These rugs were a venture of Tim's wife Karen. She discovered this ancient rug-making tradition whilst living and studying in Granada, Spain in her early twenties. Later she started a company selling the rugs. Tim is now making the remaining stock of these rugs available to Raw Honey Shop customers at 25% off. There's quite a story behind them.
Back in the early 1980s, intrepid soul that my wife was, she set out all alone, and as bold as brass for Andalucia, following in the footsteps of Laurie Lee, in his famous book 'As I Walked Out One Midsummer Morning.' She was 20.
After various adventures, she reached Granada in southern Spain and then set out on the road to the coast. It is a beautiful road, that winds its way through the Sierra Nevada mountain range. In winter, you look up and snow-capped mountains tower over you, it really is stunningly beautiful.
One thing that Karen noticed on the long bus journey south on the narrow winding road to the coast, was that villagers hung out what she thought were brightly coloured blankets on their balconies in the morning. The villages were festooned with them.
She thought little more of it at the time and once clear of the mountain, the last stop on the bus journey was in a sleepy coastal village called Castell del Ferro, which she thought was a village that Laurie Lee referred to in his book. (It wasn't.)
She ended up spending some there and later went to Granada University to study as a technical translater.
Anyway, one of the things that stuck in her mind was the blankets, which she soon discovered were actually rugs, that were mainly made of recycled cotton.
Karen always liked to know everything about the culture and what people did.
She researched these rugs, which were completely different from anything she had seen before, and learned they followed a Moorish tradition going back 1,000 years or more. Later the designs were influenced by styles coming back from the Spanish colonies in Central and South America.
Originally, when times were hard, villagers used them as blankets during the winter, which can be bitterly cold in the mountains around Granada.
Now they are made exclusively as rugs.
Rug weaving has continued as a cottage industry in Andalusia. Maybe, if you've visited the area you will have seen rugs being hand woven.
This is a very rustic style, which is beautiful and soft to the hand. They are also very practical being reversible and machine washable.
To continue the story. When Karen came back to the UK we ended up getting together as a couple although we had been friends since childhood.
She often talked about her time in Andalusia and was obsessed about the rugs, which we covered our floors with.
We ended up importing about 100 and then building a website to sell them.
However, soon after she became ill and after a long fight against cancer she passed away.
So we never really got down to selling them properly - although the website was live it was never promoted and didn't appear in the first page of google, which is essential if you want to get people to buy your product.
Others started importing the rugs, although of a poorer quality, and I forgot about them for a while and they lay boxed up in our warehouse.
But Karen would never have wanted that and I fell now is the time to move them - that's why I have knocked 25% off the price for Raw Honey Shop customers to get them cleared.