José Serrano came to Portugal as a fugitive from the Spanish Civil War. In 1920 he founded Serrano e Filhos, a shop dedicated to the sale of woollen and related products. The shop gradually became specialised in wools for Arraiolos carpets. The business remained in family hands for four generations, until 2011, when the economic recession hit particularly hard and it had to be bailed out by two employees.
Those two employees – Maria Amélia Coutinho and Manuel Joaquim Gonçalves – are the current owners. Manuel Gonçalves had already worked in the shop for 25 years. He heeded a calling to keep the whole heritage it protected and promoted alive. That heritage includes not only the selling of wools, but also the cleaning and restoration of Arraiolos carpets and the safeguarding of the know-how that goes into making them, in the form of courses and actions. It is the place to visit if one wants to make Arraiolos carpets, do cross-stitch work, crochet or make costume jewellery. The shop sells all the materials, instruction magazines and kits that enable one to master each of the techniques.
Wools and materials for making Arraiolos carpets.