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Second to None

Tim Gosling, British international designer extraordinaire, has extended his reach downward, once again, with his second collection for The Rug Company.

The Empire rug (from $161 per square foot) was inspired by Monument of Marcello Piacentini in Italy.


During your recent visit to Chicago, where we lounged on a pile of handcrafted rugs, you said, “Everything I do is inspired by architecture.” What is it about architecture that excites you?
Every city I visit has a huge impact on my creativity. The first thing I do is look at its architecture. Last week I was in Ibiza in Old Town, with its combination of fishing houses, the old fort and a few wonderful art deco buildings, which have a Spanish influence. Now I’m in Salzburg, Austria, which has the most incredible Russian and Eastern influences. All of this contributes to the way I design my work.

What made you want to design rugs?
In creating furniture, you also create the room, and thus the walls and floor become your stage for the effect you are trying to convey. Designing a rug has become an integral part of the design process for me. So it was a natural fit when, after designing bespoke pieces with The Rug Company for over 17 years, founder Chris Sharp asked me to design a permanent collection for them.
I accepted with great enthusiasm and looked at their entire range of products to see where the gaps were and quickly discovered that architecture, one of my greatest passions, isn’t often produced as a rug design.

Picking out a rug can be a tough decision. Any tips for choosing the right one?
I change the color of my drawing-room walls twice a year with the seasonal change from winter to summer—it’s an easy process, and it’s wonderfully liberating to try out colors I never would have thought possible. The rug also needs to make that translation from one color scheme to another. For example, the bronze and gold silk lines in the new collection go with everything. The tonal layers of gray are remarkably flexible too. Get the best quality you can, as it will show hugely within two or three years if you haven’t. Secondly, in terms of sizing, choose a rug that can easily transition into another room. Lastly, choose a rug that’s classic. The more “out there” it is as a work of art, the more it will date and become difficult to adapt your surroundings around it.

Designer Tim Gosling referenced architectural lines for his new Art Deco collection