Straw on the Floor!

1st March 2022

Can you imagine finding a beautifully natural flooring solution that is both sustainable and biodegradable and at the same time sturdy and durable, at an affordable price point? Sounds like a tall order? Well it’s not!

Today’s natural fibre flooring, woven from the natural materials such as seagrass, jute and sisal, hits all those marks…and it’s so on trend!

Straw or rush flooring has been a staple in cultures across the world for hundreds, if not thousands of years…and even in the UK during the medieval period rushes were commonly used on the floor to provide warmth, softness and moisture absorption. Sometimes the leaves and stems from these plants were just strewn on the floor and in other instances they were woven into matting. Either way rushes were used to keep earth floors clean and added a touch of functionality and beauty to a home. In castles and early stately homes, woven rush carpeting was laid down for everyday use and then more expensive carpeting was placed over the top for special occasions so the rush flooring served as a primitive ‘underlay’!

In England these mediaeval mats were made from hand braided bullrushes stitched together with jute twine and were known as ‘apple mats’.  Although this practice has mostly died out there are still one or two people who are  keeping this centuries old craft alive in the UK today.

In recent years we have seen a massive revival in the use of natural fibres for flooring products with rush, straw, hemp, seagrass, sisal and jute at the top of the list. Fibre ‘carpets’ are also finding a ‘home’ in a wide diversity of spaces from hotels, meeting halls, offices… and are now widely fitted in private houses. Produced in wide widths and with a cushioned backing fiber ‘carpets’ can be fitted wall to wall just as with many other carpeting types. These eco-friendly woven natural fibres are amazingly textured, adding dimension to your decor. Wonderful tactility underfoot and come in a vast array of neutral tones, making them perfect for both rustic and contemporary settings. So whether you’re a minimalist who wants to add character to a setting without the clutter, or a maximalist who loves layering texture upon texture… natural fibre flooring, whether a rug or fitted ‘carpet’ might just be something you should consider!

1st March 2022

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