Rugs that Really Make a Difference

Of all the shopping I’ve done for my house in the last year, rugs have definitely been the most difficult of all selections. I have hardwood floors in nearly every room, so they’re all but essential. Yet I’m too picky to select just any old floor covering, so finding the perfect ones have been a bit of a challenge!

Now, throw in the ethical issue of who makes them. The arts of hand-weaving and hand-knotting rugs are some of the most painstaking and time-intensive crafts in the world, and most American companies outsource this labor to countries where this skill is practically a birthright””faraway locales like India and Nepal. Often, when shopping for items for ourselves and our homes, we do not take into account the many factories that employ children to do this hard labor””a practice that is, quite simply: inhumane and illegal.

I received a notice in the mail last week that provided an eye-opening look at this signifiant world issue and introduced me to a company called GoodWeave, a noble initiative backed by a nonprofit organization known as RugMark USA, which also extends its focus to the issues of unfair wages and environmental concerns.

GoodWeave has partnered with a variety of major rug manufacturers to get children away from the looms and back to childhood play. Fittingly, a GoodWeave-certified business earns the RugMark seal of approval for upstanding business practices, and the rugs they make come with a GoodWeave patch on the back to serve as your peace of mind for your next rug purchase.

There are more than 70 GoodWeave-certified rug manufacturers and 1,500 GoodWeave-certified showrooms and retailers across the U.S. and Canada, a number of which can be found right here in Atlanta. Better still, GoodWeave rugs come in an endless array of colors, styles, materials and price points, just like the inventory of rugs we’re accustomed to scouring. Shoppers can visit for a full list of retailers, where you can conveniently search by ZIP Code or buy online. Locally, you can visit showrooms like Verde Home, Rugs by Robinson, Stanton Home Furnishings and Designer Carpets to find rugs that will be as lovely on your floors as they are good for the world. I am enamored with so many of them. Here are a few of my favorite GoodWeave picks from around town:

Verde Home is a retailer of GoodWeave-certified New Moon Rugs. Two of my favorites are the Trinidad rug in Citrus, part of the Mirage collection, and the Persia rug in Polonaise, part of the company’s Classic line.

Angela Adams designs some stellar contemporary options. I am loving this hand-tufted wool Ocean/Seaglass rug and hand-woven wool Ruthie/Seaglass rug at the moment. You can get these through Stanton Home Furnishings.

Designer Carpets on Peachtree Hills Avenue carries Odegard Carpets, such as this Donghia for Odegard Truffula rug and artist editions, like the Somoroff II, by Michael Somoroff.

Rugs by Robinson at the Atlanta Decorative Arts Center carries GoodWeave-certified Lapchi rugs, such as this Honeycomb rug in Ginger and Rosemary rug in Rain, part of the Tribal and Transitional collections, respectively.

Other organizations, like Care & Fair and Machik, have similar humanitarian missions that many businesses in Atlanta support, so ask around if you’re unsure of you favorite store’s social responsibility. Best of all, you can give something back to the world without giving up stylish looks! Visit for more information.