Our dogs and cats have created a rug conundrum.
My husband and I own several rugs, including a Persian one that his Aunt Ojik and Uncle Varoujan hand-carried from Tabriz, Iran, as a gift for our wedding 14 years ago. They’re all rolled up and stored away, lest they be further covered in fur or other, ahem, biological byproducts of our pets.
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But those beautiful rugs should be protecting our wood floors, which are original to the home and were refinished within the last few years. Now the floors resemble the bar top at a dive bar thanks to, you guessed it, our dogs and cats.
Rugs absorb noise, add a layer of coziness and, as one famous dude likes to say, they can really tie a room together. (Yes, that’s a Big Lebowski reference.)
I can’t bear to throw ours out but I am not sure if they’re worth keeping thanks to the cat vomit and urine stains. We sprayed them with special pet urine enzyme solutions, but I’m worried they’ll still smell like cat urine when we finally unroll them for use.
Needless to say, I’m not in the market for new rugs. But if you are, make sure you check out the Bunyaad Rug Co. sale, Thursday through Oct. 12 at Ten Thousand Villages, 7947 Santa Fe Drive, Overland Park.
Bunyaad rugs will make your house feel pretty and exotic, and you’ll come away feeling altruistic because they’re fair trade.
A Pakistani pastor and rug artisan founded the company in the late 1960s as a way to create jobs for 10 families in villages.
Today, more than 850 families in 100 villages throughout Pakistan work on Bunyaad looms: artisans are guaranteed fair wages, child labor is forbidden, and they are paid not by speed but per knot, ensuring high-count, high-quality pieces.
Bunyaad brings Christian and Muslim rug artisans together, transcending differences of religion and tradition, so it’s also a peace-building project.
According to the folks at Ten Thousand Villages, they had record sales of the rugs last year after a story appeared in House+Home. Let’s see how we’ll do this year.
Help! Our basement smells
Speaking of household smells, this next request comes from my husband, sports columnist Vahe Gregorian.
He’s looking for a solution to the dankness that seeps from our basement after a storm.
Our house is 107 years old and has a limestone foundation that leaks. We don’t accumulate more than a few puddles here and there, but you’d think it was fall 1977 at the Country Club Plaza the way he acts when it rains.
He summons me into the basement to look at the puddles and rack my brain over how to prevent them even though we’ve regraded the soil around our house and had new gutters and various types of outdoor drainage systems installed.
A dehumidifier dries the puddles within a few hours and the smell is really not that bad, so I refuse to spend $7,000 to install a sump pump and French drain. I’ve convinced him to live with the short-lived puddles, but he can’t bear the smell — faint as it is — that comes with them.
So now, dear readers, if you can come up with a simple, inexpensive solution for that smell, we’ll invite you, your significant other and another couple to our home for dinner, at which time you can pummel my husband with sports questions.
By the way, we have also hung bags of lava rocks down there. It isn’t working.
Post your solutions to facebook.com/kcstar.house.home. I’ll have my husband test them, and I’ll let you know what works best.