In September of 1988, Fred & Pat Nasseri established The Imperial Trading Company D.B.A. Gallery of Oriental Rugs in Wilmington, North Carolina.
Oriental rugs, tapestries, contemporaries, high-end broadlooms, stair runners, stair rods & padding
Rug sales, appraisals, storage, cleaning and repair
We are members of the Oriental Rug Retailers of America, the Better Business Bureau and the Wilmington Chamber of Commerce.
Departments & Personnel
CEO, ORRA Certified Appraiser: Fred Nasseri
President and Conservation Specialist: Pat Nasseri
Vice-President of Marketing: Shahrzad Gardner
Operations Manager: Timothy Gardner
Administrator: Ashley Denison
Sales & Service: Lance Horney
Repair and Restoration: Phylis Loos
Cleaning & Maintenance Services: Omega Williams
Cleaning & Maintenance Services: Christopher Kraft
Cleaning & Maintenance Services: Ryan Jett
Cleaning & Maintenance Services: Christian Stonestreet
Showrooms (Wilmington & South Carolina)
In September of 1988 Fred and Pat Nasseri opened a small store with a 1,400 square feet showroom and 800 square feet for cleaning and repair on Oleander Drive, Wilmington. In 1991 they opened a second location in downtown Wilmington and in 1993 they opened a third store on College Road. In 1994 they opened a fourth store in Litchfield, South Carolina. Finally in 1996, Fred and Pat purchased a property on Oleander Drive and built a 15,000 square feet world-class gallery and combined the three locations into one. They also relocated the Litchfield Gallery to a Design Center in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. The primary Gallery is in Wilmington and was designed with a vaulted ceiling to resemble an imperial tent. This 15,000 square feet Gallery is one of the most elegant in America, housing millions of dollars of fine high quality Persian and Oriental Rugs. This Gallery designed like an imperial tent displays our rugs beautifully, reflecting the time-honored tradition of an art and craft that has existed for more than two millennia. Our inventory comprises of over 7,000 rugs. Myrtle Beach. We have our second Gallery of Oriental Rugs in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina in a Design Center near the gated community of Grand Dunes.
Collections and Inventory
We have over 7,000 rugs in stock, traditional, contemporary and antique, and high-end wall-to-wall carpet and stair runners.
Program Rug Collection
In the main Gallery and in a Gallery located in the rear of the building and also in the Myrtle Beach Gallery there are a wide variety of program rugs, which can be ordered in different sizes. These rugs are displayed on the racks with labels indicating the various sizes, colors and designs available.
One-Of-A-Kind Hand knotted
These rugs are displayed in piles according to size and style.
These rugs are displayed on piles in the gallery to the rear of the building on the second floor. These rugs are offered at a considerable discount.
Antiques & Family Collection
We have a considerable collection of antique and semi-antique rugs woven in the 18th, 19th and early 20th centuries.
Palace & Over-sized Gallery
We have allocated 2,500 square feet of the building to display our over-sized rugs (12x18 and larger) and within this area there is a 10’x 20’ walk-in bank safe which houses our antique rugs including Oushak, Agra, Kazak, Khorassan, Tabriz, Bijar, Sultan-Abbad, Esfahan, Bakhtiari, Heriz…
High-end wall-to-wall carpet, stair runners, border and decorative rugs. We offer a selection of high-end broadlooms displayed in the front and back galleries and in the Myrtle Beach Gallery.
After Sales Service
Repair & Restoration
On the Mezzanine floor, we have dedicated 1,500 square feet to the repair and restoration of oriental rugs.
Cleaning & Service
In the rear of the building we have built a 3,000 square feet building designed for expeditious cleaning and servicing of rugs including, sizing, scotch guarding, deodorizing, mothproofing and disinfecting. There is also a 4,000 square feet patio for pressure washing and sun drying of serviced rugs.
Padding & Installation
We also offer top quality padding and proper installation of the rugs on hardwood, tiled or carpeted floors.
We have allocated a climate-controlled area within the gallery to store rugs of our customers who are moving, building or re-modeling their homes.
We are certified appraisers and offer certificates of appraisal to our customers about the type, style, origin and fair market replacement value of their rugs.
We are a fully computerized organization; our custom designed software has been designed and developed by ComputerSoft with direct participation from Tim Gardner, our Operations Manager. This comprehensive and user-friendly software will be launched to the market in 2009. This software allows effortless access to every rug in our inventory including picture, vendor, size, type and transaction history. This is one of the best tools available for sales, marketing, and inventory control.
