Posts Tagged: sustainable design

Jul 10

How to Reuse Our Sample Box

Quick show of hands, how many of you have received our new sample box? I hope you didn’t throw it out because if you did you missed a chance to be very hip and sustainable.

Maegan Fee our Creative Director created our new sample boxes as part of an overall branding update. While our brand has always stood for sustainability and great design its always evolving and improving on both fronts.

Our new sample box launched this year is just one more way we’re trying to remain dedicated to design and sustainability in all we do. Our sample boxes were created with cool patters on the inside and as Maegan shows you below, they can very easily be re-used to make a nice storage container or gift box.

Jul 10

Staying Cool With Wool Rugs

In Boston where our home offices are we’re having a heat wave. This has got us all thinking about ways to keep cool – with style of course and this got me thinking. What about wool?

We’ve said all along that wool like we use in our Sweater Rugs, Pure Rugs, and all of our designer wool rugs is a remarkable fiber with remarkable properties. Wool has been used for over 10,000 years and in very hot climates due to its temperature regulating properties and comfort. So what is it exactly that wool does to help keep us cool and warm?

A Little Wool History

Well for starters lets look at a little history to gain some perspective.  According to Wikipedia, the oldest known European wool textile from around 1500 BC was found preserved in a Danish Bog. Wool fibers from wild goats found in a prehistoric cave dating as far back as 34,000 BC suggest that wool fabrics were made even earlier.

Wool experts believe that ancient civilizations living in Mesopotamia cultivated sheep for food and clothing 10,000 years ago. Because sheep are herd animals, this created a mobile resource for basic human needs. The warmth of wool clothing and the mobility of sheep allowed people to spread civilization beyond the warm climate of the Mesopotamian Valley.

Why Wool Rugs Are Cool

Wool’s ability to regulate temperature, insulate and even cool come from two very cool characteristics. The first actually has to do with air. Still air pockets are one of the best insulators in nature. The natural crimp in wool fibers make them stand apart from each other creating millions of tiny air pockets. The impact of laying a wool rug on your floor is like laying incredibly efficient and safe insulation on your floors.

Wool rugs reduce heating and cooling energy requirements by preventing heat loss and preventing heat rising through the floor keeping your room cool and comfortable. If you use air conditioners you will appreciate the insulation on the floors as the cooled air sinks to the floor where you don’t want it warmed by heat rising from the floor.

The other unique feature of wool which helps cool you down is its ability to absorb moisture. Wool fibers are hygroscopic, meaning they readily absorb moisture. Wool can absorb up to 40% of its own weight in moisture and still remain dry. Wool is also not susceptible to mold due to its unique structure.

As they absorb moisture, wool fibers warm up reducing humidity and condensation in the room. Conversely as moisture evaporates back into the air it cools down. This process means less energy is required to heat and cool a room.


I think you’ll agree with me when I say wool is very cool and that is part of why we love working with it. With its amazing room temperature and moisture regulating properties we shouldn’t overlook wool’s most obvious feature however, its soft and gorgeous and makes fantastic looking, durable rugs. In future posts we’ll explore some of wool’s other amazing characteristics such as safety, sustainability and ease of designing textiles with it.

Explore Merida Wool Rugs

Wool Rugs on Sale at Merida Home

Tufted Wool Rugs

Woven Wool Rugs

Sweater Wool Rugs

Wool Carpet from The Pure Collection

Jun 10

The Jute Sprouting Effect

Jute rugs commonly experience something called “sprouting”. Sprouting is observed in the form of small fibers sticking up from the rug for a period after it’s installed.

Sprouting is common, and requires nothing more than clipping down the fibers that have popped up. The process is similar to the initial shedding of a wool or synthetic fiber rug and over time, the need for clipping back these fibers with diminish.

You definitely should not let this scare you away from jute as a natural fiber rug choice. Jute fibers are extremely strong yet have an surprisingly silky and soft feel. They also are a highly sustainable choice as jute plants grow quickly and jute yarns are 100% biodegradable.

Why do Jute Rugs Sprout?

Jute fibers are short as compared to sisal fiber for example, and because our jute rugs are made from hand-spun jute yarn, the short fibers have a natural tendency to pop out.  This is part of the natural character of these hand-braided and hand-sewn rugs.

Jute, being a natural fiber rug and thus an organic material, also adjusts to its environment. Warmer, cooler, dryer and more humid environments cause the rug fibers to expand and contract.

Where the rugs are woven it is very warm and so you can imagine that in moving to a cooler climate the fiber contraction could easily cause some sprouting as some shorter fibers can pull from the weave. The same rug in a different home environment might not experience much of a change at all and sprouting would be minimal.

We think that this is part of the charm of a natural fiber rug like jute. We like knowing that our homes are filled with healthy organic materials that react to us just as we we react to them. It doesn’t hurt that jute is silky smooth and very stylish as well.

See Merida’s Jute Area Rugs

Some of our Favorite Jute Rug Photos

Jun 10

How to Install Veledo Recycled Leather Flooring

We are pleased to announce that we’ll soon be shipping samples of our new Veledo recycled leather flooring. This new sustainable flooring product represents the first ever non-textile addition to our product line. Because its extremely stylish, durable and has a great sustainability story we feel its a great fit.

Below is a short video created and narrated by our own Tara McLarney, account manager extraordinaire. We’ll  be writing more about Veledo and are anxious to feature our first design project using it. Will it be yours? – Read more about Veledo. To order samples or buy call 800-345-2200 or email

Here are few candid photos of Veledo:

Leather Flooring Tile

Recycled Leather Flooring