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IGotYourRug.com ~ 4153 Virginia Beach Blvd., Virginia Beach, VA ~ 757-486-6600

Friday, May 31, 2013

Decorating with Exotic and Unique Moroccan Rugs

Moroccan Rugs at Mark Gonsenhauser Showroom

Moroccan weaving has been around for centuries and originates as the craft of the Berber tribal people of the Middle and High Atlas and the Plains of Marrakesh.

There are many styles of  Moroccan rugs but in 2013 the style that is making a big splash in home decorating is the shaggy textured wool rugs with geometric patterns. At Mark Gonsenhauser's we have brought in a nice selection of these rugs. Be sure to come into our showroom to see these rugs in person!

Decorating with Moroccan Rugs

Below are some rooms that have been decorated using Moroccan rugs. These are some great examples of how easy it is to blend these unique rugs with any style of furniture. Whether your style is casual, rustic, exotic or eclectic, these Moroccan rugs can create a one-of-a-kind space.

Mark Gonsenhauser's Rug and Carpet Superstore 
4153 Virginia Beach Blvd.
Virginia Beach, VA 23452

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

What is the Light and Dark Side of an Oriental Rug?

A very large rug on the loom; note that weaving is done from bottom to top

In order to understand why there is a light and dark side of an Oriental rug, first you need to learn a little about the parts of a hand knotted rug.
Photo courtesy of rugchick.com

  • The warp threads run lengthwise (or north to south, top to bottom) and make up the fringes of a rug.  
  • The weft threads run across the width of the rug, (or east to west, side to side.)
  • The selvage or edge of the rug is made by wrapping several warp threads at the edge of the rug with yarn to reinforce this part of the rug.
  • The knots which are tied to the warps create the pile or nap of the rug.
Oriental rugs are woven from bottom to top. The weaver ties individual knots to the warp threads (lengthwise threads) and these comprise the pile of the rug. A knot is mostly woven in a downward motion and "opens" down which creates the pile direction. This can vary depending on the loom set up, as sometimes the knots are tied so they open to the left or right. Most rugs have a distinct pile direction that can be felt, as well as seen. If you run your hand on the pile of the rug from fringe to fringe, or diagonally, you will feel that the pile has both a rough and smooth side.

You can usually determine the "dark side" of the rug by standing at the end of the rug and running your hand toward you and the pile will feel smoother. Alternately, the "light side" of a rug will feel rougher when you run your hand on the pile.

The rug's light and dark sides result, in part, from the pile direction, although some Oriental rugs may have more pronounced light and dark sides because of the weaving style and the luster of the fiber.

Pile fibers lay at an angle where they will do one of two things: reflect or absorb light. On the rug's lighter side, light reflects off the fiber's sides, giving the pile a brighter sheen. From the dark side of the rug, your view is the cut tips of the wool which absorb light rather than reflect it, appearing to give the rug a deeper tone.

The photographs below are the same rug under the same lighting.

Light end of an Oriental rug

Dark end of an Oriental rug

Another article you may be interested in:

You can count the knots, although knots don’t count!

Come by our Virginia Beach Rug Store to learn more about Oriental rugs!

Mark Gonsenhauser's Rug and Carpet Superstore 
4153 Virginia Beach Blvd.
Virginia Beach, VA 23452

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Let the floor set a design tone

Ikat Design Area Rug - Siam By Nourison

The area rug can be a room’s focal point, organize furnishings, add warmth and baffle sound.

Botanical rug adds color, becomes a focal pint and adds warmth to your room


Carpet diem! Area rugs are seizing the day when it comes to dialing up personality in a room. And that goes for indoors and outdoors.

From flat weaves to bas relief, which adds sculptural dimension, it’s modern design that especially stands out, in an impressive range of prismatic colors, stylish patterns and tantalizing textures, many of which are obviously informed by fashion. And while some motifs like circles or squares or chevrons may be familiar, even vintage references are re-framed in an unexpected bold palette, scale or placement so that they look fresh.

The area rug long has played a pivotal role in interior design. It can be a focal point, much like a piece of art on the wall. It serves to ground a space, organize furnishings, add warmth and baffle sound.

For some designers, a rug sets the tone for a room, launching its color scheme — even one that’s monochromatic, which is best expressed by nuances with shades and textures.

