Rug Blog by Rug Merchant

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Are traditional Persian inspired oriental rugs making a comeback?

A scene in Downtown Abbey I always notice is where three or four housemaids are charged with the rolling up of the long hall runner because there is going to be a party.  Wise move. Nobody wants a champagne soaked rug particularly when it is as decorative and luxuriant as the one that graces the hall way of the Abbey.   These traditional Persian inspired rug designs, so beloved of our ancestors, are making a comeback –and our love of Edwardian elegance as demonstrated by the success of such shows as Downton have kick started a renaissance for all things historic.  Their oriental patterns connote both the exotic splendor of ancient Persian palaces, but also Colonial era British heritage, wealth and elegance.  They are a comforting link with the past in an era obsessed with electronic gadgets and reality TV.

Property buying programmes (back on the TV in force) also demonstrate our continuing love affair with period features.  Cornices, ceiling roses, fireplaces and real wooden floorboards are top of most people’s wish lists and what better way to embellish such an interior than with a rug that brings with it the weight and grandeur of a better time.

Large traditional rugs, in particular are an excellent alternative to carpets, particularly if you already have wooden, tiled or laminate flooring in place.  They bring to a room all the warmth and comfort of wall to wall carpets but also allow the beauty of the traditional floor covering to shine too.  There are also practical benefits to be gained from opting for a large rug: No expensive carpet fitting to pay for, no strangely shaped ‘off cuts’ to house, and, a huge bonus to most, there is less to hoover !

Here at Rug Merchant there is a large selection of rugs of oriental design.  The Bokhara, Gabbeh, Orient and Samarkand ranges evoke all the exoticism of the Silk Road, Sheherezade and the Ottoman Empire  whilst the Viscount, Royal, Heritage and Diamond traditional rug collections summon to mind the cosy grandeur of the British Empire.

Investing in such a traditional rug is also a way of creating a piece of heritage for your family.  The designs are timeless in their appeal and being machine woven, are extremely durable. A rug bought today could, with care, see you through several generations.  Just remember to take the Downton route and roll it up if you’re planning on having a large bash, then roll back out again for cosy family nights in.  And these rugs are certainly cosy.  Despite the impossible size of such residences I for one, would love a room, like the drawing room at Downton Abbey with its roaring fires, plush upholstery, elegant ornaments and its rather splendid and comforting rugs.



Posted 24 days ago By Louise Gornall

Are you puffed out hoovering your carpets and rugs?

Mavis Davis, Rug Merchant’s newest blogger, explores the very

modern problem of Hoover Fatigue.


Are you puffed out hoovering your carpets and rugs ?

Mavis Davis, Rug Merchant’s newest blogger, explores the very modern problem of Hoover Fatigue. 

I don’t know about you but I hate hoovering rugs !  Particularly those with deep piles.  It’s back breaking work - forcing your nozzle across a shaggy that’s fighting back and I am often left gasping for breath.   I am not blessed with the best of health or a good level of fitness so I’m keen to find a way of keeping a clean house without killing myself off !

Last week was a case in point.  For those of you who have not been round,  I have a large purple Plush Shaggy Rug  in my back bedroom,  and after a particularly energetic session with The Henry Hoover last Friday I found myself stuck at a forty five degree angle until well past Sunday teatime.  Suffice to say I was not best pleased.   Sunday night saw me bent double over the computer, logging on to Shaggy forums asking the advice of others in my sorry position....   

 Rugface84 was most empathetic: ‘Hoovering is an exhausting activity’ she bemoaned ‘ and hoovering a deep pile shaggy is particularly arduous – do what I do and turn it upside down so that the shag pile is facing the floor. Then leave it like that permanently. You will find that it is so much easier to clean’.

This is what I love about forums ! You get so much home spun, straight talking, down to earth advice.

‘Don’t clean it at all’ says Nathansmum1984 ‘Having three children under five makes cleaning anything a fruitless enterprise  – I have got quite used to the pain of walking over tiny lego bricks buried in the pile  and have almost managed to block out the smell. Life is good’

BeiberBelieber13  reported on her mother’s  tactics ‘Mum’s got it pasted’ she stated, ‘she puts it in the dishwasher.  It’s lost all its colour and feels like walking on a bed of nails, but it’s got a nice shine’      

Of course the more traditional cleaning methods were suggested too, such as hanging it over the washing line and beating it with a stick  - but I said  listen Cumberbabe42,  I’m 65 years old. I have a titanium hip joint and a blood pressure average of 170/ 120,  there will be no beating with sticks round here. Surely there had to be way of cleaning a resistant rug without risking my health and well being.

