Gone are outdated, old, patterned rugs; in are contemporary works of art. Node, the brainchild of illustrator and children’s book author Chris Haughton, now offers fair trade rugs with designs created by artists and designers from around the world.
Node’s latest collection features 18 hand crafted rugs, woven in Nepal, and based on designs by well known illustrators like Lesley Barns, Micah Lidberg and Geoff McFetridge.
Node: a small company with big plans
Irish born Haughton is the well known author of A Bit Lost and Oh No George, with an awarded career in illustration. He first became aware of the possibilities of fair trade when he started working with People Tree, a UK based organisation which pioneers fair trade, sustainable fashion.
People Tree works with Kumbeshwar, one of the founders of Fair Trade Nepal, and it was through them, that Haughton first became aware of the rug weaving industry in the area. Haughton went to see how matters stood on the ground and realised that, “the only thing their rugs fell short in was design,” as he told Digital Arts. “Their designs just weren’t saleable here. I knew loads of designers who would give their right arm to do a rug. I just had to put the two together.”
Put them together he did, along with help from Akshay Sthapit, creator of Harilo.com which basically functions on the same principals as Amazon, but in Nepal, he created Node. He explains the reasoning behind the name on his blog, stating that a ‘node’ is a point on a network. That is exactly what they want Node to be; the vehicle through which great designers and expert craft women meet, with the end result being a hand woven, designer rug that buyers can feel good about purchasing.
The project currently has 18 different designs on offer, of which there are 10 each, available through the Design Museum Shop in London. The rugs retail at £950.00. Should clients wish to design their own rugs the cost would be between £250 and £350 per square meter.
Whilst the price tag is on the heavy side there are a number of advantages in purchasing one of these rugs as opposed to mass manufactured ones:
Because both Node and Kumbeshwar work on fair trade principals workers are paid a living wage and operate in humane conditions. Absolutely no child labour is allowed.
All of the rugs are made of pure Tibetan wool which is then hand spun, dyed and woven, ensuring a unique product of exceptional quality and easy rug maintenance.
The designs used for the patterns are especially crafted by renowned artists and illustrators such as Sanna Annukka, Joe Magee, Segre Seidlitz and Chris Haughton, making each one a veritable, contemporary work of art.
About the Author
Pippa Green is a London based blogger who’s obsessed with having a clean home. In her latest attempt at mastering her domestic environment, she’s been experimenting with steam cleaners and eco friendly detergents.