Ten Thousand Villages to host major ‘rug event’

  • Feb. 24, 2016 3:25 p.m.

Staff and volunteers of the Red Deer-based Ten Thousand Villages are gearing up for one of their milestone yearly events – a major rug sale featuring works from Pakistan. The Rug Event runs March 4th to March 19th.

On the evening of March 4th, folks are invited to come out for ‘From Loom to Living Room: The History and Stories Behind Bunyaad Fair Trade Rugs’ which will be held at 7 p.m. at Ten Thousand Villages in downtown Red Deer (4925 – 48th St.)

The evening is ideal for anyone considering an Oriental rug purchase or who would like to learn more about the art of Oriental rug making, rug care and room design.

“It’s a major event – it’s been a year and a half since we had our last event, and we had more than 2,000 lbs of rugs come in which equates to 200 rugs. This year, we should have even more,” said Tina Bale, the store’s manager. It’s a wonderful opportunity for local shoppers to purchase a rug of outstanding quality while making a profound difference in another person’s life. “They are all hand done in the traditional method, so it’s keeping the artistry alive while providing for the people who make them,” she said, adding that families often work together with others in their communities to create the rugs.

“Artisans in Pakistan earn a living wage and North American consumers get an excellent quality rug that has an impact felt around the world.

“They are so beautiful – and when you find out where they come from and what it takes to get it to your home, it just makes them that much more beautiful and cherished.”

From intricate florals to hand-spun natural dye wool tribals, every Bunyaad rug has been designed and hand-knotted by highly-skilled and fairly paid adults. “They will literally last for 100 years. They are definitely an investment piece that can be passed down.”

Those interested in attending the Friday night talk are asked to reserve a spot by calling 403-341-0178.

According to a press release, in many North African, Middle Eastern and Asian factories, workers toil for hours in difficult conditions and for little pay on these types of rugs. And although the situation is improving thanks to global watchdog organizations, children continue to be sold into the industry as slave labour.

That’s where this sale comes in – Ten Thousand Villages partners with Bunyaad, a fair trade organization in Pakistan. Gwen Repeta, Canada rug coordinator, will be sharing the incredible story of Bunyaad rugs during the March 4th evening event.

“We’re seeing a lot of new, trendy designs from Bunyaad. It’s very cool what’s coming down the pipe,” said Repeta, who visited the Lahore facility in January of 2015.

It can take master designers, knotters, washers and finishers months – or even years – to complete each Bunyaad rug. And it’s that workmanship and quality that makes each one so durable, she said.

“A lot of people will throw their rug on the ground and then think, ‘Oh, I can’t walk on it’,” says Repeta. But they shouldn’t worry about wrecking their floor covering. Repeta has seen the metal blades and spiky brushes used to scrub each rug after it has been knotted, sheared and even burned to rid it of fluff and other irregularities.

Ten Thousand Villages creates opportunities for artisans in developing countries to earn income by bringing their products and stories to local markets through long-term, fair trading relationships.

According to the Ten Thousand Villages web site, Bunyaad was started in the late 1960s by a Pakistani Baptist pastor and rug artisan as a way to create and sustain rug knotting jobs in rural villages.

Centered around Lahore, Pakistan, Bunyaad works with both Christian and Muslim artisans, giving people the opportunity to work together, transcending differences of religion, custom and tradition. In this manner, Bunyaad is a peace-building project in addition to being a job creation project, organizers say.

As mentioned, Bunyaad guarantees a fair wage for their artisans.

“In a rural economy that normally leaves people in very uncertain financial circumstances, reliable and consistent payment fosters unprecedented financial planning capacity. And because artisans are paid per knot, rather than speed, it behooves them to make high quality, high knot count pieces. All of this enables artisans to focus on doing quality work with the knowledge that they have the security of a fair income to care for their families’ needs.”

Bale also mentioned that the store will be having an extensive jewellery sale on during the rug sale as well.

For more information about the Rug Event or Ten Thousand Villages in general, call 403-341-0178 or find them on facebook at ‘Ten Thousand Villages Canada’.

editor@reddeerexpress.com

Just Posted

Local youth invited to check out ‘Peacebuilders’

Initiative aims to promote rights and dignity for all

Local municipalities launch 2A South Regional Transit

Communities of Innisfail, Penhold, and Springbrook now connected by transit thanks to pilot project

Getting your passport has been made easier

Government of Canada doubles number of locations where Canadians can get their passports

Police officer assaulted during traffic stop

Chasetin Morin of Red Deer faces several charges

Live nativity pageant takes place Dec. 18th to 20th

Outdoor pageant takes place in the evening at 7, 7:30 and 8 p.m. at 8 Keast Way

Story of the Year: Deadly Humboldt Broncos bus crash

The Canadian Press annual survey of newsrooms across the country saw 53 out of 129 editors cast their votes for the Humboldt Broncos bus crash.

‘A start:’ Alberta critical of Ottawa’s $1.6B package for ailing energy sector

A further $150 million is to be used for clean growth and infrastructure projects

Two-year-old attacked by cougar near Mission, B.C.

Boy not seriously injured in incident on Monday afternoon

Trump signs order to create US Space Command

President Donald Trump signs an executive order to create a U.S. Space Command.

Groups preparing new pipeline legal challenge, argue government’s mind made up

A Vancouver-based environment charity is readying itself to go back to court if the federal government reapproves the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.

Notorious Toronto triple killer gets third consecutive life sentence

Dellen Millard gets third consecutive life sentence for father’s death.

‘Subdued’ housing market predicted in B.C. through 2021: report

The Central 1 Credit Union report predicts “rising but subdued sales” over the next three years, with little movement in median home prices.

A journey through 2018’s top pop culture moments

Was there any pop culture this year? Of course there was.

‘A stronger Alberta:’ Ottawa announces $1.6B for Canada’s oil and gas sector

Price of Alberta oil plummeted so low that Alberta’s Premier said Canada was practically giving it away

Most Read