Bit of couture to make the carpet haute

Innovative styles

Bit of couture to make the carpet haute

The little SoHo of New Delhi, Lado Sarai market, boasts of some outstanding artisans in its nooks and corners, who away from the public eye work tirelessly. Embellishing spaces with her contemporary-design carpets is a passion that drives one of them.

 

The 30-year-old Rashi Bajaj is a ‘couture carpet designer’ who recently won the 10th Silver Stevie Award in the Young Female Entrepreneur category in New York.  

Drenched in the rhythm of culture, traditional and skilled weavers from her hometown Bhadohi, a small city near Varanasi, breathe life into carpets and rugs that she gives a spin to with her contemporary designs. Bringing in the element of high fashion, Rashi drew inspiration from her father’s flourishing business in the carpet industry and went a step ahead to give a new form to the ubiquitous item in home decoration for hundreds of years, by starting Carpet Couture in 2009. 

“There’s a shift in the consumer mindset” says Rashi adding “a customer wants to pick everything customised as per his requirements. While there are couture clothes, shoes etc, there was a void in the carpet industry. This is what I wanted to fill,” the carpet designer says while talking about her array of designs.

“Everybody wants a single piece that suits their decor specifically. However beautiful a Kashmiri weave or a Persian carpet be, it doesn’t always fit the bill,” explains Rashi. So what goes into her designs that make her products exclusive?

“Lately, there’s been a rage for the lost weave, a design where a motif is created and artistically erased in parts to give it an antique feel,” reveals the designer. From something as basic as 21 shades of green and red mixed and matched to the ‘T’, her designs also include a range of wall-to-wall carpets studded with Swarovski crystals. Beat that!

Does being a women entrepreneur burden her with added responsibilities? Rashi points out that she wasn’t denied any opportunity because of being a girl. “We are lucky to be born in this era in India where everybody is expected to do something on their own in life. With an encouraging husband and family, things get even easier.” Excited at getting internationally acknowledged for her entrepreneurial skills, she hints at the bigger picture, saying, “I want to put my carpets, at least one each, in every corner of the world.” 

Amen to that!

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