How do you buy a rug post-lockdown? By Facetiming

In my series on how businesses are adapting to the coronavirus emergency, I’ve talked to cafes who’ve become grocers, shop owners who have been busy putting up perspex screens and marking two metre distance on the floor with sticky tape and others who are reconfiguring their business model totally.

Many are doing more business online and interactively. Tribe in Devonshire Rd, is full of beautiful, vibrant handmade rugs from all round the world, but like many shops in Chiswick isn’t really suited to taking more than two customers at a time with social distancing. Chris Couch, who runs the shop, has been telling me about his plans for reopening on 15 June.

“It’s about getting people to feel safe” he told me. But actually, by thinking through how he can let people see his rugs without coming into the shop, he may be providing a better service, by Facetiming them for a personal consultation.

“I get people to show me around their house on their phone, so I can see where they want the rug to fit, what it needs to go with”.

He will then find several options he thinks they’d like and lays them out for them to see. If they are comfortable with coming to the shop, he will make an appointment so they are they only ones in the shop and they can look in peace without being worried about other people coming in.

Chris is planning to open the shop on Monday 15 June. You can make an appointment for a Facetime consultation or to go into the shop and have a look by emailing him at info@tribe-london or calling him on 07785 706772.

See more of Tribe’s beautiful rugs on their website.