A few months ago I had a lovely email drop into my inbox asking if I wanted to look at these handmade felt ball rugs from Sukhi. Made by artisans in Nepal, Sukhi gives these makers an outlet to share their work, skill and craft. But that’s not all. Please do read on to discover the amazing story behind Sukhi Rugs and the people they work with. I admit, I didn’t realise the full extent of this brand at the beginning but I’m incredibly inspired by what they do, and how they operate. It’s certainly made me think twice about where I buy my rugs in the future.
Felt Ball Rugs:
Let’s start with the actual product and see if that grabs your imagination. I’ve seen felt ball rugs before and thought they looked great. With lots of house renovations going on here at the moment, I thought one would look great in my youngest daughter’s bedroom once it’s finished. Now the room’s not quite ready, so you’ll have to wait to see it in its full glory, but here’s the design and colourway I chose.
The rugs arrive packaged and labelled by their artisan maker. Mine was made by Hira (centre, above) in Nepal. I didn’t think too much of this, but Sukhi gives us the full story and background to Hira and how she works with them. They don’t have a middleman so work directly with her, paying her 2 to 3 times the average Nepalese salary and allowing her to work from home or in one of their well managed workshops. Many of the Sukhi artisans are women with young children, enabling them to earn an income as well as look after their children: once they’ve made their rug at home they are able to bring it into the workshop. Half of the Nepal team make the actual felt balls (see below) and the other half make the rugs. It’s an inspiring and worthy story worth sharing so do take a look at Hira and some of her colleagues in this film.
Made from 100% pure New Zealand wool, it is hand dyed using products which are non-toxic and non-allergenic. The Nepalese artisans then create the felt balls working alongside their friends and family and leave them to dry out in the sun. An average felt ball rug consists of 5000 felt balls!
This does vary of course depending the size and complexity of your rug, but a small basic round felt ball rug would start at about $153 or just under £100. I think that’s pretty great for something hand crafted. The larger the rug, the more they cost of course, and generally they take about 4 weeks to arrive. Shipping is included.
You can find out more about the Nepalese Felt Ball Rugs and their makers on the Sukhi website here.
And if you feel inspired to buy one, you can do so at the Sukhi shop HERE
I have sent Hira an email (all of the makers’ details are on the website) to let her know how much her skill is appreciated here in the UK.
Disclosure: I was sent the rug for free but the comments, opinions and thoughts are all mine.