Beginner’s Guide To Identifying Oriental Rugs

Do you have an oriental rug in your house? Do you know how to identify an authentic oriental rug? It is not a simple task for most people to identify a handmade or machine made oriental rug. Another factor is handwoven and hand-knotted rugs are also considered to be oriental rugs due to their quality. Here are some of the factors go into quality of an oriental rug:

  • Quality of the yarn used
  • Type of dyes used
  • The knot count factor

Hand Knotted Rugs

Hand-knotted rugs that are made through a loom are specially designed and knotted by hand only. Hand-knotted rugs are one of the oldest styles of rugs made in the world. They date back centuries. Rugs were made all over the world in places like Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, China, India, Pakistan, Persia, Turkey, Spain, Serbia, Bulgaria, France, and England. This ancient art form is truly to be amazed as many rugs are unique and very well made. The size of the rug depends on the size of the loom. The weaver of the rug usually interweaves the “knots” into the rug’s groundwork, which is hand tied and is something that makes the rugs’ pile. This operation is very time consuming and tedious work which is one reason why a genuine oriental rug is so valuable.

Stripping Effect (Color Changes)

In an authentic oriental rug, you will see changes in color in the rug. This striping effect is the result of dyes used to change the wool during the weaving process and atmospheric conditions. Most color changes in an oriental rug are known as abrash. It is hard to find these conditions in a machine made rug because machines are more consistent and quicker in weaving a rug.

Visual Differences

There is always a strong difference between a machine made and handmade oriental rug. One of the biggest differences is the back of the rug. Most machine-made rugs are made to be plain and bland on the back. Every handmade rug is colorful on both sides of the carpet. When the machine made rug is woven its edges are overstitched and a fringe is applied. A handmade rug’s fringe runs throughout the length of the rug which is referred to as a warp.

Price Difference

The price of an authentic oriental rug and a machine made rug is vastly different. Beware many rug salesmen will try to sell you an alternative that is made from a cheaper material like Rayon which is a chemically altered fiber. Beware of rug sellers that claim they are made from silk. Yes, they may have silk in them, but they are not woven with silk throughout the rug. If you are traveling abroad to China, Egypt or Afghanistan where they offer handmade oriental rugs, you can buy them cheaper there.

If are having a hard time determining the genuineness of an oriental rug, don’t go it alone. Turn to an expert to help you find the right rug for you and authenticate whether it is a genuine oriental rug.