Recently when my mom and I were cleaning out all of my storage units that I had accumulated while we lived in our tiny condo, I came across one of my favorite things ever. It’s a Turkish kilim that I purchased in Istanbul many years ago while I was living in Turkey.
I don’t think that pictures (and especially my pictures) do this thing justice. It’s really a gorgeous piece with beautiful, rich colors.
The sad thing is that it’s been stuck in a box and I’ve gotten absolutely no use out of it for the last seven years. So I really want to find a way to use it in our house.
Two things I absolutely do not want to do with it are…
Put it on the floor.
Kilims are very thin. They’re flat-woven rugs, so they don’t have any kind of weight or pile to help them keep their shape or stay put. Now imagine a thin, flat-woven rug in a home where one person is rolling around in a wheelchair, and you have a recipe for disaster…or at the very least, a recipe for immense daily frustration.
Hang it on the wall.
When I posted it on Facebook the other day, sooooooo many people suggested that I hang it on the wall.
That’s a lovely idea, but here’s the deal. I hung this kilim on the wall in our first three homes — our first apartment that we lived in after we got married, our first house that we had built in Oregon, and the rental house that we lived in right after we moved to Waco.
As wonderful of an idea as it is to hang it on the wall, I absolutely cannot fathom recycling that decade-old decorating idea in our new house. I want the ideas I incorporate here to be fresh and new for us (for the most part), not recycled.
So that leads me to the two options I’m seriously considering…
The Ottoman Option
Until last night, I had pretty much decided that I wanted to use the kilim to cover an ottoman for our living room. I really do love a kilim-covered ottoman, and I think it would be fun to make one from scratch, especially using a kilim that has sentimental value to me.
I would want to make something similar to this one from The Marlborough Rug Company.
I love those beautiful stained legs and the nailhead trim!
The “pro” to this option are that it would finally get the kilim out of a box and into my home where I could actually enjoy it. The “con” is that with it in the living room, it would be right smack dab in the middle of the room, and one of the first things you see when you walk through the front door. In other words, something this colorful and bold would certainly have to set the stage for the rest of the decorating in that room. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but just something I need to consider.
And then there’s the other option…
The Headboard Option
My mom stopped by for a bit yesterday, and we were talking about different options for the kilim. I picked it up and carried it into the bedroom and draped it over the head of the bed, but once we reached the bedroom, the kilim talk took a back seat to the stained wood bed frame talk since it was the first time she was seeing the bed frame I had built.
When she left, I just left the kilim on the bed without really giving it much thought. Then last night when I walked into the bedroom to get ready for bed, I stopped in my tracks. The kilim looked so beautiful with the dark stained bed frame. So I grabbed my camera and started snapping a few pictures. (Obviously my cat approves. I’m pretty sure she slept there all afternoon and evening.)
I mean, the dark wood complimented the rich colors in the kilim beautifully, and I could just imagine the kilim-upholstered headboard surrounded by a rich stained wood frame. It’s almost like they were made to go together!
So now I’m leaning towards the headboard idea, but I’m still undecided. Obviously it would throw a wrench into my original decorating plans for this room (mainly just the accent fabric that I chose, which unfortunately, I’ve already ordered) but it might be worth it to change course this early considering how beautifully the kilim and stained wood bed frame go together.
For the record…
Regardless of which of these projects I do, I will have to cut the kilim if I want to end up with a really professional-quality product. And I’m okay with that. I figure it’s better to cut it and use it than to stick it in a box for another seven years.
And no, I’m not interested in selling it. I was surprised at how many people on the Facebook post said, “Don’t cut it! Sell it, and use the money to purchase a fabric that you really want!”
That completely misses the point. The point is that I absolutely love this kilim. It has sentimental value to me (which is pretty much the only value it has since I bought it for only $120 — it’s not a precious antique kilim or anything like that) and I want to keep it. I just want to find a way that I can actually use it and enjoy it in my house in a way that doesn’t involve having it on the floor or hanging it on the wall.
So in my mind, the headboard idea is in the lead. But if you know me at all, you know that that could change in an instant.