But placing a rug in a room requires visualization. This is why retailer websites often show how color and pattern look underfoot and totally change the dynamic in a space. New York artist Madeline Weinrib told San Francisco writer Diane Dorrans Saeks that she had to rethink technique when she began to design rugs 12 years ago.

“I trained myself to see from the floor as opposed to the wall and realized that (a rug) had to exist in dialogue with the decor in the room, that it would have furniture placed on it,” says Weinrib, whose textiles and rugs are sold at ABC Carpet and Home and through her new showroom in Manhattan. “In painting, it’s a world of its own. That’s not true for rugs, which are part of the decor and must be functional.”


 Transitional style rug made in Tibet
It’s the distinctive appearance of Tibetan rugs that really jelled in the 1990s and sparked renewed interest in an ancient tradition, especially among those who favor clean design like mid-century modern. The luster of rich wools and dense pile sparked attention, as well as a simplification of patterns that often emphasize geometric elements, such as squares, sometimes punctuated in silk for glossy sheen.

But in recent years, rug design really has exploded. Fashion, interior and lifestyle designers have added cache with collections that have an instant fandom for those who embrace their particular aesthetic. Technology has boosted methodology, allowing the equivalent of performance fabrics as well as digital printing.

Still, as in the past, it’s the materials and weave that enable so much variation. Sheep or goat wool from Iran, Turkey or New Zealand or cotton from India will vary in thickness and pile depending on how the weft threads are woven across the warp or foundation, whether the pile is sheered, tufted or looped. Some wools are more coarse, so the result is more rustic. Wool or cotton flat weaves without pile such

Besides weaves, it’s application of color that lends character. The most coveted antiques are appreciated for their natural dyes, from plants like madder (red), indigo (blue), walnut (brown and gray) and rhubarb (yellow). Today’s fashion-forward hues include deep pinks and raspberries, magenta, tangerine and greens, from kiwi to emerald.

Intentional shading also has added another level of sophistication, with striations that look like worn or wrinkled areas becoming part of the pattern, for example. Another effect called “ombre,” from the French word for “shaded,” features gradations from light to dark, often expressed in a single hue, but the fading effect also can apply to multiple colors. Paint techniques also can be replicated, such as sponged or watercolor prints seen in couture.

Another appealing genre is one that features vintage pieces of traditional Oriental rugs stitched together in a patchwork design, then “overdyed,” usually in rich jewel tones. What’s cool is that the original patterns peek through.

One Turkish-based rug wholesaler, Knotisse, celebrates green by rescuing old kelims from the 1920s to the 1980s, unraveling them piece by piece, then reweaving the yarn in very modern designs and colors. Owner Burak Aydogan calls it “upcycling.”


Over-dyed Patchwork Kilim Area Rug - Re-purposing perfected!

Santa Fe, N.M.-based manufacturer Foreign Accents recycles denim from blue jeans, silk saris and men’s ties, bits of sweaters and even bicycle inner tubes for its Deja New collection.

“The very idea of repurposing is compelling,” says Brian Rojanasumaphong, sales manager and buyer at Chicago retailer Oscar Isberian Rugs. “We live in a time where we’re cognizant of the impact we have on the environment. Anything we can do to reuse and repurpose resonates. When you reference the past there’s an almost spiritual connection.”

And romance. Some manufacturers are recreating vintage with new pieces washed and treated to look worn. The idea is analogous to roughed-up or stonewashed jeans, to instantly age them for a desirable patina.

No surprise then that there’s plenty of inspiration from women’s fashions, from hot colors to patterns.

“We love fashion,” says Chris Chapin, co-founder of the Concord, N.H.-based Company C. “So we often keep an eye on the latest in couture. We don’t recommend designing one’s entire home based on the latest fashion trends, but it is fun to sprinkle into our seasonal colors and designs fabulous influences from the runway.”

Large-scale florals and leafy designs echo the popularity of motifs from nature. Animal prints are especially fetching in fun combos such as azalea and green cheetah (from Company C), or a blue green jaguar from Suzanne Kasler for Safavieh. There are plenty of global and ethnic influences: supersized scrolls and paisleys, fretwork and Greek keys, lattice and Moroccan tile motifs.

