Portfolio by Nourison debuts with a diverse collection of bold, modern rugs
Earlier this month in Manhattan, the Nourison showroom played host to an eclectic and talented ensemble as they introduced a new line of area rugs to the industry: Portfolio by Nourison.
The event provided media and VIP guests with a chance to get an up-close, hands-on experience with the new rugs while enjoying cocktails and hors d’oeuvres, and getting to learn more about the creative process first-hand from the designers. As Nourison CEO Alex Peykar pointed out at show’s end, “The only way to do the rugs justice, the only way you’re going to know what they’re really like is to be much closer to them, to be able to feel and touch and see up close what they really look like.”
Million Dollar Decorating host James Swan emceed the event to introduce the five fabulous interior design teams who have partnered with Nourison to create a wide range of modern, contemporary rugs reflecting each of their unique design styles.
For Nourison, as Peykar joked, “it was a chance to have such talented designers to come and finally after being in business for 37 years to show us what good designs are supposed to look like!”
For the designers, it meant taking a slice of their interior design inspirations and focus it in a single element — a rare opportunity they each seemed to relish.
“I think sometimes the rugs are a secondary thought,” said the event’s first designer, Kim Scodro, “but not only with our collection but all the designers, you can really start your design process from that rug. They’re beautiful, all of them. And every one of them has such a strong personality that you can start and build form there and let the rug shine and be the star of the show, or you can build and use it as a layering device.”
Scot Meacham Wood summed up the designers’ experience: “I have the most vivid memory of being at a Christmas party last year and getting the first color separations, and having to go sit in a room and look at them … It’s such a visceral memory that this is actually going to turn into something, it’s not just pencil drawings on a piece of paper.”
The design took center stage, but texture made a big impact as well. Portfolio rugs are each hand knotted from New Zealand wool and wool blends of nylon, silk, and Luxcelle™. The touch of Luxcelle adds a silky smooth texture to the rugs, while also reflecting light to create even more complexity in color and pattern.
The diverse aesthetics shined through as each designer presented a preview of Portfolio’s luxurious, artistic, and dynamic collection. You can tell the interior designers really put their hearts into the designs, and it reflects in an amazing array of styles, colors, and textures. It’s an exciting collaboration, and we can’t wait to see how the designers style these rugs in their own interior projects!
Scodro’s designs have such a modern elegance in soft palettes, including an abstract design in pink hues. She talked about the influences that find their way into her signature style.
“We try to always cater to whatever our clients want, but sometimes we can’t help it,” she said while describing two of her rug designs. “It’s always 100 percent there, there’s always a Parisian apartment that comes about with the beautiful architectural details and the gorgeous simple palettes, and we had hoped that any one of the rugs that we did would fit seamlessly into one of those interiors and I think they would.”
“They gave us no restrictions whatsoever, so when you’re faced with that as a designer it’s sort of crippling, to a certain extent, so we decided, ‘Let’s dream big.’ We’ll shoot them back to Nourison and we’ll have them tell us what we can’t do and they didn’t. Not one of the designs did they say we can’t do, they just made it work. So honestly this is exactly what we dreamed up!”
Scot Meacham Wood
Wood’s signature tartan patterns were on full display, with a modern and fashionably masculine touch. He described how his work in traditional Scottish design provides a wealth of inspirational depth.
“One thing that fascinates me about tartan is it feels very masculine – in its war and battles and “Outlander” and all of that. But then it’s also pretty and romantic, and it’s Bronte, and there are so many of those emotional connotations, and I like to be able to play in all those camps.”
His first design, a modern take on tartan with a silhouetted stag head, drew plenty of oohs and ahs from the crowd.
“I’ve always been connected to my Scottish heritage, and I wanted to find some new way of expressing that, taking what is a traditional, well-known, well-trod pattern and bringing in a new point of view and new colorations to it,” he said. “What could we do to make it new and different and interesting? This is another step away from the original authenticity, but I think that movement makes it feel even more modern and more current, and not as stodgy as it might be.”
Jaime Rummerfield and Ron Woodson
“Another quiet, demure rug…” Swan deadpanned as he introduced Jaime Rummerfield and Ron Woodson and their bold, colorful rug designs. “Yes, that’s us!” replied Rummerfield.
Woodson added, “Our clients, they know what they’re getting into. If you come to us, there are no wallflowers here.
The award-winning design duo brought an infusion of Southern California style with a vibrant L.A. vibe including a “red carpet ready” design along with the Pucci-esque 60s mod vibe of another design in gorgeous green hues.
“Our middle name is not safe,” Rummerfield said. “We tend to be bold with our color combinations and design projects that are memorable. We have a lot of colorful clients as well, so we have the opportunity to some really dynamic work. And to integrate that into a rug collection is a dream come true for us.”
Catherine and Justine Macfee
Catherine and Justine Macfee talked about how Catherine’s years of experience in the industry combine with her daughter Justine’s fresh insight and perspective to create unique, energetic designs that are particularly evident in their Portfolio rug designs. Like the other designers, both pointed to strong regional influences in their work, reflecting their Lake Tahoe location as well as their travels abroad.
“Working in the mountains, trying to pull that concept in and say ‘How does that relate to our clients?” Justine said in describing the creative process behind their Portfolio preview designs. “Really it started with playing with patterns and stripes and scale and play of scale. That’s kind of where we went crazy.
“Nourison really didn’t give us any boundaries, so whatever your design heart wants to do. So we played around and played with colors and textures.”
Geyer’s designs proved a spectacular finale, featuring eye-catching blue-hued patterns that inspired an impromptu dance session with Swan on a textured leopard-patterned rug that seemed a perfect example of what she wanted to accomplish with her contributions to Portfolio.
“You’ll see in my designs, I’m looking for stuff you don’t see everywhere out there,” Geyer said. “Some of the things that I love and am passionate about, and the stuff I see my clients asking for — something that’s different.
“What I love the most is color, texture and just things that make you feel happy. When I was sitting down thinking about what I was going to present to Nourison, I just want everything to make me feel good — I want people to come dance on the rug and feel good about it.”