ELEGANCE FROM THE GROUND UP

BY CHASE WADE | PHOTOGRAPHY BY HOLGER OBENAUS

While browsing at Farzin Rugs, you are surrounded by a hand-selected collection, more than 25 years in the making, consisting of over 5,000 Oriental and decorative rugs, some centuries old. This Design District outpost is where luxury and history collide. To truly appreciate the globe-spanning experience that comes with each visit, you’ll first want to grab a quick lesson from the showroom’s owner and namesake, Farzin Ghalibaf. Like a curator walking through his gallery, Farzin is quick to point out what distinguishes one rug from another. Turkish rugs are intricate, yet understated, with dusty colors throughout. Persian rugs are quite the opposite— colorful, complicated and quick to grab the eye’s attention. Farzin’s expertise can even decipher a rug’s original clientele. For instance, Oriental rugs crafted for English nobles are often ornate, rich with striking reds and blues.

“These rugs are truly pieces of art,” Farzin says. “I like to compare them to owning a Picasso or a Matisse. It’s rare to see such craftsmanship in today’s design world. Some of these rugs took years to construct, and I don’t think we’ll ever see that kind of attention to detail again.”

Ghalibaf, a name that literally translates to “rug maker,” hails from four generations of rugobsessed family. It was his great-great-grandfather who started the tradition when he opened his own rug factory in Tabriz, Iran, an area regarded for its rich history in rug making. Raised in Europe, Farzin earned a degree in design before establishing his own identity in the world of interior design and architecture. It’s this design expertise that truly comes in handy when wading through the showroom’s sea of options.

“For most projects, I try to grab three or four options that I think will work for the client,” Farzin says. “A lot of my customers are designers, but I love to see people just walk into the store. These rugs are the centerpieces of any room. Sometimes, people will pick out a rug before they even build a property.”

As local designers jet off to New York or Los Angeles to do their rug shopping, Farzin Rug’s impressive collection is a destination in and of itself. With a fair mix of antique, semi-antique and old Oriental rugs, Dallas designers might find it best to skip long airport security lines and tour the Design District’s offerings instead.

“Dallas has been, and still is, a hub for the design world,” Farzin says. “People come from all over the world to visit the Design District. I have so many clients that will search all over for the perfect rug, but always end up back with me. Even as interior design starts to become more modern and streamlined, nothing can really match owning rugs like these.”

Of course, with centuries of wear and tear, antique rugs can need some restoration. Within his showroom, Farzin has the skilled personnel who can assist with the repair of these works of art.

Farzin likens the purchase of an authentic Oriental rug to a good business investment. “Oriental rugs are often passed down from generation to generation,” he says. Free from the shackles of ever-changing design trends, Oriental rugs have been, and will remain, a mainstay in the modern American home.

Chase Wade is a Texas-based freelance writer. Drop him a note at chasewadewrites.com.