But there’s also a practical plus for rugs.

“Rugs add so much to a room’s design,” says Chapin. “One of my favorite (things to do) is to stretch out on our rug after a run. Bare floors would not be as comfortable!”

Source: http://www.miamiherald.com/2012/07/21/v-fullstory/2904059/let-the-floor-set-a-design-tone.html

Mark Gonsenhauser's Rug and Carpet Superstore 
4153 Virginia Beach Blvd.
Virginia Beach, VA 23452

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Trends for Area Rugs for 2012 and Beyond

Mark at Domotex in Germany - the Largest International Rug and Design show

This past January my daughter Lauren, whom we call Lolly, accompanied me to Germany to attend Domotex, the largest International rug and design show. The theme of Domotex 2012 was “Customized Living” and that is really what home d├ęcor is all about.

“The design options are endless - silk or wool, traditional patterns or futuristic modern design, vibrant colours or subtle hues, modern carpets woven to customer specifications or carpets and carpet tiles arrayed in different colour combinations and shapes. It is easier than ever to achieve an individual, stylish effect.” (Quote from Domotex website)

We very much agree with that statement and at Mark Gonsenhauser’s we strive to bring you the latest designs in rugs and carpets, as well as the ability to customize and create what will fit your needs and desires.

We saw some amazing innovations in rug and carpet designs. Below I showcase three new trends that we liked and have brought to our store in 2012.

1- Silk Sari Rugs. Beautiful hand made 100 % silk rugs made from leftover production fabric and recycled silk sari's. No two rugs are alike! 

Beautiful and Bright Hand made 100 % Silk Rug 
made from recycled Silk Sari's

100% Silk Rug made from recycled Silk Sari's

2- Another innovative idea in rugs for 2012 is Over Dyed Rugs. Some of the rugs are vintage or recycled pieces of rugs sewn together. The process involves neutralizing the colors of the original rug, while still maintaining the pattern and design of the rug.  The rugs are then re-dyed with a solid color producing a unique effect.

Over dyed Rugs at Domotex 

3- Ikat Hand Loomed Rugs. Ikat is a style of weaving where a dyeing technique is used to create a pattern. Ikat employs a resist dyeing process similar to tie-dye on either the warp or weft fibers. The fibers are then woven to create a pattern or design.

Ikat Rugs at Domotex

Ikat Rug - Hot trend in rugs for 2012 and beyond! 

After Domotex we traveled to India to buy rugs. This was a very productive trip because David and Lolly learned about the rug buying process as well as the rug making process.

At the Taj Mahal
A rug maker hand serge's the side of a rug
My children passionately offered their opinions on the rugs I purchased and gave me the perspective from their generation. Lolly was even inspired to design her own line of flat weave Dhurrie's exclusive to our store fittingly called “The Lolly Pop Collection.”

Lolly and the "Lolly Pop" Dhurrie collection

"Lolly Pop" Dhurrie Rugs

We also made a visit to the Siddharth Gonsenhauser School where we toured the new second floor they built since my visit last year.

Mark with the kids at the Gonsenhauser sponsored school in Siddharth India

It was an amazing trip and I am excited about bringing to you all the beautiful rugs that I bought for the store! Come in and see us soon!

"I Got Your Rug!"

Mark Gonsenhauser's Rug and Carpet Superstore 
4153 Virginia Beach Blvd.
Virginia Beach, VA 23452

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

What Rug For What Room?

Rug  Size & Room Chart
Beside the obvious questions of color and style to be decided by an individual’s personal taste, to determine what type of rug or what size rug is needed for a given location, you should take several factors into consideration.

Of course, price will play an important role in that decision. Within your budgetary parameters, however, the type of construction and quality you choose will be a key factor in ensuring that you will be happy with your new purchase. Putting a light colored needlepoint runner in a foyer or hallway is not usually recommended. Why? Even top quality needlepoints are not made to stand up to high traffic, especially in entry areas where dirt and salt can damage the rug. Conversely, a beautiful soumak flatweave, which has a much denser construction to resist dirt and traffic, could be perfect for such an application. The needlepoint can be a wonderful addition to a bedroom room, a “barefoot” area, where the soumak with its rougher texture might be less desirable from a comfort standpoint. These are just two examples of how placement of different constructions should be taken into consideration.

Another factor you will certainly want to consider is size. From small scatter rugs to palatial carpets, both the actual room size and the specific decorating scheme are critical in determining the size of the rug best suited to your needs. Dining room rugs need to be sized for the placement of the chairs and the table as well as for the absolute measurements of the room. Take into account how much of the pattern will be hidden or obscured under the table. Obviously, a center medallion design would not be the ideal choice for this purpose.

Living rooms can have a wide array of layouts and elements. Sofas, chairs. occasional tables, and lighting fixtures can be arranged in a single unified configuration or in separate seating or "conversation" areas. In either case, your rugs should play a key role in focussing and enhancing the placement of your other furnishings. In effect, they should function as the "foundation" of your design plan for any area in which they are used. The possibilities of decorating with rugs are endless, and with the Nourison family of collections, you can be assured of the very best in color, design, and quality for every room in your home.

Source: http://nourison.com/main.aspx?FORM=NU3

At Mark Gonsenhauser's we can help you choose the right rug for the right room! 

I Got Your Rug!

Mark Gonsenhauser's Rug and Carpet Superstore 
4153 Virginia Beach Blvd.
Virginia Beach, VA 23452

Website: http://www.igotyourrug.com/ 

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Fresh new look; You'll be 'less bored with your space' with a seasonal change

Karastan Carmel Monte Vista in Crimson

Dear Readers, 

The article below expresses a fundamental decorating concept that many of our customers and designers practice. Changing your decor for the season brings a whole new look and ambiance to your space. Of course one of the easiest ways to do this is with area rugs! 

A great idea for freshening your decor this fall and winter is to incorporate the 2011 color trends of deep shades of purple and eggplant, shades of gray, brown, red and orange. 

Purple Rugs at Mark Gonsenhauser's

 Below is some color inspiration for you from Pantone.

Fall 2011 Home Fashion Color Report from Pantone

Enjoy the article! 

Fresh new look; 
You'll be 'less bored of your space' with a seasonal change

Kelly Olive's decor changes with the weather.

Every winter, the 25-year-old chooses warm shades of purple and grey, infusing it into her bedding and self-made abstract artwork. Come spring, Olive changes it up with colours that scream summer - white, yellow, green and red splashed on the sheets and walls.

Though a biannual update makes perfect sense to Olive, she says her friends think it's "weird." In fact, until recently she thought she was the only one with the odd seasonal habit. But being a confident nonconformist sort, Olive is sticking to her plan.

"When spring is coming and you stop wearing winter jackets, that's the switch time for me," explains Olive. "When it's sunny and nice outside, it should be sunny and nice inside my home. It refreshes it. You get less bored of your space."

Walk into any home decor store right now and it's clear that Olive and others like her are on to something. After a long cold winter, Canadians desperate for a reprieve are refreshing their homes to welcome gentler weather.

In response, stores are bursting with fun bright hues of yellow, green, blue and coral infused in everything from pillows and rugs to furniture and accessories.

Andrea Mills, design spokeswoman for Ikea Canada, likens a spring home makeover to a wardrobe update. Just as people tuck away their winter clothes at the first sign of spring and buy a few new pieces for a different look, she says, the same can be done for the home.

"The change of season, especially into summer, is a time of renewal," says Mills. "The days are longer and lighter. There's just a new feeling in the air and it's a good time for change and to clean up. It's a time when a lot of people start exercising more and going out more and socializing more, so it's nice to celebrate that and reflect that in your home as well."

Refreshing a tired-looking space can be as simple as rearranging furniture or splashing a new coat of paint on baseboards and trim, on one wall or an entire room. Ottawa interior designer Ellen Lee suggests dry earthy neutrals such as pebbles, sand colours and greys since they're lighter and less insulating than darker shades.

"When it's drier it gives an airier feel, so when you're walking through the space it feels very clean, it feels very refreshing but it's not boring," says Lee. "You don't get tired of those colours all that often. With accents you can go for brighter, but only for accents because you don't know if you're going to change your mind later on.

"Particular colours come and go and your tastes change, and if you stay with some of the drier neutral colours for some of your bigger walls and some of your furniture, you'll have a lot more to go on. As the year changes, you can change up the decor a bit more easily."

