Having a good understanding of how area rugs are made can help you comprehend and evaluate which rugs wear less and last longer than others. Furthermore, it will help you ascertain the type of rug you want to buy within your budget.
Categories of Area Rugs:
There are two distinct categories of area rugs; machine-made, and man-made.
Machine-made rugs are relatively cheaper compared to man-made rugs but they’re not as durable. These rugs come with a wide variety of designs you can choose from. Also, the elaborate designs are conceived by placement of different colors together.
Hand-knotted (custom made) rugs, on the other hand, are a blend of brilliant and creative use of color. Unique details are entangled in each rug depending on the country, city, or village the Weaver was from. Also, these rugs are created using natural dyes for color longevity and as a result, most have become heirlooms in families.
The following are the elements that tie hand-knotted rugs together:
Dyeing can be defined as the process of changing the natural color of textile products like wool or silk. There are two types of dyes; natural dyes and synthetic dyes.
Natural Dyes: Natural dyes were only used until sometime around the 19th century. Natural dyes were made from plant, mineral, and animal dyes. Plant dyes came from roots, fruits, leaves and the bark of plants. Mineral dyes, on the other hand, came from limestone, manganese, cinnabar, malachite, and ochre.
.Synthetic Dyes: In between the 19th century, a demand for handmade rugs increased significantly in the west leading to a production increase in the west. It led to a need for easy to use and less costly dyes hence the development of synthetic dyes came into existence in Western Europe. The first synthetic Dye was developed in the 1800’s. From then onwards, new synthetic dyes followed but after some time, a Persian Leader named “Nadar khan” banned them. Persian weavers started using synthetic dyes again after the modern synthetic chrome dyes were invented in between the first and Second World War.
Weaving is the technique used in producing hand-knotted rugs. There are three major techniques of weaving: hand-tufted, pile weave, and flat weave.
- Pile-Weave: It is common in many rugs. The technique incorporates the creation of knots. Every single knot in a Pile-weaved rug is hand-knotted. A rug can have around a thousand knots per square inch while a skilled weaver ties a single knot in ten seconds.
- Flat-Weave: Flatweave is a weaving technique where knots are not used. Weft stands are used both as the foundation and for creating the patterns while Warp strands are used only as the foundation. This technique is called Flat-weave because the surface looks flat as no knots are used during the weaving process.
- Hand-Tufted: This weaving technique incorporates creating the rugs without tying knots into the foundation. Hand-tufted rugs are less time-consuming compared to hand tying every knot. Without a doubt, it requires a highly skilled craftsman. Hand-tufted rugs are more durable and precisely weaved.