The lightbulb suggestion came 10 posts down after several irrelevant adverts, and some trolls.   ‘Get your husband to hoover the rug  Mavis,’ intoned one bright spark ‘problem solved’.

Colin !  Of Course ! Now why didn’t I think of that .....

Join me next time when I will be looking into the odd phenomena of rugs that are purely woven on the weft.




Posted 29 days ago By Louise Gornall

Sink your toes into one of Rug Merchant’s most luxurious products – The Wonderful World of Shaggy more...

Sink your toes into one of Rug Merchant’s most luxurious products - The Shaggy Rug.

Nothing oozes luxury quite like the deep, soft pile of a shaggy rug.  Tempting and irresistible, you may well find yourself spending more time lounging on yours than on your sofa! Reinvented by 21st-century designers for the contemporary home, their array of styles, colours and designs make them an incredibly versatile design accessory which will enhance any interior. They are one of our most popular styles here at Rug Merchant for their ability to transform a bedroom into a romantic nest, add sophistication to a living room, or form a snug space in a children's bedroom or playroom.

Originally designed in the middle of the 20th century as a type of deep pile carpet, shaggy rugs soon established themselves as a popular element in trendy interior design of the 1960s and 1970s. Paradoxically, they were a victim of their own success as their association with these decades made them less sought-after when that style fell out of favour.

However, with a resurgence of retro fashion in the recent years, they have been making a steady comeback and are, once again, becoming a common sight in our homes, thanks to their inviting warmth and comfort. Fashionable carpet designers have taken them into their hearts, reinventing shaggy rugs with modern, contemporary designs to suit a modern interior.

What gives shaggy rugs their marvellous fluffiness is the type of thick pile called 'shag' used to manufacture them. A shag pile rug is usually produced by making loops either out of natural fibres such as wool, cotton or linen among others, or out of synthetic materials such as acrylic, viscose, nylon or polyester. The strands of yarn are longer than for standard rugs and twisted loosely, rather than tightly as is the case for conventional rugs. While in traditional rugs, the excess fibres would be shorn off, it is not so with shaggy rugs, and it is those less dense, long pieces of material that give shag pile rugs their distinctive feel and look

Practically, as shaggy rugs are so deep, they are an excellent choice for those less than perfect floors, and they also help to protect them and keep them clean while adding opulence to your home

Shag pile rugs come at all prices to suit all budgets. The more economically priced shaggy rugs are made of synthetic fibres and can be less soft than rugs made out of natural materials. Natural fibre rugs are, understandably, towards the higher end of the spectrum in terms of price. They will also have a higher density than acrylic rugs which means that they will collect less dust and dirt and will be easier to maintain.

The enduring appeal of shaggy rugs is undeniable and they are clearly here to stay. So wait no longer for the pleasure to own one and make your home an oasis of charm and tranquillity bringing even the dullest floors to life.  The Festival Range in particular is a riot of colour and suits all interior styles -  from Boho to the Classic. The Plush Range, is, as the name suggests a glorious deep and opulent rug perfect,  both as a room centrepiece,  and when strategically placed before a roaring natural fire.

Check out our complete range of Shaggy Rugs. You will find there is far more diversity to this range than you have ever anticipated !




Posted 7 days ago By Louise Gornall

Mavis Davis’  Top Tips for Rug Care.

This week – How to protect yourself against slippy rugs.


Mavis Davis’  Top Tips for Rug Care.

This week – How to protect yourself against slippy rugs.

Slipping on a rug and breaking your arm in three places can be a right annoyance.   For that reason it’s best avoided. At Rug Merchant we are keen that no one sustains injuries of any kind when operating one of our rugs.   Particularly when drunk.   As we all know - It is a truth universally acknowledged that rugs placed upon the floor should stay put.  They should not travel west the minute we place our foot down.  They should certainly not cause us to lurch forwards and head-butt the radiator.

