I rarely have the opportunities others get to work with sponsors and companies, and with my ridiculously low budget, it means that I *really* have to pound the pavement and do lots of research to find a good deal that is also good quality. Y'all know how I love my Turkish rugs, and you also know how expensive a real one can be, so finding the right one has been a bear -- to say the least. Let me say, if I had the budget, I would message my friend Gokay at Yellowstar Carpets in Adana, Turkey where I purchased my two Yahyali rugs, and be done with it, but we are in ministry now, and we don't work for Joel Osteen:-) All kidding aside, Gokay has supplied gorgeous handmade carpets to the highest ranking U.S. dignitaries, defense personnel, celebrities and designers for years, and if you have the budget for the real thing, there is no better.
But back to my reality, I was really excited when I found ecarpetgallery on ebay. They have gorgeous handmade rugs and had some unbelievable deals on their ebay site that were not listed on their regular website.
As for ebay, the way I shop there, generally, is to "watch" what I like, but not purchase until the price goes down, which it invariably does. Not so at ecarpetgallery. After buying one rug from them, then missing out on another one I wanted, I messaged them about relisting that rug, but when they relisted it, the price, which had originally been $278 marked down to $180, suddenly jumped to $363. They did reduce it to $235, but it's hard to buy something that you could have gotten for $55 less.
After biting the bullet and buying that rug, I accidentally hit the cancel button and was not able to get them to cancel my "cancel." I practically begged them to list this rug again to no avail. In any case, I ended up still trying to buy something from them and decided on this antique Turkish "Anadol" overdyed rug in a gorgeous pink shade. I imagined this layered on my jute rug with my white furniture and the pink Chinese silk fabric I inherited.
As pretty as it was, when it arrived, it was not the shade the photos portrayed. It definitely had a purple/fuschia cast, and while I loved it, it just did not work with anything I already had. So, I had to return it. At this point, I was well aware that these people were more than likely getting irritated with me, so I hesitantly hit the "return" button. They responded quickly, though, and FedEx should be here to pick it up in a few days.
As you can see it just didn't blend with the Chinese silk, which at this point was just draped across a pillow as I hadn't decided to make pillows yet.
I needed to find something affordable, so I stumbled onto RUGSUSA and their spring 75% off sale. I ordered the Windsor Damla overdyed rug in a 4' x 6', which was on sale for $75. I was so happy when I got it. Even though this is machine made synthetic and not an "authentic" overdyed rug, it is beautiful. It also has a rubber backing which is great for here in the music room.
I liked it so much, I went back and put the 8' x 9' version in my cart, which was on sale at around $245 but did not purchase, and it was gone by morning. Joss and Main had the same size listed at $394, so there is quite a difference for someone on a budget.
Needless to say, no one else had that size at that price anywhere, so I ended up going to Overstock and ordering the same rug in a 5 x 8 for $208. It should arrive next week.
Quite honestly, If I had my pick, I would take this one from Gokay's shop, Yellowstar Carpets:-)
RUGSUSA also has this "Narcissa" rug I *love* but even with the 20% discount, it is still $2,127 and way beyond my budget.
So what does all this mean for you?
1. Shop around, shop around, shop around. There are so many options out there and you have to know what's out there in order to really compare.
2. If you have the budget, get the real thing. You can't go wrong that way, and you'll have an investment piece. I am *so* glad I purchased the Turkish rugs from Gokay when I did have the budget because they will never go out of style and will last forever.
3. If you don't have the budget, it doesn't mean you have to do without. Repeat step number one and compare until you find the best price. I have found the *exact* same item listed on ebay, Overstock, Joss and Main, etc., and at very different prices. Sometimes the same item will have a different name, but if you know what you're looking for, you will spot it, whatever it's called, and can compare pricing. For example, the same size "Damla" rug I bought at RUGSUSA for $75 was listed on Joss and Main as the "Delia" for $124. Be patient because you might have to wait until it goes on sale. On the other hand, you have to jump on it when the right price hits because prices are constantly changing. I have actually bought beautiful 9' x 12' antique Persian rugs in the $75 - $250 range, so it is possible, but only with
some a lot of effort.
4. Shop online. I have found, at least in my area, that I will get the best deal online. Period. Of course, your area might be different than mine which is mostly small town and rural. It takes a lot less effort to look online also, and most stores, even local, have websites now anyway.
5. Don't limit your options. I found that because I specifically wanted a "pink overdyed rug," I severely limited my options. There were more good deals in aqua, ivory and lime green for some reason. So if you are more open to color and size, you'll be able to find something easier and much more quickly.
I love Turkish rugs with passion and quite honestly would have them everywhere in all different colors if I could. I'll even admit to being a rug snob. I like the real thing -- wool or silk/handmade, and it was hard to give up a handmade rug for a machine made option. Even though I settled on a machine made rug, it was still made in Turkey so I don't feel *that* bad about it:-)
All that to say, don't give up looking just because you don't find something right away. You never know what you'll run across. And if you can't find what you're looking for, goodness knows, I probably can at this point:-)
I'll be joining: