MAGIC HAND LTD IS AN AWARD-WINNING COMPANY OF MASTER RUG CRAFTSMEN, APPLYING SPECIALIST RUG KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS AND EXPERTISE IN ALL ASPECTS OF RUG, ORIENTAL CARPET AND TAPESTRY CARE AND CONSERVATION.
With the company's Senior Master Rug Craftsman and Rug Specialist Anas Rugman at the helm, Magic Hand Ltd guarantees specialist applied rug skills in all aspects of rug, Oriental carpet and tapestry repairing, reweaving, altering, resizing, dyeing, restoration, alterations and conservation, as well as deep-wash cleaning, and applied stain, odour, and colour-run corrective treatment skills.
With a full range of professional rug works and bespoke rug services provided for all types of weavings, Magic Hand Ltd’s reputation as "one of the finest company of rug experts in the UK today" ensures that our customers will receive the best service and expert rug care and conservation for their weavings.
As Master Rug Craftsmen and Rug Specialists, Magic Hand Ltd are passionate about conserving, supporting and keeping alive traditional rug-weaving and embroidery-crafted skills, to highlight and preserve weaving heritage and craftsmanship.
A bespoke-made Diamond Jubilee Embroidery Queen's Gift, especially created and crafted by Anas Rugman and his Specialist Team, to celebrate Her Majesty the Queen’s 60 Years of Sovereign Rule and her Royal Diamond Jubilee in 2012, received the Royal seal of approval in October 2012, when Anas received a 'Royal Letter of Thanks' from Queen Elizabeth II. Here, Her Majesty expressed her "... delight and particular interest for this special Embroidery’s created by Anas".
The Diamond Jubilee Embroidery took 13 months to craft, with the completed piece measuring 1270mm by 970mm. This bespoke, heritage piece blends traditional and specialist embroidery and textile techniques including Gold work, Silk work and Crewel work, where interwoven gold and silk metallic threads in varying hues are meticulously embroidered onto a damask plain-weave linen ground. A rare, antique, silk and wool carpet was used as the royal blue ground in its design to highlight Anas Rugman’s rug craftsmanship legacy and to create a unique ‘signature’ piece.
"We are extremely proud and very honoured to receive the Queen’s Royal Letter of Thanks, where Her Majesty expressed interest in the Diamond Jubilee Embroidery and has taken the time to individually mention us by name in her correspondence, which is such a rare and proud honour! We shall treasure this special Royal Letter and cherish the Queen’s kind words of praise for our embroidery’s creation," said Anas Rugman.
Upon completion, a Special Dispensation was granted thereby allowing the Diamond Jubilee Embroidery Queen's Gift to reside in the life-time Trusteeship of Surrey. Here, an Honorary Presentation Ceremony, saw the gold gilt-framed Embroidery formally accepted by the High Sheriff of Surrey, as the esteemed representative for and on behalf of Her Majesty Queen, accompanied by a Deputy Lieutenant of Surrey. "It is my great honour and privilege to unveil this absolutely stunning Diamond Jubilee Embroidery. It is awe-inspiring to see the exsquisite craftsmanship that has created this beautiful Royal Gift," said the High Sheriff.
A WEAVING JOURNEY OF 800,000 RUG KNOTS CELEBRATING SURREY HERITAGE
In 2008, inspired by the Haslemere Coat of Arms motto: Vita Musis Gratior - ‘Life is more satisfying through the Muses or Arts’, Anas Rugman wanted to showcase a life-time of skilled craftmanship and rug passion by hand-weaving and rug-knotting the Coat of Arms insignia, as a gift for the Surrey town and to celebrate his family’s forthcoming 100-year rug business lineage centenary in 2010.
The ultimate objective was to produce a beautiful, hand-crafted piece that highlighted traditional rug-weaving skills, interwoven with Surrey's cultural heritage. So began a two-year journey of hand-weaving 800,000 rug knots... – making this Weaving the UK’s first-ever Coat of Arms to be hand-woven and rug-knotted in wool and silk on a traditional rug-weaving loom, by a Master Rug Craftsman.
During its two-year creation and through the ‘Open Weave’ and ‘Schools In Stitches’ events devised by Anas Rugman, more than 1,165 people from around the world came to participate, by hand-weaving their individual rug knots into the Coat of Arms Weaving.
