The carpet which lay in the family’s livingroom was bought at Metz & Co, a store in Amsterdam specialising in modern furniture, fabrics, applied art products, women’s fashion and hats. This carpet, serial number S118, was highly popular at the time and remained in demand until well into the 1950s. It was probably designed by Elise Djo Bourgeois, who also designed the kitchen curtains at Sonneveld House.
North African products were a major influence on applied art in this period. Metz & Co’s director Joseph de Leeuw was well connected in the business world and knew one of the directors of the SAFT carpet factory in Rabat. De Leeuw often visited Morocco. He bought carpets there and other products which he shipped to the Netherlands. This ensured that Metz & Co offered a unique range of products.
The Sonneveld family visited Morocco in the mid-1930s. They took a cruise which sailed via Lisbon to the Azores, Tangier, Casablanca and Marseille. In Morocco they visited Metz & Co’s SAFT carpet factory in Rabat, where their own rug had been woven. The carpet now in the livingroom is a replica of the original which is kept in the Nieuwe Instituut storage depot.
Elise Djo Bourgeois (probably). Moroccan carpet S118. Collection Het Nieuwe Instituut, SONN 285.
Metz & Co. De creatieve jaren door Petra Timmer (Uitgeverij 010, 1995)
Brinkman en Van der Vlugt. Huis Sonneveld. Modern wonen in 1993 (NAi uitgevers, 2001)