Diamond in the Rough

I do not own this book. I know, I need to, but I don't. Bloggers refer to it a lot. One thing that has always intrigued me about this book is the cover. And that rug.

Bunny Williams, Point of View

I'm naturally drawn to the graphic white and brown, and I've always had a bit of a weakness for the diamond pattern.

Ad, Doris Leslie Blau.

Plus, after all the seagrass and sisal, don't these look cozy? Soft and plush, without being goofy like flotaki?

But I didn't know what they were or from where they came. Enter the wonder of the internet.

These rugs are Moroccan and are created by the Beni Ouarain, a coalition of semi-nomadic tribes hailing from the Mid-Atlas mountains. They tend an ancient breed of small sheep and use their wool to produce these carpets.

This image, and the one above, are Michael Smith for Cindy Crawford in Elle Decor, March, 2006. Note that in the bottom picture, he has layered two different rugs.

The patterns are unique and rarely have a border; those rugs with a border are generally the result of outside influences.

Ad, F J Hakimian.

The pieces are actually not designed as rugs, but rather beds and bed coverings. They are, apparently, quiet pliable.

Again, Smith for Crawford, ED, 3-06.

They have been getting a quite a bit of play in the shelter magazines, as you can see.

Jesse Carrier for Rachael Weisz, Vogue Living, Spring/Summer, 2008. Rugs through Madeline Weinrib at ABC Carpet & Home.

And, as all good things need to be peddled to the masses, there are now look-alikes at William-Sonoma Home and, egads, Pottery Barn.

Williams-Sonoma Home.

If you are interested, there is detailed information on the Blazek web site. To find sources for the rugs, you can Google Moroccan or Beni Ouarain rugs and quite a few sources, including the ones featured in this post, will appear. I certainly don't have anything against WSH or PB, but the real deal is not outrageously expensive. And, no doubt, it would have a deeper soul.