Just in time for the Denison Downtown Loft Tour, Nitia Musico finished a 17 foot by 12 foot custom rug for the main living area in the Musicos’ downtown loft.

Carefully pieced with various colors of rectangular carpet segments, Musico sculpts every line of color change and serges all the edges with a portable machine. The rectangles are placed so that the furniture does not cover the design.

Rugs are Musico’s passion.

Over the years, Musico has sculpted many children’s rugs. These rugs start with a picture drawn by a youngster. Musico then enlarges the image and pieces and sculpts the design into a rug. Small rugs are also very versatile for wall hangings and combinations of wall designs.

Musico also does a lot of uniquely designed lobby and restaurant furniture for customers anywhere from Denison down to Dallas and Houston. She also does a lot of upholstery and refurbishing work for Texoma customers who are looking for a change in their décor.

While Nitia Musico does most of the fabric work, her husband Mike helps tremendously with the wood frames for beds, headboards, upholstered walls, etc. Some projects are very large and have to be built on site where Mike and Nitia work as a team.

“I remember when I was 3 or 4 locking my sister, Laura, out of the room so that I could glue and staple tissue boxes together,” Nitia Musico said.

She remembers visiting her grandmother in Beaumont where she made a skirt for her mother. By age 6, she was using a full sized Singer sewing machine for her creations.

By the time she was 8 years old, Musico had entered boarding school in England where she learned about home economics. She remembers learning how to make patterns to make skirts and aprons. From ages 8 to 14, Musico attended the School of St. Mary’s and St. Anne’s, a girl’s school in Staffordshire, England. From 14 to 18, Musico attended Dartington which offered all forms of art such as ceramics, painting and wood working.

“We had a four-day week along with a project day,” she said. “Sometimes we would have a project week.”

After studying all the arts for a year at Wrexan College, where she was introduced to many creative fields, Musico chose to enroll in Bradford Art College to study furniture and textiles. While Nitia Musico was attending college, she also went to work as an apprentice at a furniture maker in the small town of Silden.

Six months after graduation, Nitia Musico headed for the U.S. with her portfolio. She took a job as a nanny for three years during which time she learned a great deal about children and started making furnishings and rugs for them. She continues to use the skills she honed during that time as she works today making custom rugs and whimsical furniture for children’s rooms.

“Nanny is not what I went to college for, so I quit,” she said.

Realizing how much she missed the furniture and textile work she was trained to do, Nitia Musico first built her word-of-mouth business using a compressor in a rental garage.

About 23 years later, Nitia Musico still enjoys the creative process and likes to see the final results of a project.

“I find it very satisfying to take a blank wall and after seeing the project to completion say, ‘Wow! Look what I accomplished!’” she said.

While new cushions, re-upholstery work and big projects provide a large part of Nitia Musico’s busy work schedule, rug sculpting and designing are still her creative passion. A wide variety of her custom furnishings including rugs are on display at 408 West Main Street in Denison.