Issue Date: 2017 APRIL, Posted On: 4/15/2017

04142017 Exclusive Review: Rugs at the Hot Architectural Digest Design Show, Part 1
By Lisa Vincenti


NEW YORK -- From established purveyors of fine area rugs to hip Brooklyn-based upstarts, the annual Architectural Digest Design Show, held last month at Piers 92 and 94 in the Big Apple, presented a snapshot of some of the biggest trends in the luxury area rug market.

The 16th edition of the fair reached an all-time high of more than 40,000 attendees and recorded a 15 percent increase in trade over 2015, according to the show's organizer. More than 400 luxury design brands exhibited this year, including 20-plus area rug purveyors.

Established upscale brands Classic Rug Collection, Creative Touch, French Accents, Jan Kath, Marc Phillips, Nasiri, New England Collection, Nourison, Pasargad, Orley Shabahang, Tibet Home, Tibetano, Woven Concepts and Woven Legends, showcased their weaving acumen with designs meant to capture the designer's eye. They brought with them a range of styles but modernist-inflected flatweaves proved a favorite among the top area rug makers, as were rich, color drenched designs.

Also at the show were young, contemporary brands such as Bole Road Textiles, Castelluxe, Eskayel, Inigo Elizalde Rugs, Kinder Modern, Nordic Knots and Tantuvi. These upstarts provided an alternate take on designs for the floor so make sure to read about them in Part 2 of our exclusive preview by clicking here.


Made in India, the third collection of Gee's Bend Quilt rugs by Classic Rug Collection, features a more affordable price point. Pictured, "Wild Goose Chase" by Annie Bendolph, hand tufted of New Zealand wool.

Classic Rug Collection returns to the Architectural Digest Design Show in 2017 after a long break to showcase its third collection of Gee's Bend Quilt rugs (read full story). "For this collection, I am interested in higher-end stores. I am here to get exposure for the new collection and to meet with companies that want to partner with me, said Barbara Barran, founder of the New York showroom.

"The opening price point for an area rug is $1,500 and a 6x9 hand knotted is $4,600 -- this is a very different price point for me. I want the Gee's Bend rugs to be accessible for all people."

Barbara Barran of the Classic Rug Collection returns to the Architectural Digest Design Show.

Creative Touch returns to the AD Design Show showcasing rugs with blues and pinks. Shown, is a handmade, one of a kind design from the Modern Wool Silk collection.

Creative Touch returns to the AD Design Show showcasing its new Benson-Cobb collection (one of which sold on the first day of the show) and a range of lustrous new rugs. "Shoppers love anything silk because of the sheen," said Baki Ildiz, general manager at Creative Touch. "Also they love blues and pinks more than neutrals."

"The AD Show has been very good. I am getting a lot more business. This is a boutique show so I am meeting with local people."

Creative Touch's Baki Ildiz was happy with the response from shoppers of the AD Design Show. 

French Accents displayed modern and classic rugs side by side to showcase their complementary nature. Pictured, on left, a wool and silk Art Deco design (NA319) from its Modern collection.

French Accents Rugs presented a wide variety of styles for shoppers, including styles from its popular Modern, Retro Classics, Ouskhaks, and debuting Scandinavian collection.
The new Scandinavian-inspired range of flatweaves is made in China of wool and silk.
"Right now Scandinavian is a good complement to the Mid-century look being offered by retailers," said FAR's Danny Shafian.

"At AD Home you don't do business, its more about branding, and it also is a test market for new designs."

French Accents Rugs' Danny Shafiian (left) and Aaron Tousi meet with boutique shoppers at the Architectural Digest Design Show.

Rich, warm colors are featured in Jan Kath's latest Erased Heritage designs displayed at the Arch Digest Design Show.

Jan Kath Designs showcases its latest introductions to the company's popular Erased Heritage collection. The new designs, made in India and Turkey, are crafted of wool and silk and feature a copper binding. Also getting its first public airing is a new generation of designs being added to Boro -- a collection launched about a decade ago. "The new designs are more developed from the original, as are the weaving techniques which are more complex today," said Kyle Clarkson partner at the NYC showroom Kyle & Kath.

Kyle Clarkson, partner at NY showroom Kyle & Kath, introduces shoppers to the cutting-edge designs of the German area rug studio.

Marc Phillips highlights a Swedish-styled rug, made of wool with a touch of viscose, at the AD Design Show.

"We've seen some good people," said Marc Partial, co-owner of Marc Phillips Decorative Rugs.
Popular at the Architectural Digest Design Show were Marc Phillips' new collection of indoor-outdoor rugs handwoven of olefin in India and the company's eye-catching Moroccan-style all wool hand-knotted plush high-low designs.

Marc Partial, co-owner of Marc Phillips Decorative Rugs, with colleague Justin Goodall introduces Arch Digest Design shoppers to its outdoor designs and new Scandi looks.

Nasiri brings its Mid-century modern recreations to the Architectural Digest Design Show. Pictured, a detail of the collection's latest addition.

New York-based Nasiri brings its Mid-century Modern recreations to the Arch Digest Design Show. The flatweaves, available in any size and texture, are sourced from carpets from the 1920s-1950s. "These Mid-century Modern rugs are our best-selling rugs," said Nader Nasiri. "We have done this show six years in a row and we have to come. We connect with our current customers and meet new ones."

From left, Nader Nasiri, May Patel and Nicole Friedman of Nasiri pose in front of a new Mid-century Modern flatweave.


The New England Collection debuts fresh graphic modern designs in its American Hooked collection, as well as its just-released Scandi collection of Scandinavian-inspired designs.
At the AD Design Show, the New England Collection gives itsself a modernized look with the introduction of several new modernist inspired designs being added to its American Hooked rugs.

