MODERN LIVING: On the Carpet

Since the war, despite the housing boom, rugs have not been selling well. Housewives who hurried out to fill their new homes with furniture, appliances and TV sets often put off rug buying. Such leaders as Bigelow-Sanford, Alexander Smith, James Lees and Mohawk, which once boasted a combined business of $339 million, have been hardest hit of all, seen their overall profits slump by 65%. Partly, the industry blamed its trouble on high costs and consumer resistance. But mostly it is due to a technological revolution in rugmaking that has left the old leaders and their woolen rugs...

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