Over the past 25 years, the term Venetian Flatweave has become synonymous with Roger Oates but the origins of the words are largely unknown. According to historians, the term “Venetian” has nothing to do with Venice as flatweave is never known to have been made in the Italian city. It is thought, however, that the name refers to the bright colours that were used as they were reminiscent of the colour palettes used at the time in the many dye houses of Venice.

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The Design ‘Hampton’ in one of it’s original colours ‘Rouge’

Popular colours used in the original Venetian carpets from the 18th and 19th centuries were greens ranging from Forest to Apple, and reds from Rose to Scarlet. At the time, rooms were dimly lit by candle light therefore the original colours that may appear rather flamboyant to us now, were required in order to be seen in the dark pre-electric days.

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The very first design in the Roger Oates archives ‘Vernon’. Shown here in colour ‘Forest’

Some of the first Roger Oates designs take inspiration from these colours as they were created as one-off commissions for specific historical renovation projects therefore had to be sympathetic to their surroundings.

Over the years Roger and Fay have breathed new life into Venetian flatweave bringing it up to date for the 21st Century and a much sought after floor covering.

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‘Fitzroy Black’ being woven on our specially adapted Hattersley looms

Today, Roger Oates Venetian flatweave is woven on Hattersley looms which were once the backbone of the Harris Tweed industry. The centuries-old weaving process gives the rugs and runners their unique texture, yet the design and carefully edited colour palette create a timeless look that is ideal for both classic…

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‘Chartres Jute’

…and contemporary interiors.

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‘Bespoke Cluny Yellow’

For a selection of the current collections, visit our Online Gallery

If you missed Part 1 of our history blog – it’s here.