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Mohawk to highlight Performance Fibers for 2014

Karastan, American Rug Craftsmen products to feature innovative materials

Mohawk Inds., the parent company of area rug manufacturers Karastan and American Rug Craftsmen, will be touting its Performance Fibers to kick off 2014.

The Calhoun, Ga.-based company plans to introduce a number of new products to tell the story of Smartstrand, Everstrand, Permastrand and Wear-Dated Nylon beginning with the Jan. 7-14 Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Show and International Area Rug Show.

"We're trying to set up our customer and the consumer with better performing product that only Mohawk will offer," said Brandon Culpepper, vice president of specialty sales for Mohawk Home.

Culpepper said Smartstrand, which is derived from switch grass and corn instead of petroleum, has properties similar to nylon from a performance standpoint, but it comes in at a much lower price point. Everstrand is made of PET polyester, which comes from recycled plastic bottles.

"There's a green story behind both of these fibers," Culpepper said.

Culpepper said at the Atlanta market, the entry-level Karastan Studio products will be constructed from Wear-Dated Nylon, and the company has big plans for its new polypropylene, called Permastrand.
Culpepper said the end consumer will notice the difference in the products.

"There's a lot of real tangible benefits to this that the consumer will feel. The fibers are a lot softer than what they compete against in the market," he said. "They tend to perform better and they're priced for less. They don't wear out in the home. You can get a rug at $399 retail like the Smartstrand for 10 to 15 years in a home and it will look great the whole time. That's a big deal to the consumer."

Additionally, Karastan will introduce the Charisma line, which is handmade of machine-spun wool yarn in India. Culpepper said the collection, which also retails for $399, gives Karastan answers to suzani and ikat styles.

"We've come up with a yarn system that will help us get a true handmade look with incredible color," Culpepper said.

Karastan and American Rug Craftsmen show in a shared showroom inside Americasmart Building 1, space 3-A-1.

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