Slippy rugs are a health hazard, particularly when they are parked on top of a newly polished floor.  Many of us now are completely laminated throughout and get a great deal of pleasure from bees-waxing our boards.  Some of us are rather keen and polish away to the point where we can see our face in the floor.  If this is the case for you, you need to think hard and long about how not to turn your rug into a flying carpet.

One method of staying safe and avoiding an unnecessary trip to Accident and Emergency is to pop down to B&Q and buy a roll of 2” wide gaffa tape, in black.  This should then be used to secure all four edges of your rug to the floor.     If you are of a particularly nervous disposition  you could also try cross hatching the tape across the body of the rug too, for extra piece of mind.

I know what you’re thinking – you’re thinking  ‘Hey ! That’s not going to look good.’  You’re worried that using thick black tape to draw Mickey Mouse lines round the edges of your floor furniture is undecorative and bad Feng Shui.  Well, let me ask you this - what is more conducive to your health and well being: Having all your dining chairs pointing in the direction of your south facing window?  Or ensuring that you can’t smash your brains out on your strategically placed rug ?

If this solution is really not for you – then fear not – there are other options. Sylvia Morris from Guilden Sutton inboxed us the other day to share a tip  ‘I am particularly prone’ says she ‘ to tripping over the edges of my Falkland Flatweave - particularly when I’ve had two distalgesics and a gin.  After the last unfortunate incident which resulted in fourteen stitches and a smashed teapot, I have solved the situation.  After I got back from the Walk In, I promptly rolled up all my rugs and put them under the stairs.  Since then I have had no more accidents.  I am so grateful that I have had this  ‘Road to Damascus’ insight and can get on with my life. Stitches come out next Friday.’

Thanks Sylvia for that. Other solutions worth considering are, of course, checking out our range of antislip rugs in a variety of styles, colours and textures or making a purchase of antislip rug underlay with your rug. Check the menu bar for the link.

Until next time folks X

Posted 28 days ago By Louise Gornall

The Exclusive World of Designer Rugs. Rug Merchant talks you through some of the best rugs on the market.


The Exclusive World of Designer Rugs. Rug Merchant talks you through some of the best rugs on the market.

Louis De Poortere - Modern/Vintage Rug Design

Everyone loves a label. Whether your preference is for Gucci, Gabana or Galliano there is nothing like wearing, or carrying,

something that speaks of quality, exclusivity and taste. Often we will save for ages to purchase an item in our favourite

brand. This brand will say a lot about us. Some may wish to emanate the cool sophisticated allure of Chanel; whilst

others prefer the drama and unique vision of McQueen or Westwood. We wear these items with pride and they become part

of our individual mission statements. The cost ? - not so much extravagance as an investment.

The world of home furnishing also has its market leaders. It has its top designers of quality items, trend setters and

designer labels. One such manufacturer of Rug ‘couture’ is the Dutch brand Louis De Poortere.

Even in the Middle Ages, Flemish textile products had an excellent reputation throughout Europe. Everyone envied the talent

of the Flemish weavers for they had no equal when it came to combining beauty and quality. Louis De Poortere has been

established in Kortrijk since 1859 an enviable longevity in the business world and clients can be reassured by their solid

experience and continued success.

Their style is very much the modern vintage look. It successfully marries the history and tradition of Oriental or rustic

patchwork design with a bold modern colour scheme. Such an innovative approach allows a client to make two statements

at once and creates visual cohesion in a room which might have a combination of modern and vintage ‘shabby chic’

furniture. The bold colour pops are also an excellent way of enlivening a room that may be painted in the beautiful but subtle

pastels of the Annie Sloane range of paints.

With a Designer Rug you are getting a beautiful quality item. The advantage that is has over your tissue bound and boxed

Prada shoes, or your Dolce and Gabana bag, is that you get to look at it, use it, and show it off to others, not just on special

occasions - but every day! Check the main website for the full listing of all our rugs in the Louis De Poortere range

and also look for us on Pinterest.

Posted 4 days ago By Louise Gornall

Have you had a Christmas red wine spillage on your carpet? Rug Merchant Online has the answer. 


Have you had a Christmas spillage ?  Rug Merchant Online has the answer. 

As you may have noticed, Christmas is sadly over.  The tree is packed up, the chocolates all eaten and copious bottles of ruby red wine have all been well and truly quaffed . Well, perhaps not all.  A survey of your house has revealed that a cheeky glass or two of Shiraz has made its way onto your lovely light coloured carpet. Furthermore it looks like it’s there to stay; a permanent crimson  marker and the ghost of a lively Christmas Past.  Dammit !

