LOS ANGELES – For Emmy Ellison, every rug in her curated line has its own story to tell. And the designer’s newly launched e=-ommerce site is an open book to those tales.
DeMaroc Home opened its virtual doors in February with an assortment of 250-plus styles – all of them one-of-a-kind, hand-made by artisans and vintage – comprised mainly of rugs but also poufs and pillows crafted from antique rug remnants.
Rather than buy her rugs in bulk, Ellison hand selects each piece during her numerous procurement trips to Morocco.
“I’ll got through 500 rugs and select maybe 70 at a time,” she said. “I know right away when I see something I want. And I get emotional about these rugs because I put a lot of time and effort into curating my line. It’s not easy. I can’t imagine not having these pieces in my life now. I’m very passionate about this.”
The vast majority – as much as 95% of her mix – is made of 100% wool. The balance is made of either goat hair or recycled fabrics from discarded clothing.
The journey, from when she first discovered these rugs to this year when she opened her business, has been rewarding.
“I’ve learned a lot about the stories behind these rugs. There are many small indicators that tell so much,” she said. “I learned that these vintage rugs were made by people working in their homes, using wooden looms. Today, Moroccan rugs are made on metal looms, thanks to modern technology.
“I also discovered there are winter sizes and summer sizes with different thicknesses, for use in the different times of year. Colors like cobalt also indicate where a rug might have been made because of the available resources. It’s all very interesting.”
More insight into her collection: DeMaroc Home’s rugs were crafted with genuine berber symbols and ancient Moroccan motifs that give each one a special charm, she said, and the yarn-dyed palettes come from all-natural vegetable dyes.
All that said, it’s no wonder some pieces are not meant for the floor.
“I have one hanging in my studio and another one in my hallway,” she said. “My rugs are collectors’ pieces that are so rare that some people might prefer hanging them on their walls as art.”
Price points range from $800 to $6,000, depending on style and size.
DeMaroc Home’s target customers include designers, decorators and “educated shoppers” who understand the special quality of its product offering.
“They understand that these pieces are original, and they know they can’t find anything like them anywhere else,” Ellison said.
Looking ahead, she hopes to collaborate with fine artists to create capsule collections, “and each year, evolve it with different artists bringing new perspectives.”