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The Story Behind the Stairs: Naomi Watts’ Apartment by Ashe+Leandro

photo: Douglas Friedman/Architectural Digest

Last month Architectural Digest featured Naomi Watts’ NYC apartment renovation project designed by Ashe + Leandro. During this project Ashe + Leandro came to us to create a bespoke runner on a unique set of stairs. The motif was derived from our collaboration with the duo on a new line of hand-woven sisal and suede rugs.

Both the runner and the new collection were inspired by vintage Tuareg rugs. Since a handwoven rug would obviously not be appropriate for a lengthy runner on a curving staircase, we created a versatile motif in wool that makes a bold statement while also serving as a neutral.

We started by recommending a wool woven construction similar to some our Tailormade rugs. Tailormade is a popular choice for stair runners due to its durability and low profile. Working with the Jacquard loom allowed us to weave exactly the size we needed for each individual stair, in-house, with minimal waste. The field was a blend of two colors of undyed wool, our Fawn and Beige. The motif was undyed wool in the color Loam, a dark earthy gray with a hint of brown.

Since the project was a new renovation, we started with the staircase architectural plans. Working from the plans allowed us to design a rug section to fit each specific stair. Upon visiting the site we realized that the built staircase differed from plans and the builder had made an onsite change to flare out the bottom four stairs. Our Service and Installation Director Bob Margies worked with Ashe+Leandro and our textile designers to make the motif just the right size to fit on the risers and determine exactly how much total material to weave.

Bob Margies and Reinaldo Leandro determined that tailoring the margins to stay consistent as the steps widen, rather than using a standard runner width, was the best option for finishing the rug. Margies mocked up the layout with painter’s tape to confirm the concept.

Material for each stair was cut out and installed individually by one of our trusted installers. As with all of the installation projects we manage, Margies personally qualified him. Adding to the challenges was the fact that the client had come in on a redeye flight the morning before the install, so we needed to work quietly for several hours.

The install went smoothly and all parties were thrilled with the results. As Margies put it, “Working with the right people makes it easier. To have every step cut, hemmed, shaped, and installed on site — not a lot of companies have this ability or expertise. I can’t stress enough the advantages of including us at the beginning of a project. With our carefully vetted network of installers and our 20 years experience in weaving we can help you realize your design vision and expand your idea of what’s possible with rugs and installations."

View the Ashe + Leandro for Merida collection >

Get in touch: connect@meridastudio.com | 617.464.5400

 

 

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