It also developed a new Scandi collection of some 50 designs, inspired by Scandinavian styling, made of wool but improved with silk.
"We are moving toward more modern graphic styles with the latest designs," said Sam Heidari, with NEC.
The New England Collection's Sam Heidari and Renata Stredl-Fishman introduce shoppers to the company's latest modern looks.

Nourison makes a vibrant statement at the Architectural Digest Design Show with the Prismatic collection design PRS08.

"The audience here is looking for higher-end quality, so we featured our higher-end area rugs, broadlooms and also accessories," said Nourison's Giovanni Marra. "Based on the number of appointments we are expecting the same business as 2016. This is a smaller show for us but it does feed business to our NY showroom." The company showcased two full-size vibrant Prismatic collection area rugs, as well as the high-end power-loomed rugs from Twilight; new styles added to its hand-knotted Aldorra collection; and a Nourison best-selling hair-on-hide rug called Prairie from the Calvin Klein collection.

Nourison's Giovanni Marra mans the Nourison booth alongside the company's Sam Azhadi and Kristina Ilkowski at the AD Design Show. 


From left, Ellen Baker of Elle Baker Interiors and Mary Craig of Fair Coast Development take a break with Pasargad's Edward Verdiev at the AD Design Show.

Pasargad managed to snag a spot at the hot AD Design Show by showcasing its growing assortment of home furnishings, displaying its area rugs underfoot (read full story). Pasargad has been growing its furniture line, which it introduced at NY Now in 2015 (read full story). The stand at the AD show included its upholstered Victoria sofa, pictured above, accent seating and tables, and storage units.


Orley Shabahang features Gusto Ahi in blue from the company's second artist collection by Antonia Guzman at the Architectural Digest Design Show.

Orley Shabahang features a range of looks at the Architectural Digest Design Show. Two designs from the company's abstract Guzman collection created in collaboration from Argentine artist Antonia Guzman were on display. "This is our second generation collection with her," said Sheeva Shabahang. "It is more abstract than the first and it was difficult to get the fading effects of the brush stroke."
The company also introduced its new Maps collection, based on antique city maps. "So much of what we do is pattern or abstract so we wanted something for the person that really wants a literal statement piece," said Chirs Lynch, director of the NY showroom. "The Arrch Digest show seems like a very good show and the quality of booth vendors is great, people are creating wonderful looks."

Sheeva Shabahang and Chirs Lynch of New York City's Orley Shabahang rug gallery meet and greet shoppers of the AD Design Show.

Tibetano showcases a modernist inflected area rug at the AD Design Show called Cracks, made in Italy with a unique yarn system that pulls out loops.

Tibetano presents a range of contemporary designs at the AD Design Show. Among the attention-grabbers is a flat-woven modern design called Cracks made in Italy; Chain, a graphic link design, and the abstract Glamour both of wool and silk from the Tibetan Rug collection.
The New York showroom also debuted samples of its new abstract designs done in collaboration with from a Toronto studio Crushwrks. "Opening day was super busy and we made contact with many designers and architects," said Tibetano's Shahram Nazar. "The link design has done really well but texture is really big too, people are gravitating to it."
Tibetano's Shahram Nazar redesigned the company booth for AD Design show.


 Warp & Weft introduces its first flatweaves from India with the Mid-century collection of refreshed classics at the Architectural Digest show.
At its second consecutive year at the Arch Digest Design Show, Warp & Weft focused on luxury materials, texture and style. "We are constantly reinventing ourselves," said owner Michael Mandapati of his new Mid-century flatweave collection -- the company's first flatweaves made in India. The crisp, structured designs bring a 21st century aesthetic to the mid-century classics, which were looser and more organic in their original iterations. 
"Last year was our first year and we met a lot of designers and end-customers here. We had a great response and expect the same this year," Mandapati added, noting, the AD Show for us is about branding and showcasing our new products. "The Midcentury collection is mostly original designs, but we took them to the next level with the texture and quality. These are timeless designs and they have been very well received. We took old designs and gave them new life."

Michael Mandapati of Warp & Weft shows off the Angles rug in brown which is made in India and offered in three different weaves. 


The Cooper Vega wool and natural silk rug by Woven Concepts is styled with an SC16 credenza by DePadova of Milan.

Woven Concepts teamed up with high end Italian furniture brand DePadova to share a booth at the Arch Digest Design Show. The sleek Milanese furnishings complement the rugs in aesthetic. A highlight was Cooper Vega, made in India of wool and natural silk, $117 per sq. ft.

"2016 was a good year for us," said Halleh Hakimian of Woven Concepts, adding that the AD show was very active on the day RugNews.com visited. On display were new samples of the made-to-order LaRuzzko flatwoven suede rug collection, and the company's most popular Odyssey collection design Aldrin, in Carina.

Halleh Hakimian of Woven Concept had a busy opening day at the Arch Digest fair.


Based on an Oushak recreated for The Met in New York, this version, also created by Syrian refuges in the Woven Legends ANKA project, takes center stage at the Arch Digest Design Show.

Philadelphia-based Woven Legends returned to the Arch Digest Design Show with showstopper pieces, including an Art Deco Axminster border design and a reproduction of a rug Woven Legends created for the Metropolitan Museum of Art, an Oushak weave with cotton weft. "The original was made for a rug collector in the 19th century and is in The Met's collection. We were commissioned to reproduce the design for the Worsham-Rockefeller Dressing Room at The Met, which opened  in 2015. The rug was woven by Syrian women refugees trained in the ANKA project, a Woven Legends initiative," said Neslihan Jevremovic, principal, Woven Legends.

Neslihan Jevremovic, center, of Woven Legends poses with Lea Cohen of Verdant Building Solutions (left) and Henni Torkan of T.A.I. Designs, both of Long Island, N.Y.
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