Gray: The Design Magazine for the Pacific NW July 29 2015

Interior Design by Taryn Emmerson.

The Kush rug is a one of a kind Khotan from our Classic Collection.

The modern chair on the magazine cover is by fellow Portlander Ben Klebba of Phloem Studio.


Portland Monthly Magazine June 23 2015

The International Stories Behind the Rugs at Portland's Kush

Rug transport, India style, photographed near Mirzapur.

When an earthquake hit Nepal in April, Kush Rugs felt tremors in Portland. Owners Brian Robins and Rebecca Lurie couldn’t reach Nepali suppliers for days. Finally, e-mails arrived: don’t stop ordering rugs. The Himalayan craftspeople vowed to continue production.

While many Portland businesses rely on global trade, the rug business is peculiarly sensitive to events in places like Nepal, India, Pakistan, and Iran. “Consistency is challenging,” Lurie says. “We do business in countries that are always in the news.”

Every year, Kush—usually represented by Lurie, a former anthropology major with a yen for travel—scouts out rural villages to find rare and high-quality work. “Every country is making great rugs, and every country is making cheap rugs,” Robins says. “We want people to walk in and see rugs they can’t see anywhere else.”

Even absent catastrophe or crisis, the logistical challenges are formidable. A single rug can take up to a year to finish then ship—via every combination of bike, truck, air, and bureaucracy. “Where’s that rug?” Robins recounts. “It’s in customs. Has anybody heard of it again? It’s both a blessing and a curse. We can’t just sit back and say, well, we’ve got our lines, and we’re good.”

Kush also must tune in to local nuances. “If you’re dealing with someone who’s Afghan or Indian versus somebody from Turkey—those are different forms of communication,” says Lurie. “Does ‘yes’ mean ‘yes,’ or does it mean, ‘I’m saying yes, but you know I mean no’?”

The store donated 3 percent of its May sales to Nepali relief efforts, and Lurie plans to return in the fall. “Ordering rugs,” she says, “contributes directly to providing jobs, rebuilding the country, and helping Nepal move forward.”

Forever Cottage: A Design Blog May 15 2015

One of my favorite sources for gorgeous rugs in Portland is
Kush Rugs {205 NW 10th Avenue}.
As you know, a 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck Nepal just
a couple weeks ago.  The loss of life has been staggering.
Kush Rugs made a donation to Oxfam immediately 
after the earthquake but is looking to do something
even more, even bigger.  During the month of May,
Kush will be donating a portion of sales to
the Phoenix Fund for Nepal Relief.
You may or may not know, that Nepal produces
some gorgeous handmade rugs.
So local peeps - if you are considering investing in a gorgeous rug
for a space in your home, please consider visiting Kush Rugs in
the Pearl District!  Your purchase will go a long way towards 
helping the people of Nepal.  
Thanks to Kush Rugs for their generous and thoughtful hearts!

UDO MAG: Georgette Mosley April 06 2015

Thank you to Georgette Mosley for featuring Kush's new Vinyl Rug Collection on her fabulous design site, UDO MAG. Click to read the entire feature.

Gray Magazine Blog: Product of the Day March 10 2015

Luxe Magazine January 24 2015

Kush provided the pop of pink! Click to view more of our wool & silk pink dragon rug.

Interior Design Fall Market November 18 2014

Gray Magazine Blog November 14 2014

Kush in Design Spotter July 01 2014

Spring Rugs
“Blossom” is a beautifully made traditional rug available exclusively from Kush Rugs in Portland, Oregon. It was hand-knotted in India with a wool background and raised silk design. Secondly, “Static” is a more masculine rug that was also hand-knotted in India and available exclusively at Kush.

Dimension: Blossom is photographed 9’1X12’1 and Static 8'X10', but can be ordered i54 sq ft and above.

Rue Magazine October 01 2013

Copy: Kat McEachern, Photography: Brian Robins

Rugs are a central design piece that can be the starting point for building an entire room. Even a neutral colored rug can add to the warmth and comfort of a space, while a dramatic rug can transform it entirely. Whether you are looking for high impact or quiet unity in your rug, Rebecca Lurie and Brian Robins from Kush Rugs can help you select the perfect piece.

Both worked their way up in the rug world, Brian as a rug washer and Rebecca as a ‘flipper/shipper,’ in industry parlance. They “fell in love with the unconventional nature of the rug business, and with the timelessness, permanence, and complex beauty of the product.” We visited their showroom in Portland to learn more.

You both worked your way through the rug industry, what inspired you to start a business together?
Brian: Rebecca has been travelling for nearly half her life. She first left home for a year in West Africa at age 20, and has since visited countless countries on multiple continents over the years. Rebecca’s interest is in culture and religion, and the art forms that serve the purpose of expressing both. Rugs fit naturally into her sense of what’s important and inspiring, and after so many years of negotiating the developing world on her own, the idea to start a business seemed obvious and far preferable to working for someone else. Oh, and she loves math.

Rebecca: Brian loves film and photography. Composition and color plays a large part in both mediums and is applicable to rugs and interior design. When designing rugs he is comfortable reworking classical motifs, but is most energized by riffing off modern design and pop culture. And he hates math…

Brian: We have very different taste and perspectives from one another. Our yin and yang balance out the gallery. If we both like a rug or design, we know it’s a winner!

Your showroom is so open and feels like a luxury bazaar. What was your inspiration?
We looked for a gallery that had a rustic, industrial feel and beautiful windows, and we put in a glass roll up garage door for summer. Rugs are always the center of attention here. It’s a treat dressing up the windows and seeing people press against the glass to see in. Our design concept was to make to space feel approachable. People drop in to say hello and then realize they have been hanging out for an hour. Mission accomplished!

There are so many styles of rugs- how to you define what fits into the “Kush look”?
We divide our rugs into 4 broad categories. Traditional, transitional, modern, and custom. Our focus is on ethically sourced, handmade rugs. They are mostly new, although there are a few vintage and antique beauties that we couldn’t pass up.

To find your handmade rugs, you must travel frequently to some very inspiring locations!
The best work trip, hands down, is Turkey. Istanbul is the most beautiful and romantic city in the world; Anatolia is wild, vast, and ancient, and the coast is pure Mediterranean paradise. Turkish food is unstoppable, the people enchanting, and the weaving tradition is inspired.

And our favorite place to relax? Astoria, Oregon. We live in the greatest state.

Nothing beats being home! Speaking of homes, what tips do you have for someone who is rug shopping- maybe for the first time?
Take time to educate your eye. Visit at least a couple shops so that you can see the many different types of rugs available. You need to learn what moves you, and what works for the space- and then you look for a rug that does both. Start a relationship with a gallery that will allow you take rugs home on a trial basis. Seeing rugs in their intended space as opposed to a gallery setting is illuminating. Like fashion, everyone has a strong opinion about rugs. Ultimately the right rug is an expression of personal style.

Call us: 503.231.0700 or email

Eco and Social Responsibility