Ashley Stark knows rugs. She is after all the third generation of the iconic Stark Carpet company, and currently serves as Creative Director of the Stark Studio brand. But it’s Ashley’s modern take on tradition and fearless, not to mention fashionable, aesthetic that have her over 500K followers on Instagram anxious to see what she’ll post next. To celebrate the introduction of Stark Studio rugs to Chairish and her inspired collection of personal picks, we chatted with Ashley about the influences and inputs that inform her personal style and her ultimate rules when it comes to picking the perfect rug.
What do you love about shopping on Chairish?
I love how easy it is. I just search whatever it is I’m currently hunting for and so many amazing options come up. The site is so user-friendly and not overwhelming.
As creative director, what are your go-to sources for inspiration?
My go-to source for collections is always fashion and travel. Where I have been lately tends to dictate my moods, and fashion trends tend to dictate color and feel. Fashion is my second love and that is often where I find a lot of inspiration.
What’s influenced the development of your personal aesthetic?
I think I was born with my own personal design aesthetic. My room growing up was pink with green flowers, and I hated it. When I hit my early teens, I demanded that we redecorate and I chose the colors, fabrics, style, even the vintage French bed. Design is in my blood, but I have always looked to the French for inspiration, admiring their ornate architecture and classical, simple, chic design.
How is your personal aesthetic reflected in the Stark Studio Rugs collection?
There is always a hint of my girly, feminine side in whatever I design. I tend to lean towards softer colors and patterns. I love using blues and grays, and that is reflected in the Stark Studio collection.
Favorite paint color:
Benjamin Moore’s Decorators White.
Instagram of course (@ashleytstark).
Favorite way to treat myself:
An exercise class and some shopping.
Favorite way to work a bit of vintage into a room:
I always love mixing vintage tables into a room. The upholstery can be new.
Favorite thing to collect:
Favorite quote or saying:
Accept what is, let go of what was, and have faith in what will be.
Favorite adult beverage:
Ashley’s Rug Rules:
#1: Pitfall to Avoid…
I think size is a common mistake. People actually tend to go too small and it always amazes me to see a room where the furniture is barely on the rug. I think scale is also a common mistake. People tend to be scared of large scale in a small space, when in fact that can help open the room and make it appear larger.
#2: High-Traffic Pick…
I always suggest wool since it’s all natural, durable and easy to clean.
#3: Favorite Rug & Room Pairing…
I always love doing wall-to-wall in a bedroom. To me, that just makes the room lush and cozy. I love using textures and different fibers like silk or mohair to give it an extra layer of coziness.
#4: Cardinal Rule For Decorating With Rugs…
Rugs should always be the starting point in a room. Start there and decorate around it. There are thousands of options for fabric and not nearly as many rug choices.
Portrait by Brittany Ambridge