Karastan loans World's Fair rug to Chicago Macy's

Retail Editor 7, October 19, 2010

Dalton, Ga. - Seventy-seven years since Karastan presented its multi-colored panel Kirman 791 at the Chicago World's Fair, the company is bringing the rug back to Chicago at Macy's on State Street.

Earlier this month, attendees from the original World's Fair celebrated the grand reopening of the Macy's Fine Rug Gallery in Chicago with a special ribbon-cutting event that had as its centerpiece the Kirman 791 Karastan rug.

The original rug will be on display at the department store through Oct. 24.

It was in 1932 that Karastan first introduced its multicolor panel Kirman 791. The company said the rug's "tree of life" pattern "symbolizes divine power and perpetual life in Persian design." It was part of the Karastan Rug Collection and was labeled "The Wonder Rug of America."

The collection comprises power-loomed rugs made of worsted New Zealand wool, woven "through the back" and luster washed to simulate the hand-knotted look of the originals.

To prove the lasting quality of its rugs, Karastan wear-tested its multicolor panel Kirman 791 at the 1933-34 Chicago World's Fair. The rug was then taken to the Karastan mill in Eden, N.C., where only half of the rug was washed. "One side remained almost unrecognizable, while the washed portion returned the rug to its original beauty of 33 skein-dyed colors," Karastan noted.

The original rug has been stored at that mill until earlier this month when it was put on exhibit at the revamped Chicago Macy's store.


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