Well there’s only one thing for it;  It has to go !  Out come the detergents, the wet wipes, the soapy water, the table salt, the tears, the  taboo language,  the blame and recriminations (after all YOU drink white wine so it certainly wasn’t you) followed by the hiring of the Vax and the desperate calls to professional carpet cleaners.  Finally, you have to face the fact that although you have got the worst off, that stubborn pink remaining  stain is now a permanent house guest.

 Do not fear. The answer is near and it is ‘simples’. 

Bung a rug on it.

Here at Rug Merchant we have the full spectrum of styles, textures and colours to choose from.  All our rugs are world class stain coverers and are guaranteed to mask everything from hastily slopped turkey gravy, to crude oil, chip fat or Bardolino 2014.

All you need to do is grab a tape measure and note down the length and breadth of your unsightly spillage then, choose a beautiful rug from our collection that boasts larger dimensions.   

‘I couldn’t believe how easy it was’ said Susan Harrison of Ellesmere Port on our Facebook feed. ‘I accidentally emptied an entire carafe of Chateaux Neuf Du Pape over my beige Axminster on Christmas Day. By New Year I had bought an Asiatic Carpet Diva Shaggy Rug from Rug Merchant Online and placed it over the offending mess. The stain has now miraculously vanished. I couldn’t be more pleased.’ 

Buying a rug is definitely the easiest and least time consuming way to deal with any unfortunate carpet blemish.  

The same goes for laminate flooring.  Let’s face it - we have all been there. Nine O Clock of a Friday night, fully revved Black and Decker Jigsaw in one hand,  single malt in the other, and mind firmly distracted by the comings and goings of Broadchurch on the TV.  Next thing you know, the whisky’s disappeared, the Jigsaw’s on the floor and there’s a nasty looking four inch gash in your Golden Oak laminate.


The remedy ?  Bung a rug on it of course  (with optional underlay)


So, whether it’s stains or  DIY disasters you wish to cover up -  we are here to help and no one need ever know.  Rug Merchant promises never to tell what horrors may lurk beneath their beautifully crafted surfaces.  Shhhhh!   

Posted 18 days ago By Louise Gornall

We’ve listed a few common problems that may arise during a rug’s life time and how they can be best rectifiedread more...

Annoying, isn’t it?

When you’re unwinding of an evening and you’ve ‘starfished’ the sofa and, before you know it, your arm’s taken on the form of an octopus and knocked over your glass of red onto your lovely living room rug. How on earth do you get that Merlot stain out?

Of course, not all rug issues involve flailing limbs and alcohol. Pulls and other general damages are also problems that can reduce the effectiveness of a rug’s insulation and slip preventing capabilities, as well as generally making a rug look a bit rubbish.

Below we’ve listed a few common problems that may arise during a rug’s life time and how they can be best rectified:


Spilt liquid can often cause ‘bleeding.’ What can happen is that it can go through the rug and onto the mat material underneath. As this is normally made from cheaper materials and dyes, this could cause them to run throughout the rest of the rug. Relax, there is a simple resolution. Re-clean the area with a rug shampoo and allow to work in.


Stop! We can see you, tugging at that pull on your rug, so stop it! If a strand of yarn does annoyingly come lose from the weave of the rug, grab a pair of sharp scissors and carefully cut it off. Yes, it is tempting to pull out the pull, so to speak. But in the long run trimming will reduce the likelihood of more pulls.


Like with pulls, burns from cigarettes or flying embers from a log fire should also be dealt with a pair of sharp scissors. Once you’ve trimmed it out, whack some detergent on it and give it a rinse.

Damage from Insects

Dust mites, moths, beetles. Even if you do love every one of Earth’s creatures, insects like this are annoying when it comes to our furniture. How can you keep them away from your rugs? Once a year spray them with a pesticide spray; simple.


Own up, how many of you have ever flapped a rug out of a door or window to give it a good airing? It’s ok, we’ve all done it! But did you know that by doing this it could break the yarn in a rug’s backing? Giving it a ruddy good beating will always be the best way to rid your rug of dust.


