Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Make Rugs, Not War

Earlier this week, I was walking past a store on Clarence Street in the Byward Market that sells carpets when I suddenly stopped and had to take a closer look. At first, I couldn't believe what I was seeing when I looked at the rugs on display in the window.

This store (Canadian Rug Traders) usually sells such beautiful oriental carpets from places like India and Iran. I often look at the rugs on display with their gorgeous patterns and think how nice it would be to own one. But not today! These carpets had guns and tanks and grenades and other war symbols in their design.

A sign in the window explained that these rugs were made in Afghanistan during the recent war there. It also said that a percentage of the sale of these rugs would be donated to  Canadian soldiers who had been injured in the conflict.

They were beautifully made, hand-knotted, wool rugs. But somehow, I couldn't imagine having one on the floor, thinking about the people halfway around the world who had seen the helicopters and tanks and guns during the war and then wove these things in a pattern in a carpet so I could walk on it. But perhaps I am looking at it in the wrong way. After all, they were taking a horrible experience and turning it into something productive. They were making rugs, not war!


Ronna said...

I had a similar experience while visiting a home in Princeton, NJ. They had two rugs with helicopters all over them. Very odd.

Knatolee said...

Wow, it really makes you think, doesn't it? :(

Sarah said...

I have heard of these rugs in the early 2000's - apparently they were a very hot commodity on eBay for a while - particularly the older ones. Interesting!