Pillows, throws and mats also transform a space. Frank Turco, Home Depot's senior manager of trend and design, says the fruits and florals on today's fashion runways have found their way onto drapery, sofas and scatter rugs. For those who can't afford to reupholster, he says slipcovers, throws and pillows in vibrant shades and patterns can make a tired piece of furniture look fresh again.

Texture also plays a role. Toronto interior designer Michelle Mawby says spring means putting away cashmere throws, velvet drapery and shearling rugs and bringing out linen or silk drapery and cotton pillows. Texture makes a home interesting, she explains, but in warmer weather it should be light and airy.

Still, don't think seasonal decorating has to be costly. Start by cleaning the windows to bring in more light, says Lee, or remove one chair to open the space. And if money is tight, head to the hardware store.

"If something is not the right colour, spray paint it," says Mawby.


Do your rooms feel tired? Here are some perk-up tips from the experts:

■ It's a lifestyle thing. Do you use your living room as an entertainment room or is it a room where you watch TV? Frank Turco, of Home Depot, says examining how you use it will better prepare it for the season. He says a casual room calls for seagrass or jute area rug on the floor, natural wood throughout, an open and airy feel and white and natural fabrics throughout, while a formal room begs for more tailored or sophisticated accents.

■ Make it feel good. If yellow is your favourite colour, paint or accessorize in yellow or invest in picture frames or artwork that have yellow in them. Says Turco

■ Look for bargains all year long. Think of more than the designer stores. Check out the mall's home decor stores for inexpensive items and then collect them over time.

Says Toronto interior designer Michelle Mawby, "For $250, you can probably bring in a lot of nice items if you searched in the right places."


Mark Gonsenhauser's Rug and Carpet Superstore 
4153 Virginia Beach Blvd.
Virginia Beach, VA 23452

Website: http://www.IGotYourRug.com/ 

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Pull the rug out ... and repair it

By Krys Stefansky
The Virginian-Pilot
July 31, 2011

Sometimes magic carpet rides fall to earth. Beautiful, patterned Oriental rugs, even expensive, high-quality ones from the far reaches of the globe, have accidents.

Bound edges come undone from wear or mishap. Furniture and foot traffic wear down their pile.

Fringe gets caught in doors, tangled in vacuum cleaners, gnawed by four-legged friends.
No matter how painstakingly they are made – by villages or nomads, on looms of wood or metal, knotted in the Persian style or Turkish, hand tufted or machine-made – eventually, they are dirtied by shoes, spilled on by partygoers, spit up on by crawling babies, tinkled on … and worse … by naughty pets.

Rugs with spots and rips or entire missing chunks make their way to rug repair rooms, if they’re lucky.

There, attention and mending makes them presentable again. Their once-dilapidated state stops being an embarrassment to their owners. Lovingly restored, they return to full glory.
But a good transformation doesn’t always happen without some homework.

Choose a rug restorer with care; No. 1 is the shop’s reputation. No.  2 is to ask and decide whether they really sound knowledgeable. No.  3 is to ask to see other repairs they have done. There are a lot of companies that do the wrong things.

The workrooms at Mark Gonsenhauser’s Rug & Carpet Superstore in Virginia Beach stay busy.
“When a rug comes in for cleaning and is damaged as well,” Gonsenhauser said, turning to a computer in his showroom, “we begin here.”

A menu of services offers spruce-ups like deodorizing, moth-proofing, mildew treatments, urine removal, color touch-ups, hand-serging, patching, turning fringe under. The list goes on and on.
“This is America,” Gonsenhauser said, joking. “You can have what you want.”

Most often, Oriental rugs are re-fringed, rebound, straightened, rewoven or cleaned, he said. Customers looking to protect their original investment often say, “Do whatever it is that you need to do.”
Back in the 1970s, Gonsenhauser, who learned the rug business from his father, studied the art of rug repair in Iran.