If you do spill wine (or any other liquid for that matter, we’re by no means suggesting that alcohol is the only beverage in your home!) onto a rug, shrinkage is inevitable. Liquid causes the weaves in rugs to, in essence, loosen and ultimately shrink. Unfortunately there is no real way of rectifying this, however it is believed by many that the overall quality of the rug actually improves over time. Where it is necessary, simply cut the mat underneath your rug down to size.

If you’ve got any other tips and advice or have experienced any problems we’ve not mentioned, let us know! Follow us on Twitter @RugMerchant or e-mail

Posted 21 hours ago By steve cantlay

In December we posted an article arguing why we think wool is like the Swiss Army knife of materials when it comes to choosing your next rug. So why are we bringing this up again heading into April?read more...

In December we posted an article arguing why we think wool is like the Swiss Army knife of materials when it comes to choosing your next rug. If you missed it, click here to glance through.

Before we begin, let’s just consider one thing; we wrote that article about wool, a thick material associated with knitted jumpers and warmth, in December. That’s right, in the height of winter! It seems mad, then, that we’re even thinking about wool at all heading into April/Spring/Easter, but that appears to be something that even meteorological stalwart Michael Fish is still scratching his head about as he’s been looking out of his window over the last few weeks.

Nevertheless, we must come to terms with the fact that even though, this time last year, we were sat in gardens wearing shorts and sunglasses and slapping on the Piz Buin, Easter 2013 is likely to be spent at home, in front of the fire and in several layers of clothing. And, if you consider that you’ll be using your boilers and heating for longer than you anticipated this year, keeping warm will come at a price.

So, whilst you may be looking to purchase a rug that can add a touch of style to your floors this spring and summer, thanks to the predictably unpredictable British weather you may also need to get a wintery one in, too.

This brings us back to wool. In our previous post, we discussed how wool gives you that natural and authentic look and feel that any artificial alternative could ever deliver. It’s true, those thick strands are a sign of pure quality and wool is also completely recyclable, as well as being highly durable and extremely long lasting.

And that thickness has other benefits, too. wool can create real warmth which is ideal in cold temperatures like the ones that we’re currently experiencing (what are the chances that the UK will probably still have a hosepipe ban in a month’s time, by the way?). Consequently, wool can become a real heat trap and can help to improve insulation and reduce energy consumption. Ok, so it’s unlikely to save you enough money to be able to go abroad in search of ‘normal’ weather, but it is certainly something to consider as part of your wider energy saving measures.

That’s why we believe our various wool collections could be worth a look. From our Grovesnor Collection that offers a range of contemporary, modern products, to our Lotus Premium rugs that display more traditional designs, we’ve got wool products that can help keep you warm until our weather becomes more ‘balmy’ and less ‘barmy’.

At least our Easter Eggs won’t melt this year...

Posted 15 days ago By steve cantlay

Any change in decor can be complimented with a stunning rug and we’re confident that we’ve got the product you’re looking for, no matter where in your home you want to make more...

The bare tree branches of winter are starting to look a tad more colourful, the sky no longer resembles the Black Hole of Calcutta by 5pm and the rolling slopes of the British countryside are awash with sheep tending to their lambs.

That’s right, spring time is upon us. The changing of the seasons always brings with it new possibilities and, in the case of spring, the knowledge that we are edging ever closer to summer. And this is the time of the year where many of us will raid our arsenal of cleaning products, don a pair of Marigold’s and give our homes a much needed spring clean.

Ok, so that Good Housekeeping 1970’s image of spring cleaning with a duster and a pinny might be a little outdated. Plus, it’s not like we’ve let our homes develop into an environment that the set producers of Tenko would be proud of, is it? Nevertheless, many of us still take this opportunity to give our homes a little TLC.

And if you are thinking about giving your kingdom a little sprucing up, you may also be thinking about redecorating or making subtle changes to your decor. Those long summer nights are just around the corner and you’ll no longer need those winter features to create a warm and cosy feeling when you’re relaxing of an evening.

