Vendor of the Week: Bruce’s Heirloom Rugs

Bruce Blunk grew up in Northern Perry County. His family settled there in the early 1800s in what is now known as the Rickenbaugh House, a museum nestled in the middle of Hoosier National Forest. Many of his family heirlooms are on display there, including looms once used by his father, grandmother, great-grandmother, and so on, but he never had the desire to do so himself, at least not until he was in his mid-20s.

By that time, his grandmother had died, but his father looked in on him from time to time as he worked to teach himself to use a loom. Just a few years later, his father died in a construction accident, an event that instilled in him a greater desire to master his family’s art.

He uses a 115-year-old loom to weave his thick, colorful rugs. The “shaggy looking rugs”  are made from waste products from blanket companies, while the “real colorful ones” are made from Solmate Socks, a popular mis-matched sock company in Vermont. The owners send him “seconds” or defective products.

He sells them at Head to Toe Day Spa, 300 W. Jennings St. Ste. 103 in Newburgh, a business he and his wife own together, the Bitterman Mini Shoppes & Farmer’s Market, 204 Main St., and he attends the weekend farmer’s markets in Evansville and Newburgh during the spring and summer months.

He also ships them to interior decorators all over the nation who admire and respect his work.

You can read the rest of Bruce’s bio in the Evansville Living article about him.

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