Holiday Inventory: Rug Stockings

These stockings are a unique addition to any Christmas day celebration! They are hand-carded, hand-spun wool, natural dyes and authentic rug designs made in the villages of Turkey. Orders can be made by phone at 216-320-9300. Happy holidays!

The Beauty of Buying Trips

Buying TripA few times a year, I travel to various places in the world to help bring in fresh merchandise to the store. I love being able to find new one-of-a-kind pieces that tell a story. When a customer takes this piece of art into their home, it’s not only exciting for me, but they always seem to be so happy with their purchase. I like to believe it’s not only because they like the way their house looks now, but because they love bringing in the story of the piece to their home.

Back in February, I had the opportunity to travel back to Turkey to find some great merchandise for the gallerie. I walk through the shops where they’re carried and become filled with the excitement of knowing that more stories are to come. As I look at each piece, one by one, the producers of the pieces tell me about what I’m looking at, and I absorb it like a sponge. How exciting is it that this art of handcrafted items is still alive and well?

Love From Abrash

I woke-up @ 6 am Sunday morning.  Everyone is still sleeping, even the city.  I am out of town traveling to bring some more beautiful art to Abrash.  Sun rays are beaming in the sky, and I am sipping my tea.  That is how a good day starts…

GrandBazaarOver the last decade of my life I fell in love with one thing I always had an appreciation for and enjoyed throughout my years on this planet; hand-made oriental rugs & interior design. I truly believe “Home is the Reflection of the Soul”.  In today’s society, we each live different levels of stress in our lives.  When one comes home, it is soothing to one’s soul to feel the passion, love, comfort, peacefulness and beauty of life.  A house becomes your home when it is filled with colors & designs that reflects your spirit.  A hand-made rug, whether it is contemporary or traditional can be the art on your floor. Remember, each knot is patiently woven with villagers who painstakingly weave them to make a living.

I feel fortunate to meet those weavers & visit their villages on the Silk Route.  To me, their work resonates love for the dyeing art-form of hand-made rugs.  Believe it or not, I love all of the rugs I bring to my gallery , and if I had a choice I would not sell any of them; I guess that is a committed marriage :)

Happy Valentine’s Day to all who live to love and love to live.

Are You Getting Your Money’s Worth

Oriental rugs are a ‘blind’ item for most people.  Trust in the dealer is the most important factor in your purchase – trust that you are being shown the most beautiful rugs of each type – well made and fairly priced.  Here are some tips on quality…

Folklife Carpets

Enjoy reading below “The Idea Takes Root” by George Jevremovich, owner of Woven Legends.

Abrash is a proud dealer of Woven Legends rugs; Folklife rugs are available at our gallerie.

The Book Of Woven Legends presents an extensive—though far from complete—catalogue of our carpets woven between 1982 to the present, from our pioneering and experimental Azeri carpets in the 80’s to our forays through the years of many village, town and classical traditions. Included are portraits from the field, focused on the people, land, culture and processes that together help describe the revival of one of the world’s oldest arts. In an attempt to bring a sense of coherence to a daunting and little understood art, we also provide the “creation story” (Anatomy Of A Carpet) of a Woven Legends carpet, step by step, from start to finish, from village loom to the living room. Also, a selection of residential, commercial, and public views of interiors and spaces for which a wide variety of Woven Legends carpets were selected or custom designed.

Starting decades before “sustainability” and “green” gained market currency, our mission remains constant: to pursue, experiment and recover the knowledge of traditions that were, after thousands of years of research and development, abandoned, a situation that began with the invention of spinning machines and aniline dyes during the Industrial Revolution—displacing tens of thousands of artisans from the Balkans to Central Asia—and continued into the post-industrial age with its focus on program and predictability: standardized designs, sizes, color-ways, delivery schedules… Looking back to 1979, it was easy to see that all knots were not created equal, that two traditional Turkish, or Persian, or Caucasian rugs—one antique, one modern—might share the same design, size, type of knot and knot-count, but only one was “beautiful”. It didn’t require an expert or trained eye to see the difference; it was obvious. The question was, why? Answers were varied and vague: “antiques are better because they are antiques”; “the art vanished with the tribe”; “give it time and this one will be as beautiful” (a dealer favorite).

Interestingly, it took modern science and research, and a passion for antique Turkish village rugs by a German chemist (Harold Bohmer) for the Dobag project (1981) and their village cooperatives to help undo the damage. Their introduction of natural dyeing, their adherence to using only local hand-spun woolen yarn, and to commissioning designs that were indigenous and still in use in the Ayvacik and Yuntdag areas of western Anatolia, set the stage. An idea took root. Woven Legends’ task was to expand on the natural dye recipes of Dobag, to adhere to its own “only hand-spun wool” rule, and to move to eastern Anatolia, where mountainous terrain, weather and conditions supported—with the assistance of local government—the creation of a cottage industry capable of weaving large sizes in atelier settings, and where it was possible (for a variety of reasons) for us to experiment across a broad range of traditional weave structures and designs. Our goal here—long overdue—is to present a coherent picture of our work and values. We live in a new century where the teachings and work of William Morris have never had greater relevance: “To give people pleasure in the things they perforce make; to give others pleasure in the things they perforce use; that is the great office of decoration.” It is not foolish now to invoke aesthetics as a basis for thinking about the future, any more than it is romantic to say that unbridled industrial development threatens the future of our planet. It is not too late to assert that traditional art, to the degree that it can respond and embrace our common need to find work rewarding, while also allowing us to take pleasure in the beauty of the objects that fill our homes and lives, may be the best option we have in bringing human needs and desires into balance with the rest of the world.