Owning a rug that looks a bit disheveled doesn’t necessarily mean it’s been abused.
The finest and best rugs will eventually show wear, he said. The sides of an Oriental rug – the bound edges, or selvages, that act like bumpers on cars – come undone or wear thin with time. If the selvage damage gets bad and eats into warp and weft (the threads that form the rug’s canvas backing), the patterned edges of the rug itself might need reweaving and re-piling. At the ends of the rug, fringe wears off and, if left unattended, so do the warp threads of the rug itself.
“In our business, it’s a stitch in time saves nine,” Gonsenhauser said. “You have to catch the damage before it gets worse.”

Taking action sooner rather than later is advice common to the business.

To make repairs to a rug’s pile, Gonsenhauser’s rug restorers use wool imported from India, Nepal or England and wools that are semi-worsted, hand-spun and machine-spun. The options allow restorers to capture subtleties in color and thickness.

“This is the heart of our repairing,” he said, touching hanks of different kinds of wool hanging from racks. “You’ve got to have the wool.”

Gonsenhauser also keeps a stack of salvaged pieces of old rugs so that, rather than reweaving, which can become expensive, patches can be fashioned.

Upstairs in his repair shop, an antique, 150-year-old Persian Hamadan colored with vegetable dyes was recently restored down to the warp and weft threads, which were rewoven before carefully selected strands of wool in varying shades were knotted, two strands at a time, into the canvas to re-pile the rug.

Typically, repair work is hardly more modern than the tools and techniques originally used to make the rug.

In this case, the area being worked on lay over a section of pipe. Beeswax lubricated the curved needles or hooks going through the tight canvas. Knots were tied by hand. Simple pairs of scissors snipped the wool to the right height.

Success or failure lies in the hands of the person doing the repair.

“To do it right, you’ve got to have a sense of mix and match and of how to monkey around a little bit to get the wool right, the color right, the knots right. To be a good restorer, you have to be in tune with the rug,” Gonsenhauser said. “You’re always learning another trick. It’s ultimately in the eye and hands. Anybody can make wine, but certain people make great wines. It’s the same thing here.”

The cost of minor repairs can be small compared to the original cost of a rug.

Gonsenhauser pulled a machine-made Karastan out of a storage bin. A 1-inch-diameter hole had to be rewoven. It would cost the owner $120 to re-pile the spot and $99 to clean the 6-by-9-foot Karastan, a small investment for a rug that once sold for $1,800.

Some damage can’t be pinned on a single incident. It can come from a lack of regular care and can be prevented at home.

People think rugs wear out from frequent walking on them.
“In reality what goes wrong is that sand gets into the pile and acts as an emery board, cutting off the wool,” Gonsenhauser said.

He recommends that, besides regular vacuuming, every six months or so rug owners employ a simple trick. Flip the rug and vacuum the back. Dust and sand will fall out onto the floor, where it can be swept up and the rug’s pile freed of abrading debris.

Mark Gonsenhauser's Rug and Carpet Superstore 
4153 Virginia Beach Blvd.
Virginia Beach, VA 23452

Website: http://www.igotyourrug.com/ 

Proudly providing you Professional, Expert Rug Repair and Restoration for the Hampton Roads cities of Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Chesapeake, Portsmouth, Suffolk, Hampton, Newport News. Northeastern North Carolina and the Eastern shore.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

The Brussels Flower Carpet

At Mark Gonsenhauser's Rug and Carpet Superstore we sell some very impressive rugs, but nothing like this!

Every year since 1971 the city of Brussels Belgium creates a beautiful carpet in the main square made entirely of flowers. The colors and patterns are just stunning!   

From the website:
"The actual making of the Carpet is based on a plan worked out in advance, consisting of several stages. Everything starts, often a year in advance, with projects and scale models, illustrating a commissioned theme (such as the commemoration of great events, or the arms and shield of a town, and sometimes the proposals of local horticultural associations). "

Here are some photo's of past "Carpets."

Come visit our 20,000 square foot showroom in the heart of Virginia BeachVA. No matter what your style is…….

"I Got Your Rug!"

Mark Gonsenhauser's Rug and Carpet Superstore
4153 Virginia Beach Blvd.
Virginia Beach, VA 23452

Website: http://www.igotyourrug.com/

Proudly providing you Beautiful Rugs for the Hampton Roads cities of Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Chesapeake, Portsmouth, Suffolk, Hampton, Newport News. Northeast North Carolina and the Eastern Shore of VA.