Karastan Rolls Out Carpet for ‘Divas’

ATLANTA Seeking to update its image for a young, contemporary audience of women who see themselves as “decorating divas,” Karastan is launching a $5 million print campaign via Austin Kelley Advertising that stars actress Andie MacDowell.

The high-end carpet brand, which traditionally has catered to an affluent, older market, wants to increase its profile among women who use home decor to make a fashion statement, said Margaret Gearing, senior vice president and director of client services at the Interpublic Group agency in Atlanta.

In four ads that break in March magazines, MacDowell is pictured sitting or lounging on a Karastan carpet. Accompanying Q&A copy reveals her eclectic tastes and details about her family. The new tagline: “Make a statement. Your own.”

MacDowell is decorating her home in Asheville, N.C., with Karastan carpets, said Duncan Stone, senior vice president and creative director at AKA. “It took a long time to find someone who … was making a statement, was interesting to others and had a tie to the home,” he said.

Karastan’s parent, Calhoun, Ga.-based Mohawk Industries, posted 2002 sales of $4.5 billion, according to Hoover’s Online, up about 32 percent from the previous year. For the past two years, AKA has focused on product-centric work as Karastan cut back on image advertising amid the tough economy, said Gearing.