That was fast. I expected a little tea, a little chitchat to find out what I really wanted, then maybe a repeat visit when they had pulled together a selection. Nope. The guy looked at my photo of the room.
Then he asked one question. “Do you prefer red or blue?” I said it depended on the rug, but maybe red. Jen showed him a photo of a Hereke (flowing pattern, nice colors) that I had said I liked and we were off. The fifth rug he pulled out was The One.
Someone in California must have done a shamanic ritual to draw this Persian rug to me. Persians are single-knotted, while Turkish ones are double-knotted. I came here looking for a nice, sturdy, Turkish double-knotted job for my sturdy country house. As you can see, the fine-weave Persian single knots won out. I’m already fine with that.
Should you find yourself in Istanbul looking for a rug while looking to avoid your basic rug merchant, I can absolutely recommend 5K Rug Store. Granted, I went with Jen, who is a friend of nearly two decades and a part owner. But I think anyone would have a hassle-free experience and, if the right rug appears, a fair price.
Update, New Year’s Eve: the rug has arrived, 27 kilos in a pretty small package.
The room now looks like Grandma’s house, if either grandma had had money and super-conservative taste. No question, it’s conservative, but I like it anyway. Now I have to get used to the idea of actually putting furniture on the rug.