House of Moroccan Rugs is a Moroccan based startup with an innovative concept; democratizing the authentic handmade wool rugs and representing the ancestral Berber art of weaving to the world. The website features a beautiful collection of one of kind authentic handmade Moroccan wool rugs waved by Berber women in the Atlas Mountain in North Africa, with other options that can be made to order where the customer can customize the size and colors. The rugs looks soft, luxurious and above all, it’s an eco friendly natural alternative for those who want to contribute in the protection of our planet.
For interior design enthusiasts, Moroccan and Berber rugs have a wide base of international audience especially in the United States. It is in fact the impeccable quality and the amazing yet simple design choices that make those “white giants” a fanciful piece of furniture with infinite potential, and truly a timeless vibe.
From a technical point of view, the Berber rug weaving consists of multiple small knots of wool that are not cut, but woven one by one manually, to form –after at least a month of hard word- the unique artistic expression of the weaver. Historically, these rugs have been traced back to the Paleolithic era and in fact, the famous name Beni Ourain comes from the tribe that invented this art in North Africa.
The Moroccan textiles are often compared with those of India because of their similarity in style, technique, materials and color palette but there are significant differences between them too which must be taken into account if they are to be considered as one cultural group rather than two separate groups in similar circumstances, and within each group some villages may have traditions which are more closely related than others even though they are situated in quite different environments. The history of Morocco’s textile industry is complex and it was probably not until the nineteenth century that any real development took place.
In the last decade, there has been a growing appreciation of the traditional skills and techniques involved in the creation of these rugs, especially in terms of their inherent artistic and social values, which are rarely appreciated today outside Morocco itself, where they remain almost unknown or regarded as exotic objects for tourists rather than works of art with a universal significance: “In this sense, it is not so much the carpet’s material qualities that have attracted so much attention but rather its use and meaning as a decorative element within the interior”. The current revival of interest in carpets is partly due to the rise in popularity of nomadic lifestyles and the need for more simple, natural and minimalistic interior designs.
Founder’s story and what motivated them to start the business
Seeing the markets, especially European, flooded with industrially produced copies from turkey, India and China, while at the same time the Berber community in Morocco is still living in difficult conditions without benefiting from its cultural heritage in a way that is commensurate with the global celebration of its product, And where you notice that the spotlight is taken away from it in favor of large companies and manufacturers. We, the family of HouseOfMoroccanRugs.com, decided to be a gateway to connect the Berber artisans with the world, so they can benefit from their heritage, and to support their production and promote their products internationally through our label, and on the other hand, we can guarantee the best prices for those looking for Berber rugs without having to buy low quality imitations, to escape the exaggerated prices.
The challenges the business and the market is facing
There are several challenges that the business and market of handmade rugs is facing. One of the most significant challenges is that it has been difficult to develop a sustainable niche for this type of product. Another challenge is technological advancement, which makes it hard for people to keep up with new trends in the industry. The third challenge involves price fluctuations, which can affect both small businesses and large corporations manufacturing handmade rugs. These challenges can be summarized into the following four points:
Handmade rugs have been around for centuries and have always been a popular choice for homeowners. They add character and life to any room and often times are less expensive than other types of flooring. However, there are a number of factors that have conspired to make the business of handmade rugs increasingly difficult.
The rise of mechanized rug production has made it increasingly difficult for rug weavers to make a living. Large rug companies are able to mass produce rugs at a much lower cost than small businesses, and there is therefore less incentive for these businesses to invest in modern production methods. This has led to a decrease in the demand for handmade rugs, which has in turn caused prices to decline.
There are a number of solutions that can be implemented in order to improve the situation of handmade rugs. For example, governments could promote the sale of handmade rugs through tax breaks and other incentives. Companies could invest in new production methods, and consumers could learn more about the benefits of handmade rugs. However, it will likely be a few years before these changes have a significant impact on the business of handmade rugs.
Economic conditions are affecting the demand for handmade rugs
The economic conditions have drastically changed in the past several years and this has had a negative impact on the demand for handmade Moroccan rug. There are a number of reasons for this, but the most significant are the rising costs of raw materials and the increasing competition from mass-produced products.
The pandemic has had a devastating effect on the demand for handmade rugs. Consumers are looking to purchase cheaper, mass-produced carpets as replacements for their pricey handcrafted counterparts. For many rug makers, this means decreased sales and reduced employment opportunities. Additionally, higher prices may encourage consumers to buy less expensive imitation or knockoff versions of popular designs rather than paying more money for a genuine artisanal rug.
Advancements in technology are making it difficult for small businesses of handmade rugs to compete
Despite the benefits and ecological impact of handmade rugs in general, they have to compete with advances in technology. Textile firms that make rugs using technology can produce rugs with finer details, wider variety of colors and patterns, and greater resistance to wrinkles. These advances have made it difficult for businesses that make handmade rugs to compete.
However, businesses of handmade rugs can still be successful by adapting to the changes in the marketplace. They can focus on producing high-quality rugs that are unique and interesting, and they can establish close relationships with customers.
The opportunities our business and the market in general is facing
The handmade rug industry is facing several challenges, but it is still growing in popularity. In order to continue growing, the industry will need to improve its marketing and sales efforts.
According to The Centre for the Promotion of Imports from Developing Countries (cbi.eu) in Netherlands: “European handwoven rug imports peaked in 2017 at €66 million. By 2020, they dropped to €48 million (obviously due to the economical impact of the pandemic), which is comparable to the level of 2013. Because the actual market is fairly steady, this may suggest a switch from Kelem, Schumacks, Karamanie, and similar handwoven rugs to different types of handwoven rugs that are excluded from this HS-code. Worldwide handwoven rug imports showed a similar pattern, reaching €138 million in 2020. This means the European market accounts for about a third of the worldwide hand-woven rug imports”
Also, the latest edition of Euromonitor’s Sustainable Fashion report focuses on the growing popularity of ethical brands among European consumers, and examines how these trends will impact manufacturers and retailers over the coming years.
There are various opportunities that exist on the hand woven rug market, due to the increasing popularity of traditional craftsmanship and design in combination with environmental and social sustainability. Increasing interest in natural materials and sustainable manufacturing practices is leading to resurgence in hand woven rugs made from wool, cotton, silk or other environmentally friendly materials. There is also increased demand for ethically produced products made by small artisanal businesses that focus on quality over quantity.
Advice to others about business
The eco friendly business opportunities are beneficial to both to the environment because it creates jobs and revenue, and reduces pollution and waste, and improves living conditions worldwide. Increased business can improve the environment by reducing energy consumption, conserving natural resources, and creating new jobs for fragile communities. However, this model has also its dark side IF we don’t do as much as we can to guarantee a faire trade system that will be beneficial for third world countries.
Also, in a competitive world, businesses must compete on many fronts to survive and prosper. In order to do this, they need to develop strategies that will help them improve their position in the marketplaces:
- Develop a clear vision for your business.
- What does it stand for?
- Why should people buy from you instead of someone else?
- Be specific about what you offer your customers and why they should want it.
- You’ll be able to focus on target markets and create marketing campaigns that speak directly to those interests.
- Stay up-to-date with technology trends.