Founded in London in 1997 by Suzanne and Christopher Sharp, The Rug Company grew out of the globe-trotting couple’s love of exotic cultures, exquisite hand-craftsmanship and, of course, rugs. Apart from sticking to conventional retail business practices, the twist the Sharps brought to the trade—which they helped to revivify, both in the UK and abroad—is a contemporary aesthetic; currently, the company markets fashion-forward work by numerous designers, among them Paul Smith, Vivienne Westwood, the late Alexander McQueen, Tom Dixon, and duo Barber Osgerby. With success has come expansion—TRC has seventeen stores worldwide, with five more to arrive by the end of next year—but with no diminution of quality, craft or customer service, according to Chris Sharp. He sat down with Dwell recently (on an unseasonably hot early-spring morning), in his boho-chic, and appropriately rug-filled, establishment in Manhattan’s SoHo district.
July 1, 2011