Anna Williams – rare mechanic of rugs

Anna Williams – rare mechanic of rugs

Though she must often work in solitude, Anna Williams says her trade makes her feel connected to the world.

Wellington woman Anna Williams can count on one hand the number of rug repairers in New Zealand.

Practised in hand weaving, she began to repair rugs when she found herself raising her son alone, needing to find ways to support herself. She has been repairing rugs professionally for 26 years.

Williams’ singular skills generally require her to work, and learn, in much solitude. “No one speaks the language of rugs that I do”, she says. But she finds her community in Iran, where she regularly travels to source yarns, gather new techniques and work with other repairers.

For Williams, each rug is a new adventure. “I never know what’s coming in the door. They’re all different, they’ve all got different stories, and they challenge me.”

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Article by Ellen O'Dwyer-Cunliffe

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Article by Ellen O'Dwyer-Cunliffe

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