O’Brien. Image: Raborn Media

by Sophie McNeil Wolf

After nine years of being a stay-at-home mom, Coleen O’Brien’s last child was headed off to kindergarten. Ready for a little reprieve during the day? Not if O’Brien’s mother, an interior designer in Baton Rouge, had anything to do with it.

“She had opened up a rug store in Baton Rouge and with the little one going to school, she said, “It’s time for you to go back to work. Why don’t you open up a store like mine?’”

It was 1999 and the store became The Rug Place.

While machine-made rugs were the mainstay of The Rug Place’s collection, O’Brien has branched out over the years into one-of-a-kind heirloom rugs such as Oushak and Tibetan hand-made pieces.

Affordable rugs for growing families also line the walls, including seagrass, sisal, and outdoor rugs. In fact, The Rug Place has the largest selection in the state of Mississippi.

“You name it, I have it. We carry around 2,000 rugs at any given time,” she says.

O’Brien came to Jackson in 1989 and made her way to Fondren a few years later in 1992. Since then, she has ingrained herself in the community — through her church, St. James Episcopal, and with multiple organizations around the metro.

“I have been so blessed and lucky to have this place for all of these years that if you need something for a silent auction, you’ll have it. We give back to the community consistently.”

Find The Rug Place at 2315 Lakeland Cove or at therugplace.com.