Team Recreates Original Oriental Rug from the Fords’ Library

Our Fair Lane restoration team recently got a peek at a new rug, which they had custom designed and produced for Clara and Henry Ford’s library.

The rug measures about 14-by-23 feet and was designed to authentically replicate the original rug that adorned the floor of the Library about 100 years ago.

A team from Michigan-based Hagopian helped the Fair Lane staff identify the exact pattern and colors of the new rug based on old photographs and receipts.

The design, which features 44 medallions, was sent to the weavers -- a Turkmen family in Afghanistan that has been making rugs for hundreds of years. Owner Suzanne Hagopian says it was a very traditional design, and the family quickly recognized the pattern and was able to set to work.

They had to hand-spin the wool, which gives the final rug that beautiful “abrashing,” or color variations found in some Oriental rugs. The rug was hand-knotted, and from inception to finish it took more than a year and a half to complete.

Once our craftsmen finish varnishing the wood panels and trim in the library, the rug will be installed. Check back for a photo update, or watch our Facebook page here.

Learn more about the textiles at Fair Lane in our upcoming workshop on Sept. 8:

#A close-up view of the new rug in the Henry Ford's library at Fair Lane.


This photo shows the library as it was circa 1919, just after the Fords had moved in.