In April 2010, a Mayoral Reception was held to celebrate and honour Anas Rugman's unique and inspirational achievement and the successful completion of the Coat of Arms Weaving. More than 160 VIP and distinguished guests attended this special occasion including: the Vice Lord Lieutenant of Surrey Gordon Lee Steere, the High Sheriff of Surrey Lady Elizabeth Toulson CBE, the Right Honourable Lord Hayter, the Deputy Mayor of Waverley, and from London: The Worshipful Company of Weavers, The Rogue Dragon Pursuivant: Mr Clive Cheeseman and The Richmond Herald from The College of Arms, The Heritage Society and the National Association of Decorative and Fine Arts, as well as Society Presidents, past Mayors and local dignitaries.
In March 2011, the Coat of Arms Weaving was specially mounted and framed, using pledged Sponsorship Donations from benefactors, and was now ready to be formally received at its Mayoral Inauguration. Haslemere Educational Museum became the life-time ‘Custodians in Perpetuity’ for the piece, on behalf of the town, where the completed weaving is now proudly installed and on permanent public display.
"Hand-weaving and rug-knotting the UK's first-ever Coat of Arms was not only a great privilege, but a rare honour. During its two year construction, the rug-weaving's beauty and historic Surrey heritage gradually manifested between my hands, as I sat at my rug loom hand-weaving over 800,000 rug knots, stitch by stitch, knot by knot, breath by breath,” said Anas Rugman.
RESCUING ST CHRISTOPHER’S CHURCH RARE PEACOCK CARPET
Described by former Poet Laureate Sir John Betjeman as “the most beautiful building of its age”, St Christopher’s Church is a fine example of an historic and listed Arts and Craft building in Surrey.
Enthralled by the Church's preserved interior, during a tour with Trustees from the National Association of Decorative & Fine Arts Society (NADFAS), Anas Rugman noted a carpet displayed on the Chancel’s parquet floor. Using his rug expertise and specialist knowledge and keen to assess its condition and origins, Anas Rugman confirmed the dirt-ridden and dust-filled piece to be an antique, Persian Tabriz carpet, hand-woven with a wool pile in natural dyes including Madder Root, Indigo and Saffron, and dated the carpet to the 1890s, making it over 100 years old. Anas Rugman was also able to identify the carpet’s design of two peacock motifs – a Persian multi-faceted symbol of integrity, spirituality and royalty, set within a Paradise garden setting. He also verified the piece to be a ‘rare’ carpet design, to the amazement of everyone present.
Seeing how dust-worn and lifeless the carpet looked and to help support the Church, as one of Surrey's finest Listed Buildings, with its Conservation and Care of Artefacts, Anas Rugman offered his company’s RugRescue™ deep-wash cleaning process and stain and odour corrective treatment services, to revive and recondition the piece and restore its original lustre. He also offerred the company’s durable, anti-slip rug underlay to help preserve and protect the carpet’s underside foundation and prevent slippage, once it had been cleaned and returned to the Church.
The carpet was carefully rolled and taken to the custom-built Rug Cleaning Studios for conservation and cleaning. Over a period of two weeks, layers of candle wax, ingrained dust and dirt, that had built up over a hundred years of use, were carefully and painstakenly removed by Anas Rugman and his team of Rug Cleaning Specialists. Due to the carpet‘s advanced age and fragility, each stage of the 10-step rug cleaning process had to be expertly and carefully applied. Pre-heating and de-dusting began the process, while numerous gentle applications of the company's eco-friendly rug-wash formula and hand-washing techniques ensured the carpet's lustre and silky-soft wool texture was gradually restored. After which, the carpet was placed in the Rug Drying Studio. Once dry, the piece was first gently brushed through to remove any residual wool, then carefully ‘buffed’ and ‘polished’ by hand, with the ‘pile laid out’ in the direction of the weave.
"As a Master Rug Craftsman, it was a wonderful opportunity to be able to offer my company‘s rug services and skills to help conserve St Christopher’s antique carpet and, in the process, go some way towards helping to preserve this wonderful woven heritage on display here at the church, for future generations to enjoy,” said Anas Rugman.
