This year has been a big one for rug maker OBEETEE. One of the oldest and largest handmade rug companies in the world, it celebrated its centenary, started online retailing, associated with renowned Indian designer Raghavendra Rathore on a limited edition line, and raised Rs 30 lakhs for weavers whose livelihoods had been affected due to the pandemic. Now, as 2020 draws to a close, OBEETEE has unveiled another achievement — a collaboration with British designer Matthew Williamson.
Williamson is a celebrated name in design circles, with a career spanning 20 years in fashion. Even though he has gravitated towards interiors and decor over the recent years, his aesthetic has always been rife with unique colours and prints inspired by nature. Williamson extended the same idea to the SS’ 21 collaboration with OBEETEE, designing a limited edition line of nine carpets featuring a spectrum of colours and patterns, Indonesian dyeing techniques, Moorish design, India-inspired motifs, shades of blue and pink, and sunset hues.
“Colour and pattern can be such vital elements in both our lives and our homes. They can speak to us at aesthetic and emotional levels, elevating our homes, infiltrating through the walls, the furnishings, and of course, the floor. One of the best places to start when bringing colour and pattern into the home is with a floor covering, setting the tone and anchoring the rest of the space. Colour in all its depth and vibrancy and pattern in all its meaning, inspire me endlessly.”
The look is split into two collections, one focusing on beautifully intricate hand-knotted rugs, and the second collection uses soft tactile hand-tufted construction. Craftsmanship was a key consideration for Williamson for this line. “I am an admirer of craft in all its forms that celebrates the natural material used in the process. Working with handwoven rugs, for this reason, is dream come true for me, especially with OBEETEE as a world leader in the creation of exquisitely handcrafted rugs. OBEETEE’s respect for provenance, authenticity and unrivalled skill was a huge draw and resonates with my passion for unique and well-made homewares.”
For OBEETEE too, working with Williamson was a natural choice. “As a company we have admired Matthew’s vision throughout his career in fashion and then with his smooth transition into interior design,” says Angelique Dhama, spokesperson and chief marketing officer, OBEETEE. “Matthew has a creativity that is rarely seen, effortlessly creating designs in a kaleidoscope of colours that spark joy. He is also a passionate advocate for sustainable hand made goods, so when the opportunity arose, we were delighted to embark on this exciting venture where both companies share similar ideals.”
India has always been an inspiration for the designer, and the OBEETEE x Mathew Williamson collection is further proof. “I am endlessly inspired by the vitality and heritage of Indian design. It’s truly one of my life’s greatest privileges to have been able to visit. I would definitely say that Indian design plays a part in the inspiration for all my designs, especially in this collection. This could be the pattern or the colour combinations that I’ve always admired.”
The OBEETEE x Matthew Williamson collection is available at www.obeetee.com
All images: Courtesy OBEETEE