Updated 6/14/22. In December we received a message from the Afghan felted rug makers. They were desperate for an order. They’d returned to their villages but there was no work. “Could we send them an order???” We asked: how could we send them money from the US without putting a target on their backs? The solution was to wire the funds to the brother of one of the artisans, now living in a refugee camp in Qatar. He’d get the money to Afghanistan. Next, we asked: how would they ship the rugs? “We’ll figure that out” was their reply. And indeed, several months later the husband of one of the artisans trucked the rugs overland into Uzbekistan, where DHL still operates. We can’t help but admire the rug makers determination and resilience!
A few years ago, the local Taliban leader forbid the artisans to make any rugs with an image of a living being, including the ever-popular spotted pony rug. The leader threatened to burn down their craft center if his order was disobeyed. But this year, when we agreed to place an order, they offered the pony rug as an option. We learned the former local leader had been killed and the new leader recognized the artisans needed to earn income; he allowed the production of the pony rug to resume. Find the Afghan hand-felted pony rugs here. Remember, quantities are limited. Prices include shipping within the continental US.