Wednesday, August 5, 2009

How to select an Oriental Rug

Traditional wisdom says that interior home decorating should begin with an Oriental rug. There are plenty of choices in colors and materials from which to choose a rug and a rug well chosen and well cared for will probably last much longer than anything else in the room. In the olden days, Persian rugs or kilims from Iran were supposed to be the best rugs available but today you find that other eastern countries like India, Nepal, Pakistan, Nepal, Tibet, China and Turkey have been making rugs which have matched and even surpassed the quality of those from Persia.

Before you go out shopping for an Oriental rug, it would be wise to spend some time thinking about the size and color that you would prefer. You may even carry some photos of your room to help you decide. There are plenty of colors and designs to choose from. Next, you have to decide on the how much you are willing to spend on your purchase. The price of an Oriental rug is dependent on the following factors :
- Country from which it comes
- Age
- Condition
- Quality
- Design demand

Counting the knots in an Oriental rug is not the only or most important thing to do. A geometrically designed rug might have fewer than 100 knots in a square inch but a floral pattern extremely detailed might have more than 300 even. Although the regularity and tightness of the rug are of utmost importance, the quality of the wool ascertains the resistance and longevity of the rug. And don't forget to take into account the quality and color fastness of the dyes being used.

Besides, the price of an Oriental rug could also be decided by the prevailing design and color fads. About 50 years ago, orange, brown and green were considered the hot colors; but that is not the case today. The condition of the rugs and age affect the value of second hand rugs. Age will increase the value of the rugs provided they have been well maintained but if not, wear and tear and stains will reduce the value.

The best of rugs are always made from natural fibers with wool, silk and cotton being the most common and silk the most sought after as well as expensive. Wool is the most popular material used to make a Persian rugs or kilims because of its intrinsic properties - wool is long lasting, flexible, is easily dyed and can be woven or spun with ease. Besides, wool is readily available in areas where kilims or Persian rugs are made since you find a lot of nomads tending sheep there.

A fascinating thing about the Persian rugs or kilims is that you can deduce from which tribe the rug came from based solely on the type of wool and dye used. Some wool from sheep is sought after even more than the rest as it gives a certain luster to the Persian rugs or kilims.

Warps are commonly made of cotton as its high strength helps maintain the shape. Besides it maintains its natural white color over time. Another reason is that cotton can be spun into the finest of threads. Hair of camels, goats and horses is often sued to make Persian rugs or kilims to produce unique effects. Camel hair might be used to give a woolen rug additional strength while horse hair might give eye-catching tassels. Wool when mixed with goat hair produces a silky sheen. Silk has always been considered a material of luxury so silk rugs are rare although they might still be produced. They are often included in the dowry of a bride along with other Oriental rugs and treasured as part of the family wealth.

Tag : rugs,area rugs,outdoor rugs,oriental rugs

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