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Rya Rug - Finland

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Ryijys / Rya Rug - Finnish, 1931

This is in original condition. The design comes from the school of Märta Måås-Fjetterström, a modernist in a Scandinavian movement established in the late 19th century with an interest in authentic crafts, cf English Arts and Crafts Movement.

Rugs known as ryijy (Finnish) or rya (Swedish) are a unique type of weaving from these two countries from late 19th to mid 20th century. I have found two specialists to advise on this rare example.

Igor Honkanen: "The design is most probably one of the Friends of Finnish Handicafts, a company which was the biggest supplier of the designs and the materials for the ryijy and also many other textiles.They sold the kits including the designs and the materials. They had many artists who designed models. They also organised the textile design competitions to get new and fashionable models for their business. This Ryijys design is typical of its time, sort of national romantic design."

Gavin Strachan: "The design is influenced by the modern movement of Märta Måås-Fjetterström who was an acolyte of Lilli Zickerman, Sweden's William Morris, and who started her workshop in 1919.  In Sweden, the combination of the 1870s economic crisis and a big population increase led to employment problems and emigration - so the government supported salaries, but it also encouraged crafts via craft schools which included weaving. Funds from the state went to Handarbetets Vänner, formed in 1874, but it was only towards the end of the 19th century, that people began to take an interest in the cultural significance of craftsmanship rather than its economic benefits. Influential in this was Lilli Zickerman, mentioned above, who from 1897 ensured that output should be on a high aesthetic level as well as being good quality in terms of design and materials.  She promoted the use of vegetable dyes rather than aniline dyes as she said that the latter gave a "screaming" result." 

Condition: This example is in exceptional condition as it has never been walked on, having been hung on a wall, apparently since new. There is a cotton fringe probably added when it was new but not part of the structure. Pile is therefore in mint condition. Slight gentle fading of the reddish pink. Dated 1931 and signed or perhaps marked as a wedding gift for RA or this may be the weavers signature.

Size: 163 x 122 cm

Delivery Information

  • We use various shippers to deliver our goods within the UK and abroad. Sadly the environmentally friendly camel train, for thousands of years the mainstay of the silk Roads, is no longer operational though we occasionally use a bicycle. There are no limits to where we deliver, except those of cost.
  • At our discretion, 'free shipping' may not apply if our shipper quotes a significant premium for your postcode. If this is the case, we will contact you and you may cancel the order or choose to pay the excess. Overseas delivery often requires more complex paper work and on rare occasions we may charge for this
  • Almost all on-line orders are delivered within a week, many within 2 or 3 working days (we are closed on Mondays).
  • Bulky items may take longer. We are normally able to share tracking numbers or advise likely delivery dates but we don't operate a guaranteed service

If the item is listed as 'free shipping' the following applies:

  • At our discretion, 'free shipping' may not apply if our shipper quotes a significant premium for your postcode. In this case, we will contact you and you may cancel the order or choose to pay the excess.
  • Our shipping charges are based on actual costs from our shipper. No additional cost is included such as packing, unless we state that.
  • Furniture or some bulky or fragile items may require you to obtain a quote from us before you can make the purchase
  • Since Covid19 most shippers do not want signatures, being happy instead with your stated name and sometimes just taking a photograph of the item on your door step.  
  • If your order doesn't arrive in reasonable time (see above 'How long delivery takes') you must contact us immediately and certainly no later than 7 days after you placed your order. Shippers may some times be late but they depend on reputation. Since opening our Ecommerce website 4 years ago, we have lost one packet of moth traps, at the time of writing (19.10.2020).
  • Goods for return should be sent to The Nomads Tent, 21, St Leonard's Lane, Edinburgh EH8 9SH, UK. 0044 131 662 1612,
  • If our agreement with you requires us to pay the shipping cost please confirm and agree with us before booking a shipper. In that case we may also be able to book the shipping from our side.
  • If an item you purchased was offered with 'free shipping', this means The Nomads Tent agrees to pays for the shipping on condition you keep it. If an item is returned for any reason other than being faulty, not what was ordered, or because we made an agreement in exception to the normal terms, we will deduct the cost of the outward shipping. 
  • It will be helpful if you tell by email, post or telephone call, if you plan to return something.
  • We will only refund whatever is is agreed to be refunded, when the goods are received by us in perfect condition (or as they were when dispatched in the case of faulty items) and within a reasonable period of time.

Should you require any further information or help, visit our FAQs section, or please contact us and we will be happy to assist you.


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Rya Rug - Finland

Rya Rug - Finland