Early last year, the ever creative team at Sera Architects approached us to collaborate on common area rugs for their Saltwood North project in Portland's vital Slabtown area (not far from our soon to be new home!)
From the initial, wholly creative brainstorming meetings to the nitty gritty science of color and construction selection, rug development is a complex story. It's like a young, idealistic friendship that, over the course of a lifetime, grows into a solid and enduring camaraderie.
Inspired by the warm geometry of Swedish design and textiles, while ever committed to the earthy tones of our fair city, we turned to two rustic yet flexible productions in India to create these completely custom designs.
The interplay between rug design and rug construction can not be overstated. Over the years we have expanded our capabilities throughout the South Asian weaving belt to allow us to specify just the right weave and materials for every project that crosses our threshold. For Saltwood North, we needed durability to withstand the traffic of a commercial space, and a roughhewn knotting style to ground the simple geometric designs. We decided to work with one of our more far flung producers in the India. Incidentally, the place where we met this little angel...
It took a lot of meetings and design work and a round or two of samples, but we couldn't be more impressed with the final product. We hope you agree, this is an installation to write home about.
So, you’ve heard that we’re moving and changing our business model. But you have questions! Here’s the rub:
We are in the thick of the buildout of our new space: a big, empty warehouse at 1826 NW 18th just two blocks from the old Bedford Brown, 1 block from Globe, near Kravet and Linde. We will have off street parking and almost 6000 square feet to play. It’s not a lot to look at yet but we’re working hard to make it as beautiful as can be, which these days especially, takes a little time. We are still operating in our same space in the Pearl for now, literally bursting at the seams. Our hope is to move in January. Please cross all your fingers for us!
Owner Rebecca & brand ambassador Tommy checking out the progress at new Kush!
As you may know, we are evolving to a trade only model. Over the years we’ve been working more and more with interior designers and architects, and the pandemic has only hastened that shift. I hesitate to use the word pivot-- it’s been such a pandemic buzzword it almost makes me cringe, so evolve is my word of choice here. We are evolving. We have evolved.
Trade clients- you can expect the same dedication to service, quality, and integrity you’ve come to expect over the years. Our new model will allow us to protect your business, expand our private label designs, refine our wholesale programs, and develop our Designer Reserve collections. Stay tuned for more on this.
Offering tailored custom work for residential and commercial projects takes time and focus, and is what we love to do. We will be working diligently with our producers to ensure your custom concepts exceed your expectations. But you also need stock, and in our new space our stacks will have even more room to grow and shine.
While we are still in our Pearl District space we will continue to service retail clients. Our shift to the trade-only model will commence when we move.
Thank you for your ongoing support over the last 16 years, and for allowing us to provide you with solutions for even the most challenging applications. We appreciate you.
Although it has not been widely covered, Nepal has been struggling under a severe Covid surge . One of the poorest countries in the world, Nepal has little resources to provide for the population effected by this crisis, and so smaller groups are stepping up to do what they can.
Weaving Dreams , a grassroots organization based in Kathmandu, has worked for several years to assist the weaving community with essentials such as childcare, education, sanitation, and, since the onset of the pandemic, Covid 19 relief. In our ongoing effort to lift our producers and their communities, Portland based Kush Rugs began supporting them with monthly contributions in March of 2021 .
To date, the team at Weaving Dreams has distributed rice, lentils, PPP, cooking oil, and access to hand-washing facilities to many weavers and their families. They need our help to continue this important work.
Here's the Gofund Me link. Let's make a positive contribution together!
Azer was inspired by an antique kilim, which we translated into a knotted rug construction. Woven in Nepal, the design may be specified in custom colors and sizes. Interior design by Vida Design.
Even after 15 years, we still get excited seeing our work recognized in print. Here's our mid-century modern rug titled "Koopa Disco" in Rug Insider Magazine. As we're fond of saying, "Thanks for the rug love!
Interior design by JHL Design featuring our Eavan traditional rug.
By now you’ve heard about the devastating surge in Covid cases in India, as well as the struggle people are having getting the care they need to survive the crisis. India is not only the source of our most important productions, it is also home to many of our dearest colleagues and friends and we feel called to help however we can.
We’ve donated to Ketto who is working to procure oxygen concentrators in the Mumbai area. Here are a handful of other places you can go to help.
A fund-raising platform in Mumbai, a hot spot of the country’s latest Covid outbreak, Ketto is shepherding a campaign by hundreds of entrepreneurs to purchase 3,000 oxygen concentrators. (The organizers are tweeting live updates.)
The Indian Red Cross
India’s branch of the international humanitarian aid organization is providing ambulance transportation and oxygen in hard-hit cities such as Delhi and Mumbai, and helping to administer vaccine doses. Volunteers are handing out masks, food and hygiene supplies in both rural and urban areas. Donate here.
The India-based disaster relief agency is supplying staple foods such as rice, lentils, sugar and salt to vulnerable communities including migrant laborers, front-line workers and the elderly. Donate here.
In addition to distributing protective equipment at health facilities, the nonprofit says it intends to make direct cash transfers to the most vulnerable households. Donate here.
Youth Feed India and Helping Hands Charitable Trust
These groups are delivering ration kits to vulnerable residents of Mumbai. Each kit includes staples like rice and dal, and feeds a family of four for 15 days. Donate here in a variety of ways, including through Google Pay. Thank you for your support, Team Kush
In the pacific NW, we're known for towering, majestic trees. Our Woody design was based off a large tree ring and is shown here in our tufted quality. It's playful and a little quirky, just like us Portlanders.
Peruse Woody and other tree inspired rugs here. If you like adventurous rugs, check out our Pop Art designs.
Team Kush is excited about our latest and greatest Fusion rugs. Check out the different designs and colors here.
Rebecca shined on Ann Wordsmiths podcast, All Shine No Flash. Learn more about Rebecca, the business of Kush, and the relationships that tie it all together.
Thank you Ann for hosting Rebecca and providing a platform that allows small business owners to learn from one another.