• Cecile Corral

'Kismet' brings together natural, synthetic fibers at Karastan

New collection debuts this summer

karastan kismetOracle Blush rug, Kismet collection
DALTON, Ga. — Applying new fiber and manufacturing innovations, Karastan has developed its first natural-and-synthetic rug collection.

Call it Kismet.

Launching this week during the Atlanta International Area Rug Market and again at Las Vegas Market July 31- Aug. 3, the collection pairs wool of the same qualities the company uses for its upscale Axminster rug styles with parent company Mohawk Inds.’ own sustainable SmartStrand synthetic fiber.

The result, Karastan noted, is a combination of durability, sustainability and performance attributes from the SmartStrand fibers with a textural, low-profile pile height and heirloom quality created by the wool.

“Kismet is defined as something significant happening that comes about by fate,” said Tracy Pruitt, vp of design, Karastan. “So perhaps it is fate, or kismet, that Karastan would think to combine wool and SmartStrand Silk in one incredible collection.”

Via Kismet, Karastan is hoping to build its business with furniture and floor covering stores and e-commerce retailers. The collection’s price point, at $799 for a 5-by-8-foot rug hits a new tier, falls squarely between the company’s high-end $999 for an all-wool product and $499 for an all-synthetic rug.

“We’re fairly limited on what can be done with an all-wool product, and it’s hard to sell rugs that retail for more than $1,000,” explained Bart Hill, senior vice president, product and operation. “With Kismet we’ve created a performance advantage and a price advantage. We’ve created a hybrid product that can sell at a hybrid price point.”

Kismet’s design portfolio is also “hybrid,” Hill added. The mix ranges from archival antique Persian patterns updated with current colors for traditional preferences to contemporary abstract and textural styles for my modern tastes.

All of the rugs are realized in a range of neutrals, grays and cream with accents of steel blue, pale wheat and aqua.

Also, the rugs are finished using the same wash techniques that Karastan said it has been “using for years” — a process designed to enhances the drape and softness of each piece.

“We’re excited to bring this to the markets this summer,” Hill said. “We’ve previewed it with some of our customers, and their responses have been very good. This is the first time we’ve ever blended wool and synthetic fibers. It’s a big deal, and we’re seeing a lot of interest from retailers.”

Karastan will be showing Kismet and other new collections this summer at its showrooms in the Atlanta AmericasMart in Building 1, space 3-A-1, and Las Vegas’ World Market Center in space C-312.

Cecile CorralCecile Corral | Senior Product Editor, Home Textiles Today

Cecile B. Corral has been a product editor with Home Textiles Today since late 2000. She covers the area and accent rug, kitchen textiles, table linens, beach towels, decorative bath and decorative pillow categories, as well as some retail subjects.

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