in my Etsy site. With your information, I definitely can say these are vintage yarn.

    Kind regards,

  5. I buy mine at goodwill and other thrift stores, it's almost always in mine near me. I have at least six skeins all unused in my stash, I think I paid around 3.99 for a full bag of them. I would balk at paying any more than a few dollars per. After all, it's mostly rayon! The prices people as on ebay and etsy are outrageous.