Something magical occurs when artistry and risk are allowed to commingle. In 2010, Fort Street Studio did just that, debuting their first limited edition collection of hand-woven, 150-knot wild silk carpets woven with metallic soumak flat-woven accents.
Founders Janis Provisor and Brad Davis first saw this combination of weaving styles in the carpet reproductions for the restoration of the Qianlong Emperor’s quarters in the Forbidden City. Upon reading about it, the couple searched for the source of the metallic yarn. After a miraculous discovery of the source, they set about to use it in a modern design that updates this luxurious quality fit for an Emperor.
Glimmering applies heirloom techniques, including the 17th century soumak flatweave in golden metallic yarn, to a richly layered and highly complex pattern never seen before in modern flooring. The result was not just a weaving tour de force, but a design that evoked and captured that magical moment at dawn and twilight, when light first dances on water.
The design Toll continues in the same manner: 150-knot wild silk pile (30% finer than the Studio’s standard wild silk) with soumak details, this time in tin. The patterning is an updated reference to English Arts & Crafts; a nod to creating a “new traditional.” Ornate in its motif and complex in its execution, Toll evokes a time when artistry and craftsmanship governed.
Due to the intricacy of pattern & difficulty in hand-weaving these luxe carpets, only an extremely limited number can be produced each year. Please contact your nearest showroom for more information and current availability.
In 2014, Fort Street Studio presented a collection of three carpet designs for exhibition at Design Junction London for AfghanMade, in conjunction with Wallpaper* Magazine. “AfghanMade is a project to revive century-old Afghan weaving traditions, which Fort Street Studio fully supports,” said Studio founder Brad Davis. “It is a reflection on the past that puts forward a positive statement for the future of Afghan carpets, while still creating designs that appeal to a contemporary audience. It is a concept very near and dear to Fort Street Studio’s core values – taking something old and making it new.”
The new carpet designs are based on a reinterpretation of a classic and traditional Middle Eastern motif, the shield or medallion. The designs remain true to the artistic core inherent in every Fort Street Studio carpet, created in close collaboration between the two artists. They began with an initial discussion of philosophical, artistic and technical issues, then move to rendering this vision in watercolor, culminating in the transformation to a weavable pattern.
All three carpets were hand-knotted in Afghan wool at a 6’ x 8’ size for exhibition. The couple took advantage of the high-quality hand-processed wool the region is known for in their color selection, and in some areas even utilized the un-dyed, natural wool. “The character and quality of the wool informed the design and color selection,” said Janis Provisor. “For example, for one design we selected wool that is naturally very dark, and dyed it further to create a rich, mottled background.”
In 2010, Fort Street Studio co-Creative Directors Janis Provisor and Brad Davis were tapped to create a collection of exceptional wild silk carpets for Hermès Maison, the new home furnishings and accessories division of renowned French luxury goods company Hermès.
“We began working on the designs in early 2009, visiting the archives of Hermès and steeping ourselves in the ethos and history of the company,” says Janis Provisor. “Then with our aesthetic imprint, we came up with three equestrian-inspired designs, in a nod to the long standing heritage of Hermès.”
The designers made six carpets – three designs, each interpreted in two colorways – to be produced exclusively by Fort Street Studio in 120-knot hand-woven Dandong wild silk. The carpets complement and expand on the offerings of Hermès Maison, which include reissued furniture by Jean-Michele Frank and new pieces by architects Antonio Citteiro and Denis Montel.
Please contact your nearest Hermès store location for purchasing information.