Jul 15

5 Ways to Choose the Right Rug – with Creative Director Roxanne Hanna

Originally written by and posted on Dering Hall:

When it comes to designing a home, rugs are essential—both for providing comfort and warmth as well as establishing a foundation for the design scheme. Choosing the right rug is a key part of the design process, and careful consideration must be given to materials, style and intended location. To help navigate the selection process, Roxanne Hanna, Creative Director of Merida, is here to help with insights about durability, comfort and use. For more than 30 years, Merida has been a leader in rug design, manufacturing its exquisite pieces in Fall River, MA.

credit and interior design: M. Frederick Interiors

1. Focus on Durability for Areas with Heavy Foot Traffic

“For high-traffic areas, like entryways and foyers, it’s best to focus on materials that are a little tougher and less resistant to wear. Sisal, in particular, is a great choice because of its strength,” says Hanna. Wear also extends to the edges, where Hanna recommends leather, linen or an outdoor fabric to increase the lifetime of the rug.

Shop UltraFiber stain resistant sisal rugs >


interior design: Celerie Kemble

2. Consider Style & Maintenance for Rooms Where Family and Friends Congregate

When it comes to areas that you spend the most time entertaining in—living rooms, family rooms and dens—rugs that are comfy yet easier to clean are the best bet. Specifically, Hanna suggests wool rugs, which have fibers that contain lanolin, a natural repellent.

Shop woven wool rugs >


interior design: Ken Gemes Interiors

3. Focus on Luxury in the Bedroom

Bedrooms require a softer touch, and Hanna suggests a tufted rug, which “hybridizes a cushy feel with a look of luxury.” There’s more style options with wool tufted rugs, and they are a bit more welcoming to the feet than other natural fiber options.

Shop tufted wool rugs >


interior design: Cloth & Kind

4. Choose Jute for Spaces Where You Want Texture and Comfort

“Jute is a great alternative to sisal,” explains Hanna. “It has a wonderfully textural look while still being soft to touch.” A jute rug works great in the living room where a departure from the typical wool rug is welcome without sacrificing feel.

Shop hand-braided and woven jute rugs >


5. Use a Flatweave for Spaces You Didn’t Think Needed a Rug

Flatweave rugs are some of the most popular and versatile rugs on the market today. “Flatweave rugs are thin, soft, durable and can work really in any room,” says Hanna. Especially great for stairways and kitchens, a flat woven rug provides a quick, easy way to bring a dash of excitement without the fuss.

Shop flatwoven wool, sisal, and sisal blend rugs >

Jun 15

3 Featured Spring Retreats

As we say goodbye to spring and officially embrace the summer season, we want to share a few of our favorite spring projects published in top shelter magazines over the past few months. Designers Beth Webb, Megan Winters, and Susan Bohlert Smith created stunning interiors that make elegant use of light and build excitement for the changing seasons. Presenting three inspiring spring retreats with sun and soul, from Chicago to Costa Rica.

Veranda May 2015 – ‘Light Touch’
Designer: Beth Webb

Beth Webb designed an airy, calming retreat in a Costa Rican paradise. The perfect lead-in to summer, this home is both dramatic and at-ease—a mix of awe-inspiring grandeur and casual elegance. With the goal of keeping the mood both relaxed and fresh, Webb used a neutral palette with regional influences and pops of color.

(click to enlarge) A gorgeous living room with tropical sun and breezes. With a Bora Bora jute rug. Veranda / Laura Resen

Rug featured: Boardwalk Braid Sunrise jute.


Elle Decor May 2015 – ‘Going for the Gold’
Designer: Megan Winters

Megan Winters’ own Lake Forest home was featured in last month’s Elle Decor. High contrast black and whites serves as a base for her to add accents of gold and pink. While pink is her favorite color, she challenged herself to all but leave it out of this first floor. Winters’ architectural interior design style of straight lines and sharp contrasts provides a counterpoint to the organic natural elements of the outdoors.

Megan winters living room with Merida Mayon Abaca rug

The living room, with a Mayon abaca rug. Elle Decor / William Abranowicz

Megan Winters living room with a Merida Mayon abaca rug

A second view of the living room. Elle Decor / William Abranowicz

Megan Winters dining room with merida mayon abaca rug

The dining room, with another Mayon abaca rug. Elle Decor / William Abranowicz

A niece's bedroom, with Grand Tournai wool & sisal. Elle Decor / William Abranowicz

Rugs featured: Mayon abacaGrand Tournai wool & sisal.


