We've had limited editions of art, books, coins, plates and jewelry, but limited edition rugs are something to really sink your feet into. Don't bother to bring your ruler to count the hand-knots in the back, though: These are new rugs done on antique eighteenth-century French looms in patterns copied from rare museum pieces. A hunting scene condensed to 8x12 ($749) is one of six patterns available in this series at Alexandria's Rugtime Stand, whose guiding policy is discounting imported machine-made floor coverings twenty percent or more. An international melting pot of wool carpets, Rugtime's offerings scorn nationalism - an Iranian design springs from a Dutch rug made on an Axminister loom (8x12, $875), Aubusson designs glow from wool rugs loomed in Hong Kong (4x5, $359), sculptured contemporary rugs from Belgium (4x5, $179) share space wiht more traditional petit point designs from England (5x8, $289). Patterns on patterns. Which doesn't mean you have to drag a bagful of wallpaper and upholstery samples to see if everything blends or shouts. Since rugs change character in different settings, Rugtime's will let you take your choice home for forty-eight hours, obligation free, to ensure compatibility. That's an option you never get in the markets of Baghdad.
ALexandria's Rugtime Stand. 400 King St., Alexandria. Open Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Saturady, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sunday, noon to 6 p.m. 683-6022.