When Kimpton opened its first boutique hotel in Toronto last month, its many interior treasures included 21 delightfully artisanal handloomed rugs by Creative Matters. We were proud to be included among the local designers contributing their talent.
We created the design in our Toronto studio then accompanied it to India where it was carefully made into 21 rugs on equipment that looks hundreds of years old. This video clip shows the time-tested, handloom flatweave tradition involved in the construction of these rugs.
Handloomed rugs are known for their durability and versatility. Because they are tightly woven in the flatweave method, the pattern is virtually the same on both sides, often making them reversible. In this situation however, we put latex on the back to give the rug more rigidity.
Although the method of production dates back centuries in India, the design we created for Kimpton is a very contemporary twist on plaid. Interiors firm Mason Studio were initially inspired by a sample project manager Ana Cunningham showed them from one of our residential projects (see below). They liked how the rug was flat yet textural at the same time. They also appreciated the multi-tonal fringe.
Because plaid designs are not widely used in this particular style of carpet making, designer Anna Panosyan create a detailed threading diagram to show where each colour thread should go for the warp and the weft. Then, because the smooth colour transition was so integral to the desired look and texture, Anna and designer Sandra Ciganic-McKinney travelled to the mill in India to help perfect the set up of the loom. They explained the intricacies of the design and the crafts people made the necessary technical adjustments.
Note below how we achieved subtle colour transitions in both the warp and the weft threads. The effect is basketweave rather than stripes.
Mason Studio selected this style of rug so it would add to the residential feel they were creating inside the suites. Woven using visually rich 100% wool, when set in a space with a lot of solid colours, the flatweave elevates the room by adding texture.
The Kimpton Saint George handloomed flatweaves effortlessly complement the suites' interiors but should a guest dwell for a moment on the provenance of the rug, it is doubtful they will realize just how impeccably crafted they are.