Traditional Home June 2015 – ‘Legal Ease’
Designer: Susan Bohlert Smith – Bohlert Massey Interiors

On Florida’s beautiful Golf Coast, Susan Bohlert Smith set out to create spaces that allow attention to shift to the spectacular ocean and dunes of the natural environment. She chose earthy neutrals for a softer interior that compliments the views while maintaining textural and stylistic interest. Bohlert Smith mixed casual and formal elements to create a space that is both relaxing and grand.

The living room, with a Bora Bora jute rug. Traditional Home / Colleen Duffley

The sitting room, with a Broadway Glacier sisal rug. Traditional Home / Colleen Duffley

The bedroom, with a Madagascar sisal rug. Traditional Home / Colleen Duffley

Rugs featured: Bora Bora Sunrise juteBoardwalk Glacier sisalMadagascar Glacier sisal.


May 15

Introducing UltraFiber, sisal built to perform

Two of our newest products are setting a new standard for stain-resistant performance in beautiful Belgian sisal. Avant and Urbana are woven in 100% natural sisal treated with UltraFiber, an innovative stain-resistant, fire-retardant technology deep at the fiber level, making it safe for children and pets. Merida UltraFiber rugs ensure durability and long-lasting protection for high-traffic areas in residential, retail, or hospitality settings. Spun, mixed, and woven in Belgium. Hand finished in Fall River, USA.

Avant, our newest sisal pattern, features a unique herringbone construction that creates visual interest while remaining handsome and refined.

Avant is available in 6 earthy colorways.


Urbana is already established on the floors of boutique hotels, top tier fashion brands, and charming residences.

UltraFiber combines the warm, earthy colors and elegant weave structures of sisal with unprecedented fiber level stain-resistance, and is surprisingly durable for high-traffic areas. Whether your space will see a lively stream of customers, or family, friends and tipsy guests, UltraFiber is a smart solution in durable, natural sisal.

Explore UltraFiber >

May 15

Announcing our first LA showroom, at Harbinger.


A new story unfolds: Harbinger and Merida

We are beyond excited to be opening our first Los Angeles boutique showroom at Harbinger later this year. The details behind the partnership are in the official press release below:

BOSTON, MA. May 1, 2015

Merida, a leading textile producer with design and manufacturing facilities in Fall River, Massachusetts, announces its first boutique showroom at Harbinger, an exclusive designer retail space in Los Angeles owned and curated by designer Joe Lucas. When Merida opens its doors in the Harbinger space in September 2015, it will join an impressive list of exclusive brands serving the interior design trade that includes luxury leather makers Moore & Giles, among other leading companies.

Harbinger will be expanding its current footprint to take on an additional 1000 square feet of studio space, to be called “Harbinger by Hand.” With Merida as its newest partner, the space will feature select bespoke and handmade lines, including Harbinger’s reproduction furniture collection.

Catherine Connolly, CEO and Owner of Merida, says the timing couldn’t be better to launch the company’s first boutique store. “We have many exciting new products to showcase, including Crosspoint—our latest collection of flatwoven rugs made in Fall River—and our new family of UltraFiber sisal rugs, Avant and Urbana.”  But Ms. Connolly is equally excited about joining the Harbinger family, under the innovative stewardship of design trailblazer Joe Lucas, co-founder of Lucas Studio, Inc. “I have so much admiration for Joe as a design leader,” says Ms. Connolly. “He has an amazing talent for curating collections, and he is also an impressive business leader. And his generosity of spirit is rare in any industry. It’s a thrill and an honor for all of us at Merida to partner with him.”

Located in the heart of LA’s La Cienega Design Quarter, Harbinger strives to be a different kind of source for the design trade, explains founder Joe Lucas, and Merida makes a great addition to the mix of carefully chosen collections that sets Harbinger apart. “I have been a longtime fan of Merida,” says Lucas. “The company singlehandedly introduced the design world to the beauty of sisal rugs. And under the inspirational leadership of Catherine Connolly, Merida has reimagined its brand and collections with innovative designs and culture-conscious manufacturing. I have so much respect for Merida’s leadership in the revitalization of manufacturing in the New England mill town of Fall River. They are not only bringing integrity and quality to the rug and textile business, they are reviving American artistry in a community with roots in craftsmanship going back to the 1800s. Under the guidance of their talented new Creative Director, Roxanne Hanna, Merida has added exciting new collections like Crosspoint and Tailormade, and there is so much more to come.”

Roxanne Hanna has been a long-time admirer of what Lucas and his team have created at Harbinger, and what they have brought to the LA design community.  “I am truly excited to work with Joe and his team,” say Ms. Hanna. “I can’t think of a better partner in Los Angeles, or better company to surround ourselves with than the talented makers he has chosen to showcase at Harbinger.”