Mar 31, 2014
01:53 PMStyle & Design
New Bunny Williams Rugs for Dash & Albert: Beautiful Style That's Practical Too
Interior design experts and homeowners alike greeted the new Bunny Williams collaboration with Annie Selke’s Dash & Albert Rug Company and Pine Cone Hill with the type of anticipatory fanfare usually reserved for the latest spring fashion shows or a blockbuster movie from Steven Spielberg.
Months in the planning, design, manufacturing, styling, photography and cataloging production stages, the Bunny Williams for Dash & Albert collection of rugs was launched this past January at the Atlanta Gift and Home Furnishings Market and became available for purchase in February.
The collection consists of 36 “outdoor-friendly” designs, unique natural jute waves in an eco-friendly, recycled materials that are appropriate for use indoors or on covered porches, a staple of fine living in Litchfield County and elsewhere.
Bunny Williams for Pine Cone Hill is a collection of pillows and throws inspired by the travels of Williams, an interior decorating icon and best-selling author who lives in Falls Village. The collection features her favorite patterns, colors and textures. Williams says the professional relationship between herself and Selke came about organically.
“The connection to Annie Selke actually began in Litchfield County. I rented my first weekend house from her stepfather. When the chance to collaborate came about, we discovered we had much more in common than just that—we appreciated design, quality, and we both loved dogs. The inspiration for the textiles came from my travels, specifically from tile patterns and textiles I’ve admired and collected.”
Selke’s designs have been featured in hundreds of magazines, blog posts, and television segments, and she is a popular speaker at design conferences and events. In 2011, Clarkson Potter released her first book, “Fresh American Spaces,” which encourages individual self-expression through decorating. She is also the founder of the blog “Fresh American,” which offers daily tips on decorating, shopping, travel, how-to projects, cooking, and more. The 2010 Small Business Administration’s Massachusetts Small Business Person of the Year, Selke, with the help of her staff, designs her products from company headquarters in the Berkshire Hills.
The rugs in the new collection favor subtle, classic colors, blues, shades of off-white and red permeating. The patterns run the gamut from a stunning “Lucy Juniper” indoor/outdoor rug that screams understated elegance and is ideal for a large summer indoor porch to a vibrant “Marco Red Jute Soumak” woven rug that offers a rather modern presentation in a room. As the designer and Selke say, consumers can find “perky plaids, easy neutrals and fresh takes on the preppy stripe” in the collection.
Says Williams, “My job as a designer is to help make smart choices when a house is being furnished. Clients want homes they can really live in and Annie Selke’s company makes very high-quality, functional fabrics. Some of the rugs are named for my dogs. To that point, just because you need something that is durable enough for a pet, doesn’t mean you have to compromise the look.”
Rather than being a laborious process in bringing the new collection to life, Williams says it was quite the opposite, calling it “great fun” to choose the color pallets and patterns for each design.
“The indoor/outdoor rugs look like wool rugs,” says Williams. “When we received the first samples I called Annie to confirm that these rugs could, in fact, face the elements outside. She assured me that they could, and now I can attest to that as well because I’ve purchased several of the rugs for my own house.”