Summer and Stripes

black and white striped dhurrie rug over sisal in a hallwayIs it reasonable to think that my rugs could, and should, be seasonal?

It’s hot and humid outside and my beloved Oriental carpets are feeling a little heavy. I do have a lot of them — the joke around here is that we live at “rug mart.” So, along with my reaction to what our pal Nancy of Silver Magpies recently defined in a comment as my post-moving “clutteritis,” I appear to be developing a taste for summer rugs, which explains why striped, flat-woven dhurries have been looking so cool and attractive to me.

This latest syndrome began the other day in our guest room where I parked the indestructible fuchsia Chinese Deco carpet purchased for my single-girl bedroom 25 years ago. Our extra bedroom is small and it would look lighter and fresher with striped cotton rugs on the floor. Back in the 19th century – when people could afford two whole-house looks per year — staff would have rolled up the wool rugs in May and put the cotton floor coverings in place until the end of September. What a lovely fantasy. Meanwhile, I went to my files to see what would be manageable in a strictly DIY XXI-century home.

It’s common to see striped cotton rugs set over sisal to introduce pattern, since the natural fiber helps keep the lighter weight textile in place. A black-and-white striped rug looks terrific in the great hall of this rural Alabama plantation house [top] where designer Betsy Brown used this favorite high contrast combo to tweak up a super-neutral space.

orange and white striped dhurrie dining room rugIn sharp contrast, an orange and white striped dining room rug was cleverly married into a fun, paintbox-color scheme by New York designer Todd Klein. It took a minute to focus on something other than the rug of the star pendant light but when I did I thought “how smart to work the stripes into a genuine play of color that bounces between the rug and the blue, green, red and yellow textiles used for chair and sofa cushions.

It’s difficult to discuss flat-woven rugs without mentioning Annie Selke, the reigning home textile force behind Dash & Albert and Pine Cone Hill. The Dash rugs are becoming iconic American decorating pieces and not just because they’re affordable and available.

two-tone blue striped polypropylene dhurrie style rugThe rug below home-style editor Newell Turner’s dining room table looks like a dead ringer for D&A’s two-tone, indoor-outdoor (and very practical polypropylene) Side Bar rug.

royal blue and white striped living room rugAnother Selke woven appears in a mixed blue room that combines turquoise and royal shades opposite classic brown. With so many possibilities, perhaps it isn’t far-fetched to think about a future approach to more seasonal decorating.

(Source: House Beautiful, Better Homes & Gardens)

Our resident rug maven Jane T also has written authoritatively about dhurries, stripes and cotton rugs here.

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7 Responses to “Summer and Stripes”

  1. SilverMagpies August 7, 2011 at 10:50 pm #

    Hello Jane –

    I’m so proud to have coined a new term! :) I hope you are getting through the moving process.

    I’m all for summer rugs…makes the house fresh. I remember 2 sets of slipcovers, winter and summer, in my mother’s house. Sigh, one day…

  2. Persian carpet August 8, 2011 at 8:13 am #

    I’m sure a rug can be seasonal especially because the carpets from these pictures can’t keep you warm in the winter but are very comfortable in the summer. A persian carpet for example is perfect for winter but not so recommended during the summer. So you’re right about carpets being seasonal.

  3. shelia August 8, 2011 at 12:08 pm #

    Hi Jane! Oh, you’ve picked some lovely snaps! Love rugs and I agree with the others that rugs can be seasonal. Hope your move is going well.
    Thanks for popping in to see me and I had never thought of a disguised gadget. Hmmm….maybe an idea for the next party! :)
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

  4. Jordan@the2seasons August 9, 2011 at 8:31 am #

    I enjoyed seeing the rug pictures. This is helping me figure out what would work in my house!

  5. Jess August 9, 2011 at 5:14 pm #

    Hi Jane,
    Thanks for the kind words! We do our best to keep floors happy.

    Jess from Dash & Albert

  6. RHome410 August 9, 2011 at 10:14 pm #

    I definitely need more rugs…Like some at all! These look fun, and it’d be a great lift to change them seasonally, I’d think.

  7. Jane F @ Atticmag August 15, 2011 at 7:27 pm #

    Hey Jess,

    You folks do a great job. I hope to eventually be seeing more of you during the summer in my house! Jane

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