My favourite interiors mag arrived through the door yesterday morning. In their June edition, Elle Decoration UK have featured the six biggest trends in rugs at the moment and guess what…..Vintage comes in at No.6. No surprise there then!
With such a huge range of vintage rugs available to buy in the marketplace, we’re really pleased to be able to offer a choice from a huge collection in Marrakech, from the minimalist design of a classic Beni Ouarain rug to the artistic and colourful design of a Boucherouite rug. Buying a vintage rug will give you the guarantee that there will be no other exactly the same, but there are certain things to look out for when buying.
Vintage Berber rugs were originally woven for their utility, usually sold by families to raise money, and most will have had a long and useful life. Look out for signs of wear and small repairs, this is completely normal and desirable in a genuine vintage piece. Most will have been used in a family home for around 20-30 years. If a rug looks too perfect, chances are it’s a relatively new piece. Additional photos of our rugs are always available, and we can carry out any additional repairs required.
Check that the rug has been washed. All of our rugs and washed and dried prior to shipping from Morocco.
Remember that some of the dyes used in a colourful rug may not necessarily be colour fast.
As part of the introduction of our modern Berber range, we are pleased to be able to offer a sample service for our modern Kilims. These are just a few of the sample sizes arriving from Marrakech shortly, they will be available in various colours and designs. We understand how difficult it is to know exactly what the texture/weave/design of a flatweave is like and exactly how this will look in your own home and so, depending upon your location, we will be happy to either send out samples on loan, or come out to see you to have a chat about your requirements. If you’re thinking about commissioning a bespoke modern Berber Kilim, or if you would just like to see a sample before ordering an off the peg piece, please get in touch and we’ll be more than happy to help. firstname.lastname@example.org
Our Marrakech showroom (Bazar du Sud) has recently undergone a transformation, and is looking particularly stunning at the moment! Based in a beautiful old Riad in the Medina, the whitewashed walls, potted palms and traditional Zellige tiled floor provide the perfect backdrop to our vast collection of both vintage and modern Berber rugs and kilims. A low cream sofa provides a welcome resting place…….with so much choice, you are sure to need a comfy seat (and plenty of mint tea!) for contemplation! If you would like to arrange a showroom visit, please email us at email@example.com, we will be happy to organise this for you.
Looking back over the last year, some of the best bits have to be seeing the photos from our amazing day shooting at The Roost and Dalston Heights in Hackney. This montage has been put together by photographer Ann Ashfield. Early in 2017 we’re planning to do a shoot at the very cool home of a friend in the music business. With her huge vinyl collection and walls covered in gold, silver and platinum discs, that should be great fun! We’ll keep you posted.
Looking forward to the coming year, we will be working more closely than ever with our partner/supplier Bazar du Sud in Marrakech. Their inventory of both new and vintage carpets is second to none. If you’re in Marrakech, and you would like to pay them a vist, let us know. Yazid and his team will be sure to give you a very warm welcome.
Inspired by this amazing image, we’ll be adding some Beni Ouarain runners to our site over the next few days. This is the first time I’ve actually seen a Beni stair runner, but after doing a bit of research, I found that this one was commissioned by Frances Elkins, legendary decorator and sister of architect David Adler, in 1929 for a Chicago interior. Just stunning. Happy New Year everyone!
‘Hygge’ is a word which seems to be appearing more and more in relation to interiors….I’ve been seeing it regularly on blogs, Instagram posts and magazines, but honestly had no real idea exactly what it meant. So thank you Elle Decoration UK, for your definitive guide to hygge in your January 2017 Winter Living Issue, which explains all! Hygge is a Danish word which encompasses the idea of cosiness and well being, it’s all about taking pleasure in life, whatever it is that you’re doing. Their article includes four great book titles for those who are interested in the Danish way of living well.
When it comes to interiors, obviously we’re really talking about comfort and cosiness, and this is especially apt for the winter season……sheepskin, faux fur, fireside rugs, soft warm lighting and candles. Elle Deco have put together a winter warmers wish list, which includes (of course!) a soft and fluffy Beni Ouarain rug. Check out our collection of modern Beni rugs, in perfect fireside sizes, to keep your feet warm as toast this winter. Happy holidays!
We’re just back from our sourcing trip to Morocco, and remain convinced that Marrakech is still the best place to source Moroccan rugs. The weather was unseasonably hot and humid, with just a little rain on one morning which very quickly disappeared. Staying in an unfamiliar part of the Medina, it was an adventure as always to find our way to familiar places, but souk wandering is a must when you’re here!
