You may have noticed that we’ve recently rebranded our company, with a new logo and strapline – ‘Makers of Fibre Bonded Carpets’. The reason we did this was to reinforce messages around our history, longevity, and commitment to manufacturing fibre bonded carpet, here in the UK.
The branding exercise has also given us the opportunity to review our marketing messages and to ensure that we are clearly communicating to flooring contractors the benefits of fibre bonded carpet.With so many different flooring options out there, we think there’s a great opportunity to look at why carpet has stood the test of time and why it continues to be one of the UK’s most popular flooring choices.
History of floor coverings
As far back as 6000 BC there is evidence of goats and sheep being sheared for wool and hair and it being spun and woven into a material that was used for a number of purposes, including as clothing and as a floor covering. Dating from around 1480 BC the ancient Egyptians used handlooms to make rugs. In 1000 AD Marco Polo confirmed rug making was taking place in the Middle Eastern countries that he passed through.
In the Industrial Revolution in England, textile inventions were introduced by Hargreaves, Arkwright, Crompton which included weaving wool for many purposes, including soft flooring.
Over the years, there have been many developments in man-made fibres, loom widths and machine efficiencies bringing carpet within reach of the mass market.
Fast forward to the modern era and carpet is still as popular as ever in the UK for use in many different applications. Carpet design continues to be influenced by social and economic factors and fashion. Some of the most important reasons that contractors and specifiers choose carpet are for its thermal and acoustic performance. This has led to fibre bonded carpet being specified widely in public buildings, student accommodation, retail outlets, sheltered housing and offices. People like the soft, comfortable feel underfoot, which cannot be rivalled by any other floor covering. Carpet also has benefits in terms of reducing slips, trips and falls. Many of our entrance carpets enable grit and moisture to be removed from footwear, so it doesn’t cause damage to internal floor coverings and lowers the risk of accidents to visitors or occupants.
There will always be popular trends in floor coverings and carpet is extremely versatile in being able to ‘move with the times’. For example, the planked look is being widely specified for both public and private sector buildings, including offices and student accommodation. Also, there is a trend for plain carpet that is intermingled with subtle elements of colour, as seen in our Array range.
Even though carpet manufacture has been around for thousands of years, it keeps on evolving. Recent innovations include, for example, the introduction of machines that enable bespoke logos and designs to be integrated within a carpet. Many schools, as well as private and public buildings are specifying this type of carpet to enhance and reinforce their branding in their entrance areas.
It’s worth considering why carpet is still one of the most popular floor coverings for so many different applications. Whilst more competitively-priced materials may deliver short term gains, there are few that can match a carpet’s aesthetics, comfort, acoustics and thermal performance.