Some interesting points came to light in a discussion with Shawnna Graham of LS Interiors in North Carolina. One of the major points she made was that as shipping costs have become so high, she and her partner, Lizzy Summerlin, shop locally far more than ever before. That allows them to save on freight for their clients. Togar Rugs in the area offers them a lot of service with finer rugs. They can call ahead or drop samples by, and an assistant at Togar Rugs will prepare a selection of rug samples for them to see. Togar will allow them to try a rug in the client’s home to see in the setting and can arrange for rug cleaning in the future.
Another point Shawnna made was that with her commercial projects, most of the time, the project revolves around the rug selection, which is the first thing that is usually chosen. The choice of fabrics used, the paint colors, the exact color of the fabric, all then must then blend with the rug selection. She uses a lot of Shaw Living carpets for her commercial projects, such as the new Beverly Hanks office, the new spa at Crowne Plaza or a hotel in Bristol. The visual flow-through is very important–from room to room. The transition must be seamless from space to space.
For more casual room settings, Shawnna and Lizzy often select rugs from Design Materials, liking in particular their seagrass rugs which are easy to clean with just soap and water. They always use a suitable rug pad for proper cushioning underneath. The freight charges are consistent; there is usually a quick two-week turnaround; the selection is great; and the DM representative comes around regularly to update samples. She also said that her firm has NEVER had a problem with packaging on the rugs that are shipped from Design Materials. The rugs are wrapped with two layers of heavy plastic which protects the rug and the bindings. She and Lizzy have never had to return a rug to Design Materials because of a shipping problem.