Striking upcycled sari-carpet brand hits London

In a new endeavour, Delhi-based interior designer Ishrat Sahgal is taking her new-age carpet designs to London.

Published: 07th November 2019 07:49 AM  |   Last Updated: 07th November 2019 07:49 AM   |  A+A-

Sari Silk Nile carpet in Tangerine; (top right) sari Silk yarn and Wool yarn

Sari Silk Nile carpet in Tangerine; (top right) sari Silk yarn and Wool yarn

Express News Service

Next month, Delhi-based Mishcat Co is ready to take its vibrant carpets to London with a satellite store in Marylebone. Owned and run by the mother-daughter duo, Poonam and Ishrat Sahgal, the six-year-old Mishcat Co was the brainchild of the latter, a Rhode Island School of Design graduate. 

Founder and CEO Ishrat, 30, who flits between Delhi and London, says the London studio will appear like a smaller version of their studio in Jangura Extension. “Here people can come for design consultancy and witness the carpets in an interior setting.” 

Mischat procures their saris from independent sari weavers in the south and a team of 15-20 weavers in Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh turn these into hand-knotted carpets on looms. Whilst weaving a sari there’s always a meter or less leftover, which is usually discarded despite being of good quality.

“We work with this leftover yarn and use it to hand knot our carpets. This yarn is sorted into colour families, then woven into skeins, and used in our carpets. The hues of carpets are different each time, which makes each carpet one-of-a-kind art piece.”

With the inclusion of wool and sari silk carpets in their repertoire, they are in the process of using sari silk for bed headboards and furniture surfaces. “We are considering venturing into aspects such as wallpapers, throw pillows, and accent pieces that complement our carpets,” Ishrat adds.

Ishrat’s younger brother used to call her Mishcat when they were kids and that grew to become the firm’s name. After her graduation, she opened her practice Ishrat Sahgal Interiors in New Delhi.

“While working on projects here, I felt that the floor covering/carpet space could do with a bit of rustling up. Moreover, I’ve always been interested in supporting Indian craft, sustainability, innovation and everything interior design. I was also drawn to silk saris as raw material. One thing led to the next, and Mishcat was born as the sweet spot between all of these passions,” she recalls.

Between the two, Ishrat handles the creative, designs, brand strategy and social media, while Poonam – previously did consultancy assignments for the UN and the WHO – takes care of the daily operations, backend and HR.

COO Poonam, 60, says on an average, they produce 20-30 carpets per month. “We pride ourselves in being a boutique design house and not a commercial one,” she adds. Mishcat Co’s clientele are primarily boutique hotel chains, art institutions, design professionals and private clients across the world. 

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