Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Technicolor Love

Miss Lana and I went out to breakfast and manicures the other day. While getting our nails done we were talking about decorating my apartment. While we were talking I confessed that I had realized while looking at furniture online that I am willing to pay way more for a purse than I am say, an armchair. And, luckily, she agreed. Which kept me from feeling like a crazy person. But this brings me to the topic of rugs.

Rugs are expensive. It's as simple as that. I don't think there's really any getting around it. And when you are looking for something other than a traditional Persian looking rug things get even more expensive.

After looking around a lot I had found one rug I liked. I figure I'll need something at least 5'x7' so spending less than $500 was looking less and less possible. Until I stumbled upon these.

These rugs are by a company called ABC Carpet and Home. As far as I understand, these rugs are worn vintage rugs that are somewhat bleached out then over dyed. I think they're gorgeous and would love to have one in my home. Here's the problem, the least expensive of these rugs is 3'x4'7", orange with a house (?) drawn on it, and $900. So in other words, buying one of these is not going to happen. But I mean, how hard could bleaching a rug and dying it be?

Apparently really ridiculously difficult. Check out comment number two.

Now I know I'm stubborn but I still feel compelled to try it. I figure I can buy a rug at IKEA for under $100, bleach/oxyclean/something it to lighten the color, then figure out a way to redeposit color. Perfection is not the goal here so it doesn't really matter if there are flaws. I know dye needs heat to set so maybe I can hand apply dye diluted in hot water? Use a blow dryer to set it? Ideas? Advice? Warnings that I may or may not head?

My other idea which is significantly more simple yet also less awesome is to get a low pile rug from IKEA and use silkscreen ink to basically just paint a design onto it. Silkscreen ink doesn't move unless it's washed without being heat set first. With most fabrics you can just throw whatever was silkscreened into the dryer after the ink dries to set it. With a rug I'm pretty sure sitting on the floor and blow drying the rug would work well enough. If I went this route I'd basically have two options, free hand paint a design with a brush or create a stencil and use a brush or roller to apply the ink. I think this idea would look best on a neutral rug, I'm thinking a darker gray, with a design in multiple colors. For that reason I don't want to use an actual silkscreen. The process just becomes too difficult when using too many colors.

If I went this route I'd likely end up with something along these lines.

What do you think? Take on the crazy difficult project with a hopefully amazing outcome or go the safe route?

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