The Roles Rugs Play
MILIEU Insider with Sarah Tringhese of Matt Camron Rugs and Tapestries
We’re thrilled to produce our latest edition of the MILIEU Insider, where we introduce you to some of the most talented people and respected businesses in the world of design.
Our subjects are often design professionals we’ve known and worked with for a long time and this installment is no exception.
For years now, MILIEU, along with many interior designers we have featured in our pages, have worked with Matt Camron Rugs and Tapestries, most notably with its lovely and knowledgeable creative director, Sarah Tringhese. Matt Camron, a Houston-based, family-run and family-owned company, with additional showrooms in Dallas, Chicago, Denver, and Washington, D.C., offers a vast variety of antique rugs, antique-inspired rugs, and original contemporary designs.
In an exclusive interview, Sarah conveys the new methods and current ideas she is seeing while working with designers. She also shares an inside look at the compelling residential interiors that incorporate rugs from Matt Camron.
Enjoy the conversation!
As a decorative element, rugs are ancient. Given that fact, are there any new trends to note in rug design?
More than any one specific trend in rug design, we’re seeing designers and homeowners turn to rugs as elements that are powerful enough to lead the charge when it comes to creating a thoughtful mix throughout residential and commercial interiors. Instead of producing rugs for one or two spaces, our team here at Matt Camron is being called upon to take the entire project into consideration, pulling a mixture of pieces from our extensive collection to weave color, texture, and interest throughout the entirety of a project.
Tell us a little about how best to combine different kinds of rugs.
Much as they do with furnishings, talented interior designers look for unique combinations of rugs that unite old with new, smooth with texture-rich, and subtle with bold. We make the process of outfitting an entire home or mixed-use commercial space easy because our clients have so many options to choose from, not to mention our custom program that allows them to specify precisely what they want for any space.
What advice do you give to your clients who come to you to help devise a master plan?
The first thing is to “Think Big.” The entire concept of a full-home rug plan lies in taking a step back to assess the design as a whole, versus just looking at one or two spaces. When you can see the big picture, you’re more likely to choose rugs for each area that flow together seamlessly, creating a cohesive design and powerful sense of connection throughout.
What do rugs accomplish that no other item of furniture might?
Rugs allow you to play with style. A contemporary home doesn’t mandate that only contemporary rugs be used, and the same goes for traditionally-designed abodes. Bold antique rugs are incredibly versatile and can help delineate zones within a modern, open-concept environment while weaving in a welcome dose of warmth and character. Likewise, more modern, abstract rug designs in hushed hues can soften classically designed interiors.
We’ve noticed that many interior designers like to layer rugs and textures. How is that best accomplished?
I always like the idea to “Embrace Layers,” really go with that idea. Our team is uniquely positioned to source antique rugs, but there are times when both the style and size you’re looking for may prove difficult to find in one rug. Don’t lose hope! If an antique rug speaks to you but doesn’t quite check the size box, there are a few different ways to make it work. Layer it in with other antique rugs for that sought-after Moroccan rug market vibe or ground the room with a natural fiber rug custom-cut to fit the space and allow your antique treasure to steal the show layered on top.
Where else in the home do rugs really matter?
We journey up and down our stairs all day long, but they often get forgotten when the time comes to select rugs. We love encouraging our clients to explore custom handwoven stair runners. With unique patterns, textures, and weaves, these are a high design alternative to typical broadloom bound carpet you generally find on staircases and they tell a story with every step.
In our current Summer issue, we published a feature story, “A Texas Star”, about a house in New Ulm, Texas, whose interiors were designed by Meg Lonergan. Tell us about her use of Matt Camron rugs throughout the rooms.
It’s true, we were thrilled to see that Meg was able to use everything from antique Oushaks to flatweaves to custom wool and silk rugs made by us. The rugs appear in a variety of rooms of that house—in the great room, the master bedroom, and the master bathroom as seen here. We think that project illustrates perfectly the versatility of rugs and the variety of inventory that defines Matt Camron.