Lectures, Exhibitions and Seminars
In collaboration with the Cameron Art Museum, University of North Carolina in Wilmington, the Morning Star Newspaper, Cape Fear Technical College, A.S.I.D, and the Daughter of American Confederates we have organized a number of lectures, exhibitions and seminars about the history, origin, style, value, decoration and preservation of Oriental Rugs. Enclosed are copies of documents pertaining to these activities. Additionally, on a daily basis we offer invaluable information both verbally and written (brochure) to our customers about our rugs and interior design to facilitate the best choice of rug.
Awards and Recognition
We have won the most prestigious award in the business. In July 2007 at a ceremony organized by Americas Mart our Gallery won the Rug Retailer of The Year Award Participants at the ceremony were the Oriental Rug Importers Association and the Oriental Rug Retailers of America. The Gallery of Oriental Rugs building is a landmark location in Wilmington and a destination for designers and collectors in America. After winning this prestigious award we have observed an increased national recognition from Interior Designers, Developers and Collectors.
Background, Credentials and Expertise of our Personnel
Fred Nasseri, ORRA Certified Appraiser
Fred Nasseri was born in Esfahan, Iran. He has been married to Pat for 51 years. They have three children, two sons are in the computer business and their daughter is in the family business. Fred’s father was a prominent attorney and collector of fine rugs. Among his father’s collection are the Seyrafian, Habibian, Dabir Kashan, Bakhtiari Bibi-Baft, and Silk Rashtizadeh rugs designed by the “Esfahan School of Fine Arts”. Fred’s fathers knowledge and love of Fine Art has been passed onto Fred. Fred graduated from the University of Toulouse in France with a Doctorate at Law, with Honors. Fred has a PhD. in Economics from Tehran University. He has worked as a Professor, Attorney and Diplomat serving in several cabinets as Deputy Secretary, Acting Secretary of Labor and Chief of the Central Budget Bureau during the Shah’s regime. He represented Iran in the International Labor Organization in Geneva. Child labor in the rug weaving industry was one of the main areas of concern in the early 1970’s. After the fall of the Shah, Fred and his family moved to the United States. During their first several years in the United States Fred spent much of his time in France as an international oil consultant. In the summer of 1986 Fred entered the oriental rug business. He traveled to New York and discussed his intention with a number of friends in the business. Mr. Mohammad Kazemi, who was a prominent rug dealer in Garden City, Long Island, suggested Fred work with him for six months to learn the business, then open his own business. Fred and his wife Pat accepted Mr. Kazemi's offer. Fred managed Kazemi Oriental Rugs and Pat worked in the restoration department. Shortly after starting work, a fire destoyed the premises and caused extensive damage to the inventory. Fred hired a number of rug restoration specialists to repair the fire-damaged rugs. These craftsmen were extremely talented and managed to restore 85% of the damaged inventory. During this time Pat worked with the specialists and learned the art of restoring oriental rugs. In the summer of 1988 Fred and Pat left New York for Wilmington to be near Pat’s mother who was suffering from ailing health. Fred Nasseri is an ORRA Certified Appraiser. He is an active and respected member in the Wilmington community.
Mrs. Nasseri has a Bachelor of Science with Honors from the University Of Toulouse in France. Her expertise is in the field of oriental rug restoration including weaving, dying, removing color runs and stubborn stains. She loves tending to her garden and has a special interest in growing exotic flora.
Shahrzad Gardner has a Bachelor of Arts in communication from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington. Shahrzad has been Vice-President of Marketing since 1993. She has been a great asset to the company with her marketing activities and her promotional campaigns have played a major role in the growth and success of the business.
Tim Gardner is the Director of Operations. He has a Bachelor of Commerce Degree in Marketing from the University of Otago in New Zealand. Prior to his employment at the Gallery, Tim was a money market dealer at Westpac, Melbourne. Tim enjoys flying and has a commercial pilot’s license.
Phyllis Loos is responsible for the day-to-day repair and restoration of rugs working under the supervision of Pat Nasseri.
Success and Growth
Integrity, quality of product, hard work, expertise, customer service and community participation were all important components to our success and growth. Additionally, we owe our success to the close working relationship we have with our knowledgeable and helpful Oriental Rug Importers and our friends at the Oriental Rug Retailers of America. We would like to give a special thanks to all of them.
Location and Information
Gallery of Oriental Rugs
4101 Oleander Drive,
Wilmington, NC. 28403
(T) 910-392-2605 (F) 910-392-7878
Fred and Pat Nasseri purchased a 25-acre property on highway I-17 between Wilmington and Myrtle Beach. They are working with architects and builders to construct a 200,000 square feet design center offering, rugs, carpet, high-end furniture, fabrics, paintings, accessories, cabinets, appliances, lighting, wallpaper, bathroom fixtures etc. The Gallery will manage the rugs, wall-to-wall carpet, high-end furniture and an accessories store. The remaining products will be owned and operated by specialist stores.