At, you’re sure to find the perfect rug for your home. Any change in decor can be complimented with a stunning rug and we’re confident that we’ve got the product you’re looking for, no matter where in your home you want to make changes. That’s why we’ve got some ideas for each room of your home:

Living Room

Not only is this the place where you spend most of your time, but it’s also the place that you’re guests and visitors will likely spend most of their time in your home, too. Therefore, choosing the perfect rug for this room is vital. For this it really depends on your existing colour scheme. If you’re living room is already alive with big, bold colours, a rug with simple tones and patterns can offset this perfectly (such as our cream Balotelli). However, if your decor mainly consists of neutral shades, a big statement rug can really bring your room to life and make for a great conversation piece; how about our Retro Line Pop Art inspiration?

Dining Room

In terms of shape, this will all depend on your furniture layout. Round rugs will suit a round table, rectangular ones for rectangular tables and so on. However, in terms of colour and design, this should be fairly straight forward, particularly if your dining room is rich in wood furniture. Using the tone of this wood can give you great ideas for the mood that you want to create. So how about something like our Agra Twist Gold to create a luxurious feel at meal times? However, as long as your rug’s colour doesn’t clash with the tone of your wood furniture, it’s pretty much free rein in this area of your home!


Rugs in the kitchen aren’t for everyone. Adding the right one here is also entirely dependent on your taste and the current aesthetics of your kitchen. However, we strongly recommend a rug with an underlay, given that this will be an environment with significant footfall, not to mention the hazards of boiling water and sharp objects. All of our Kitchen Rugs can have underlay added to them for extra sureness under foot.


Our Runners section should have something for you to create that perfect effect for welcoming guests. A stunning piece of floor art running along your hall or up your staircase can create an immediate impression with your guests and can send out a big statement.


Like the kitchen, a rug in the bathroom won’t be something sought after by all. However, many enjoy the warmth a rug can bring to their feet in the morning on a cold stone or tiled bathroom floor. Plus, a rug in the bathroom really can look as creative and different as you like. This is a room where you might bathe after a long day and so having a rug which can help you to relax and unwind is important. We do have some rugs in our Washable collection that would make the perfect addition to most bathrooms. All that is important to remember for this room is to choose a rug that’s thick and durable to soak up moisture.


Unlike most of the other rooms in your home, the bedroom is yours and yours only. And there really is nothing better in the morning, even in the summer, when you’re waking up, with your feet a bit chilly, then to sink them into a soft, warm, shaggy rug when you rise. They’ve really come back into fashion in recent years and many are adding them to bedrooms for the sensuality and warmth that they can bring. The products in our Dumroo collection has rugs made from sumptuous materials and would be the perfect addition to any bedroom.

If you like any of our ideas, or you’ve got some great ones of your own, we’d love to hear them!

Spring a surprise in your home this season with a new rug.

Posted 1 day ago By steve cantlay

It won’t be long now until spring has officially sprung across the UK, and the days will become longer, the weather brighter, and morale more more...
It won’t be long now until spring has officially sprung across the UK, and the days will become longer, the weather brighter, and morale more upbeat.

With the beginning of a new season comes the inevitable ending of another, and now that winter is facing its close, as are the interior design trends that defined homes all over the country during these festive and snow-laden months.

The rich, opulent tones of dark plum, burgundy and teal are soon to be replaced by brighter and livelier palettes. Particularly, spring is all about incorporating a fresh and revitalised look and by investing in a few key accents incorporating this trend, you can efficiently and cost-effectively channel the season in your own home.

As has been proven for decades, rugs are one of the most favoured ways of brightening a room and giving it a brand new lease of life. Whether understated and traditional or bold and vibrant, rugs are still proving to be perhaps the most versatile and popular piece of decor in the interior design world. 

In-keeping with spring 2013’s light and airy look, opting for low pile floor coverings is highly recommended. Anything too high pile will create a warm-looking and cosy environment, which, while welcoming and attractive, isn’t akin to this year’s spring trends.

Just as inviting are spring’s various light shades of green and mustard-yellows, mixed in with neutral creams and off-whites. Incorporating a seaside look with sky blues and pale whites is another well-liked trend – especially in more compact rooms; to make them appear more spacious and appealing.

Our Elements collection is perfect for incorporating the green-yellow look, especially in living rooms; while the circular blue designs on our website are perfect for accentuating a seaside-esque bedroom. Combining a room-enhancing rug with a new matching set of table lamps, a few wall canvases and an airy bedspread or throw will instantly turn any room into a spring haven.

Browse our website to see the spring rug designs we have available, and turn your home into a stylish sanctuary this season.

Posted 20 days ago By steve cantlay