Known widely in the handmade rug industry as ‘The Ruggist’, Michael A.C. Christie has been providing commentary on the world of rugs since 2008. With a passionate appreciation of rugs and carpets acquired during a career spanning over two decades, his experience in retail and trade only sales, wholesale, and niche manufacturing informs his irreverent style. In addition to The Ruggist he had previously written for various trade magazines (COVER, HALI, and Rug Insider) before taking up the Editorship of United States’ based Rug Insider Magazine in mid-2017. Based out of the Canadian Maritimes, Christie travels regularly to major trade fairs and conferences around the world, and also presents ‘For the Love of Carpets!’ which chronicles modern carpet design over his career.
The Ruggist began somewhat on a lark during the summer of 2008 as a way to occupy the otherwise then idle hands of Christie, and as such The Ruggist is as much ‘who’ as it is ‘what’. Through several years of intermittent and variable speed writing, Christie earned a solid reputation as The Ruggist (whether good or bad is uncertain to this day) for his critique and commentary on the world of rugs. Irreverence and levity are hallmarks of his opinionated, yet truthful, writing style.
Today I had the very distinct pleasure of touring the Nepali production facilities of @newmoonrugs with company founder John Kurtz. Mr. Kurtz has been an inspiration to me ever since I first met him and he made me ask the question that still drives us today: ‘What makes a truly great carpet?’ Though he is predominantly retired from the business – New Moon is now run by daughter Erika Kurtz – he agreed to a lengthy chat over lunch, coffee, inspection, and traffic congestion here in Kathmandu. Thanks to Erika, John, and future New Moon Principal Izzy for the most wonderful day. #rugs #carpets #kathmandu #interiors #interiordesign #theruggist
Fortunate enough to have been in favour with the God(s) or not of opportunity during the booming years prior to the 2008 financial crisis – an experience that afforded many opportunities for growth that still shape his life – Christie continued to broaden his knowledge and skills working for a major United States carpet importer before beginning both The Ruggist and his own niche rug company, Red Spruce (now also defunct) in mid to late 2008. This latter project – assessed as a ‘very costly mistake’ by Christie’s perfect hindsight – directly informs and shapes his experience as an avid rug aficionado, commentator, and fledgling collector. Post Red Spruce, Christie’s work has largely focused on writing and critique with his opinion being sought out when subject matter the rug industry press traditionally shies away from, needs to be addressed.
In addition to his love of rugs and carpets, Christie is an avid cook who enjoys incorporating the many regional flavours of the world into his personal répertoire de la cuisine. A dual Canadian-American citizen who currently resides in the Canadian Maritimes, he enjoys hiking, travel, handwork, and functional yet stylish design. Crediting his success – such that it is – to inspiration from nature, urbanity, Eero Saarinen, Mies van der Rohe, Gustav Stickley, Ron Bowerman, Jeanette Mathern, and the innumerable unnamed others who without recognition have built what we enjoy, Christie strives to learn more and gain ever elusive wisdom with each new day.