Textile Art - A Brief Overview
When you find the rug of your dreams, it can be a nightmare to even think about putting furniture on it. Countless carpets are covered up by long sofas and bedroom sets, leaving their captivating beauty a secret. But, rugs don't have to stay on the floor. More and more designers are moving these woven masterpieces from underfoot to eye-level, and redefining the realm of wall art. "I love rugs on the wall," an interior designer told me recently at an industry event. "If you have something that beautiful, you should show it off!"
The designer was commenting on the hanging of a bold shag Moroccan rug on the wall of a luxury apartment entry. The unexpected adornment worked, because the pile and color of the rug brought a tangible element to the space that was both modern and inviting. Of course, hanging rugs on the wall isn't a groundbreaking trend. Textile art is a design element with roots as deep as civilization, hung in caves, courts and castles as an artform all to themselves. But the trend has evolved away from the display of intricate, detailed portrait pieces to showcase the texture and patterns of rugs. The look is most traditionally done with Suzani embroideries, decorative pieces and smaller antique rugs.
But with the help of simple DIY techniques, larger rugs with more character can become vibrant wall hangings. Casting, for example, involves sewing a strip of heavy cotton or linen onto the back of a rug. A metal bar slightly shorter than the rug is inserted into the casting, acting like a curtain rod that balances the rug on the wall with angled screws or nails. Another method is mounting a rug on a linen covered frame, effectively turning the rug into art itself. Bringing rugs beyond the floor isn't just an aesthetic trick. It can also extend the life of a cherished, but well worn piece. And, it can be an interior design life saver by adding surprising style to an unusual wall space.