Two weeks later, Anas Rugman returned to St Christopher’s and rolled out the newly revived antique Tabriz Carpet to gasps of joy and amazement from the Reverend and the Church Wardens. He also presented them with a certified Written Rug Valuation detailing the piece and its value in the present UK market, where everyone gazed at the newly-discovered weaving treasure in wonderment.
"We at St Christopher’s are delighted to see the carpet looking so beautiful, especially now Anas Rugman has told us that the motifs and design represent a view of Paradise. We are so grateful to Anas Rugman and his rug team's interest and for their generosity in sharing specialist rug skills and expertise, to help enhance the beauty of our church and conserve our beautiful, and now revealed antique and rare carpet,” said the Reverend.
WEAVING THE FOUNDATION
From an early age, Anas Rugman was surrounded by beautiful hand-woven weavings in the family home. Regular visits to his family’s Rug, Oriental Carpet and Tapestries Gallery and Restoration and Cleaning Workshops after school, encouraged a deep, innermost passion to learn all about the many and various types of rugs, Oriental carpets and tapestry weavings, and how to conserve them.
At the age of 15, having received an enthusiastic response for his fine restoration of a rare Qashqai (south west Persian) collector's piece, worked on during the weekends, Anas Rugman began the traditional eight-year rug apprenticeship training, after school hours. This involved learning the skills of the craft initially as an apprentice to his father, whose third-generation Master Rug Craftsman expertise and knowledge were legendary.
At 16 and again at 17, during the three-month school summer holidays, encouraged by the highly favourable replies to the Letters of Introduction from his father and great uncle – as esteemed rug specialists, and fuelled by a desire to learn all there was to know about rugs and carpets, Anas Rugman travelled to the specialist rug cleaning workshops in Veramine, Northern Tehran, in Iran. Here, he apprenticed and studied hand-washing techniques, stain removal and corrective treatments for silk and wool rugs and the age-old secrets of how to fix colour runs using natural methods, with Masters of the Craft. While in Tehran, Anas Rugman also studied and became fluent in the Persian language of Farsi and the dialects of the region's tribal and village rug weavers. His apprenticeship journeys to Tehran were the first of many fascinating rug and carpet sojourns he would make during his lifetime.
IN SEARCH OF RUG AND CARPET KNOWLEDGE
At 18, Anas Rugman was awarded a place at University to study Sciences. His passion for rugs, however, made him realise that his true vocation lay in developing and honing his rug specialist skills and to follow in his father’s, his great uncle’s and great-grandfather’s footsteps. This decision proved to be one of the most important and defining moments in his life.
To further develop his rug weaving skills, Anas Rugman travelled to the Baluch regions and then on to the Turkmen regions in Central Asia to study the full range of weaving techniques including: flat weaves, such as Sumac and Kilim; and tapestry and knotted-pile weaves, such as Chuval, Torba and Asmalik, with Master Rug Weavers.
Later, Anas Rugman travelled to south east Turkey, where he studied hand-dyeing and colour-matching skills with the Kurdish tribal people of Diyar Bakir and learnt their language and local dialects. Here, specialist rug training was focussed on how to accurately match up damaged colour areas in either antique, decorative or contemporary rugs and tapestries, using a vast range of natural hand-dyed wool, silk and cotton yarns, as well as the necessary expertise to individually hand dye any wool, silk or cotton threads to create an exact colour match for any weave restored.
SPECIALIST SKILLS, EXPERT CARE AND CONSERVATION FOR YOUR WEAVINGS!
After completing his eight-year apprenticeship, Anas Rugman’s rug weaving, repair, restoration, colour dyeing, cleaning and stain & odour corrective treatment skills became much in demand. The word spread and Anas’ reputation as an esteemed Master Rug Craftsman and Rug Cleaning specialist increased, as did his clients and their commissions.
In 1997, encouraged by this overwhelming positive response, Anas Rugman established Magic Hand Ltd: for the specialist care and conservation of rugs, Oriental carpets, kilims and tapestries, where a wealth of more than four generations of combined rug expertise, knowledge and woven skills are now applied by his specialist rug team to restore, preserve and maintain customers' woven pieces, so that they can enjoy the good results.