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From Home Furnishing Business

A Magic Carpet Ride

By Sheila Long O’mara

Area rugs are to a room like jewelry is to a well-put-together outfit. They’re great at pulling other items into a coherent space. Rugs are an anchor for the area. They’re nearly magical in their ability to transform a room.

According to a Home Furnishings Business consumer survey last month, area rugs are gaining in momentum as the go-to accessory for dressing up a space. Sales in the category climbed more than 6.6 percent from 2012 to 2013, and the category is poised to make similar gains this year. No surprise, more than half of the rug purchases— 57.6 percent—were bought for either the living room or den. The bedroom followed at a distant 11.9 percent and the dining room at 8.5 percent.

Shape was a deciding factor for our consumer panel in rug selection. Nearly 73 percent chose rectangular shaped rugs, while at a distant second, 11.8 percent opted for the “other” shape. Beyond that, runners and square rugs were each chosen by 6.8 percent of the sample.

A wide range of sizes were bought by our panel of consumers ranging from the smallest 2x3 to the much larger 12x18 and every size in between. Consumers most often opted for either 5x7 foot rugs (18.6 percent) or 8x10 foot rugs (17 percent).

Nearly 65 percent spent between $100 and $1,499 on their most recent rug purchase. The largest cluster of rug purchases (45.8 percent) fell within the $100 to $399 price range. Much like the rug arena, our consumers bought a broad array of color and style families, but didn’t stray far from the strong neutral family. Neutrals led the color parade with more than 69 percent choosing black, white, beige or the like. Green, a strong player in the upholstery arena, followed with a distant 13.6 percent. Other colors that got a mention, include blue, pink, red and yellow.

Our consumers appear to like to play it safe when it comes to rugs. While the design elements were quite varied, the largest cluster of consumers (28.8 percent) played it safe and bought a solid rug. Florals and geometrics tied at 17 percent; traditional motifs, 13.8 percent; contemporary designs, 10.2 percent; and stripes, 6.8 percent. Zig-zag patterns and animal prints rounded out the balance.

Not surprisingly, most of our consumers (76.3 percent) bought their rug after making their furniture purchase. Only 8.5 percent bought the rug with their furniture purchase.

Our group of shoppers showed a penchant for buying their rugs from mass merchants, like Target or Walmart, (30.5 percent) or home improvement stores, Lowe’s or Home Depot. (25.4 percent). Traditional furniture stores (11.9 percent) ran neck and neck with rug only stores (11.9 percent) and the Internet (11.8 percent) as the channel consumers chose for their rug purchase.

What Retailers Say

Nourison’s Luster Wash CK10

“Because of the beautiful copper color, it works well in many of our contemporary desert living homes. Because of it’s subtle abstract design, it can be mixed with other patterned rugs. It’s also available in other colorways and sizes.” It’s part of the Calvin Klein collection.
Retails at $1,099 for a 5.6’x8’

Carol Bell
Contents Interiors
Tuscon, Ariz.
Retails at $699.99 for an 8x10.

Rizzy’s Napa Merlot

“An overall great value and style. This rug is hand-tufted in a New Zealand wool blend and features a heavy 10 millimeter loop pile.”
Vanessa Hunt
Jerome’s Furniture
San Diego

Company C’s Sheffield Stripes
“Company C is a very good vendor for us, and we do very well with the line. It’s not inexpensive and comes with an MRP so it doesn’t get kicked around for price.”
Retails at $2,055 for an 8x10.

Peggy Burns
Circle Furniture
Acton, Mass.


 

 

What Suppliers Say

 

Surya’s 3300 From the Banshee Collection

This rug offers a soft, plush texture with a lustrous sheen. Hand-tufted in India of 100 percent New Zealand wool with viscos accents, the organic design combines with earthy and deeply saturated hues of copper and slate for a sophisticated style.

Loloi’s Nyla

Nyla is designed and created to look like an antique, hand-made rug. It’s popularity lies in the design, and its affordable, power-loom price. Nyla is also available in a number of different colors.
Kevin O’Brien Tuscan Sun Bu Capel
This award-winning rug has a unique ombré look created with different shading throughout. Its extra-dense construction utilizing cut and look construction and texture from different yarn systems make this one of our best sellers.
Jaipur’s Garden Party from the Blue Collection
A welcoming blue ground offers the blossoming vine a cozy background. The livable design makes Jaipur’s Garden Party a winner among consumers.

Roses Rug from Company C
A whimsical rug with a botanical motif in wine, berry, and purple. The imagery portrays the vibrancy of English roses in full bloom against an evergreen ground. Carefully crafted with mottled green and black yarns the roses are tufted while the background has a loop pile for textural appeal in 100 percent wool.

Revival from Oriental Weavers.

A staple, day-in day-out top seller, the Revival collection meets the huge demand for over-dyeing The collection is made in the U.S., giving retailers a home-spun story to tell consumers.



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