4 essential steps to responsibly sourcing rugs
In the wake of a surge in demand for home items fueled by a pandemic, collaborations and carpet launches have been ubiquitous lately. Furniture company DTC Floyd is latest to jump on the bandwagon, after launching itds first carpet, a wool and cotton design, earlier this month.
Floyd Co-Founder Kyle Hoff, along with Alex O’Dell, explains that there’s a good reason the rug market is thriving: “Rugs are such an essential part of every room in the home, and yet they. are so often an afterthought in the design process. But sourcing a rug isn’t just about aesthetic or size considerations – it also involves looking behind the scenes and checking materials, treatments, and production.
AD PRO turned to a few textile and interior design experts for advice on how to source rugs intelligently. Here are the tips they shared.
Look for the “GoodWeave” labels
In 2014, a alarming study of the FXB Center for Health and Human Rights at Harvard followed cases of forced labor, forced labor, child labor and human trafficking in the Indian carpet industry, including producers who supplied products to some of the largest retailers in the United States. While the US Department of Labor has reported Some progress on this front since then, designers still have to consider the human cost of the rugs they buy.
If you are looking for a rug and want to know if it has been made with ethical working practices, look for the GoodWeave label, which indicates that no child, forced or bonded labor was used in the manufacture of the product.
New York-based interior designer Kati curtis thinks it’s extremely important to know who made the rugs she specifies for the projects, so she does some research firsthand. “I traveled to India to meet the weavers,” she says, adding that these labor issues are not limited to this nation.
Ariel Kaye, Founder and CEO of Parachute Home, says finding a socially responsible producer was a top priority when her company launched a line of rugs in 2019. The brand found it, she says, in an 80-year-old heritage textile manufacturer in Panipat, in India, which provides training for employees. ‘children and employment opportunities for their spouses. “By practicing age-old weaving techniques, they are also fighting the tide of mechanization in the textile industry and preserving knowledge for the next generation of artisans,” Kaye adds.
Arati Rao, founder of the carpet line Tantouvi, says the company Jaipur rugs in India “has set an incredible standard in giving their artisans equity in the process, also involving them in the design and improving the communities in which they work. This is the key to keeping handweaving alive – valuing the artists who bring our ideas to life. “
Rao says it’s often difficult to know what’s really going on behind the scenes if you’re not working with the right people, so it’s best to cut out the middleman. “We don’t work with agents or factories and directly employ a community of weavers and we buy our cotton and wool locally in Rajasthan,” she explains.