1. Because handmade rugs have a notoriously long life and are, sadly, likely to outlive us all, do you think that this longevity should influence design and colour decisions?
Firstly, I don’t think it sad at all in a throwaway world that some things are built to last generations. It’s becoming more and more an aim of mine to try and transcend short term fashions, and also it’s clear that taste in colour and design is cyclical – so even if you make radical decisions in colour and pattern these things will inevitably drop in and out of fashion .
2. What surprised you about the translation of your designs into rugs?
Working as we often do on the computer screen, it’s impossible to predict the effect of light and shade on the pile of a carpet! The fact that wool is a natural material and ‘softens’ the design is likewise very difficult to anticipate – the great thing about it is the joy and surprise of unrolling the samples for the first time and seeing your idea, which you have previously seen in a 15 inch pixellated screen format transformed into a massive, luminous, soft plane of colour.
3. Is contemporary design compatible with age old craft?
But of course – especially in an age when we are surrounded by industrially made, machine reproduced identikit objects – people will always hanker for something with a bit more humanity.
4. How important is colour within design?
Colour is one of the great joys of life – all too often misunderstood or ignored, but interestingly always produces the most emotional and intransigent arguments whenever it’s seriously discussed – I have seen people reduced to tears when their view on colour has been ignored !
5. What did you enjoy about the rug design process?
The beautiful, cultural and relaxed people of the Rug Company made the experience pure bliss.
6. How would you describe the Tom Dixon rugs?
Beam: Triangular Beams of coloured light fuse to create secondary colours, a distant memory of a seventies disco.
Tube: The bold overlapping discs trick the eye into seeing a Tubular shape. The unexpected colour combination is inspired by the iconic TV test card.
Step: The Step rug uses the most basic of diamond shapes to create an illusion of a small stack of building blocks.
Tile: A basic grid is transformed by randomly placed brightly coloured overlays of acid tones.
Form: Curvilinear shadows of natural form interact on this rug to create a pop art camouflage.