We’ve seen some beautiful new Beni Ouarain productions, in a range of new colours and designs (including blue and pink!) all up on our website soon…..and have some more stunning Flatweaves and Boucherouite already on their way over to the UK. Our partner/supplier has such a vast inventory of both old and new rugs, all catalogued and photographed that we are sure that if we can’t find what you’re looking for here in Marrakech, it can’t be found! We’ll be adding a collection of vintage Beni Mguild rugs to our website soon, reversible pieces where the design is clearly visible on the back of the carpet.
In the meantime check out our collection of Petit Beni Ouarain, some beautifully soft small rugs, made from the finest quality wool, all originally made as samples. These are also located in Marrakech, and we’ll be uploading additional photos of these over the next few days.
We will be back in Marrakech at the end of this month, spending time in the Souk des Tapis, living and breathing rugs for a while! If you know what you’re looking for, Marrakech is still a great place to source both vintage and contemporary Moroccan rugs. We are lucky enough to work in hand in hand with a very well established family business there who have a knowledge of the history of their rugs built up over generations of trading. We don’t claim to know absolutely everything about Moroccan rugs, it’s a continual learning curve for us, but what we don’t know they can certainly tell us! They have a very large stock available on the ground in Marrakech, which they source direct from the weavers. If there is anything special you are looking for, a particular size or style of rug, please let us know, we will always do our best to find your perfect rug. Our special relationship with our supplier means they will always be on the lookout for our clients’ requirements. We are also regularly updated and have first dibs on any new and interesting rugs in their collection. Their excellent weavers in the Atlas mountains also supply our beautiful custom made Beni Ouarain rugs. Please get in touch if you would like any more information on any of our stock either in the UK or Marrakech. We would love to hear from you! firstname.lastname@example.org
A sneak peak of some beautiful Vintage Kilim Boucherouite arriving this month to add to our collection…..
These colourful flatweaves are woven from pieces of recycled textiles, are light and durable, and perfect for throwing down on a wooden or stone floor to add warmth, texture and colour. Above is a lovely kilim abstractly decorated with tribal motifs including eight-pointed ‘Solomon’s star’ (female fertility) symbols.
Although you may find many similar kilims, no two are exactly alike. In contrast to the kilim in the first photo, the one above has an orderly vertical zig zag design with contrasting horizontal weaving at each end, and below a traditional lozenge design. Easy to clean, they are perfect for kitchens, bathrooms and children’s rooms. All three arriving later this month….we will keep you posted!
There’s a lot to be said for the good old fashioned idea of ‘airing’ a carpet, and taking it outside to give it a good beating. Cleaning a rug in Morocco is very similar…….shake it, wash it, dry it. Simple but effective, it’s common sense really, and they don’t have moth problems. The rugs are taken outside and washed with soapy water, either with buckets and brushes on roof terraces or in streams or rivers, and then left in the sun to dry. Great…but not so easy unless you have these facilities and the weather to go with them, but you can follow the same basic principles.
We’re in the process of producing a printed guide to go out with all our rugs, but in the meantime here are some basic do’s and don’ts….
Air your rug regularly and shake it outside to remove the dirt and dust
Hoover your rug from side to side only (not along the length)
Spot clean any marks with a mild detergent
Consider a specialist carpet cleaning service for cleaning the whole rug. Washing is great, you could use your bathtub, but these rugs are extremely heavy when wet….I’ve tried it! A small Boucherouite rug will be easy to wash and dry, you may even be able to fit one into your washing machine and tumble dryer, but a larger wool rug requires different handling.
Use any harsh detergents, chemicals or bleach based products. These can damage the wool in a rug and leave unsightly patches.
So there you go….a common sense guide to caring for your rug!
Fantastic to see this beautiful coat at New York Fashion Week by Ulla Johnson…….Gorgeous or what?
It clearly takes its inspiration from the design of traditional Berber wedding blankets or Handira, embellished with hundreds of sequins and fringing. It’s not the first time we’ve seen this inspiration recently. This beautiful jumper is available from Plumo’s Autumn collection, and takes the same inspiration.
It’s not unusual to see trends from the catwalk filtering down to interiors. Colour trends, designs and textures usually follow down from one to the other, but it’s great to see the reverse, the catwalk taking inspiration from traditional textiles. That beautiful coat by Ulla Johnson appearing at NYFW is a sure sign that something similar will soon be in our high street stores! Stunning….it’s definitely on my Christmas list.