Design Centre Stories

A Fantastical Entrance

Jennifer Manners Design creates a fabulously surreal rug to welcome guests to WOW!house 2024

Visitors can’t help be struck by WOW!house’s entrance, which this year is augmented by a colourful handwoven rug from Jennifer Manners Design. Asked to create something suitably showstopping for this year’s showhouse, Jennifer Manners created the ‘Secret Garden’ rug, inspired by the surrealism of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, where overscaled bees, bugs and butterflies flit between exotic flowers, all set on a background of a meandering Greek key motif.

“The garden motif embodies a kaleidoscope of colours, patterns and textures and a sense of fairytale, welcoming visitors with a sense of fun and anticipation for what may lie behind the doors,” says Manners. “I wanted to create a super-sized visual sensory experience that both surprises and delights, much like Alice’s discovery of the garden in Lewis Carroll’s book.”

The rug is not a regular shape, instead featuring a wavy perimeter that leads the eye into the house, and also hints at the journey of wonder that visitors are about the take through the house.

‘Secret Garden’ was handmade in India by one of Jennifer Manners Design’s trusted weaving teams, who worked at record speed to get the piece finished. It is made from the company’s award-winning /Re/Purpose Performance fibre, which is ideal for high-traffic commercial spaces.

Jennifer Manners Design’s work can also be seen right at the other end of the showhouse. As visitors step from the main house into the Summit Furniture Terrace by US landscape designer Fernando Wong, a fresh green daisy-studded rug leads them into the space, mimicking nature and marking the transition from inside to out.

Jennifer Manners Design, First Floor, Centre Dome