Archive for March, 2011

Persian Carpets And Oriental Rugs: The Basic Structure

Persian and Oriental Rugs: A weaver's toolboxRugs are made in countries such as Iran, Pakistan, India, Turkey, and Nepal, just to name a few. Although there is a large variety of patterns and styles when it comes to area rugs, the basic structure is more or less the same, except for flat woven rugs (Klims) which consist of warps and wefts with no pile. Here, we will concentrate on pile rugs.

The loom is either wood (in villages) or metal (in cities). Around it, and to the direction of the length, the strands of warp are wrapped several times with a specific space between each strand, keeping the same tension on all of them as to avoid wrinkles on the finished product. The thickness of the warp as well as the space between them, determines the tightness of the weave. Smaller knots can be tied on thinner warps resulting in a higher number of knots per square inch (KPSI). This warp can be cotton, wool, or silk. However, a cotton warp is the most common.

The weaving process starts at the bottom, usually from left to right just as in English writing. Each knot is fastened around two strands of warp. The warps can be parallel to each other, as in Hamadan and Malayer rugs, or form a 45 degree angle against each other, as in Kashan and Isfahan rugs. Knots are of two types: symmetric or asymmetric (Turkish or Persian). Over each row of knots, either one or two shots of weft are inserted. In single-weft weaving, the weft loosely goes over a warp and under the next warp and so on. In double-weft weaving, the first weft is pulled tightly over and under the warps, but the second weft sits more loosely on top of this. The thickness of the warp and the weft, the color of the weft, as well as the type of the weave, are strong indications as to the origin of a rug. However, the ability to determine the exact place of the origin in area rugs requires years of experience and hard work.

Rug weavers follow the pattern drawn on a graphing paper called a cartoon, as in a road map. This cartoon is prepared by artists specializing in this trade. However, weavers in villages producing nomadic rugs do not get instructions from a cartoon, but have it in their hearts. In most rugs with a symmetric pattern, the cartoon shows one quarter of the rug. As the weaver gets to the middle of each row, the graphing paper is turned 180 degrees to proceed with the second half. When the rug is halfway done, this paper is rotated to weave the top half.

The rug is eventually done. It is cut off the loom, and gets its first wash. When it dries up, the pile is shaved to give the surface a smooth finish. This process also results in better showing of the design. The rug is then stretched in order for it to lay straight on the floor. Chain stitching is done on the fringes to protect the pile and keep it from unraveling. On the sides, selvedge binding is added by wrapping wool around two or three of the outermost warps on which no knots were tied for this very purpose. This is now a finished product.

Weaving a rug requires not only skills and patience, but also lots of hard work. An experienced weaver can tie up around 14,000 knots in a single day. For a high quality rug, this means about 2.5 square feet of weaving for each month of tedious work. Simple measures of care and maintenance are absolutely necessary to protect these works of art. If properly cared for, a good quality rug will definitely live longer than any human being has ever lived.

Top Quality Persian and Oriental Rugs

, , , , , , , , , , , ,

No Comments

A Dialogue Between The Rug And The Loom

I heard Miss Ali as I walked down the street

Screaming “Hooray, it’s finally complete”.

I asked as with hurry, I ran to Ms. Ali,

What is it, what is your jolly?

She answered with the most delight,

Our completed rug is being sold tonight.

I couldn’t help but look at their art

This had a world of beauty in its heart

I peaked inside their workshop to see

A piece of art that seemed to stun me

I heard, as I saw the amazing creation,

The rug and the loom had a conversation,

Emotionally the rug stated:

“After so long, tomorrow we are being separated”

Oh dear, in your stitches and chains I have come to be

And throughout my life you have taken care of me.

And with your great wisdom I have learned

About whom I should be concerned

Now tell me, tell me dear loom

For man is harsh and rough I assume,

Why do they weave us and paint us?

And attach us, and create us?

Then separate us from our loom,

And lay us in a living room,

Why do they angrily separate

Us from those to whom we relate?

The attitude of the rug, the loom did not oppose

“That’s how it goes I suppose”

Once on the warp of wisdom and the weft of love

Man descended on earth from above

Then man found the rug and loom’s laws

And then explored them, because:

He was once a rug and had become

Separated from his loom which he had learnt his life from

And had fallen into his owner’s hands, Earth

To give to a new way of life, Birth

Can man reconnect with the heavens?

His loom as a flower of happiness

Could he again become a bloom?

Let us see what you assume

Even though he wants to connect and not remain split

There is another great law that prevents it

The law that keeps heaven from revealing

Is the law of the rug and the ceiling?

You’re going to be lying on a floor

Where you have no companions anymore

Looking up, facing the sky

Always looking the ceiling in the eye

If you want to connect to the ceiling

And share with him the way you’re feeling

If that was possible perhaps,

The whole house will have to collapse

You will have to wait till the roof evermore

Comes down to meet you on the floor

Same with man, he has to wait,

Until the heavens show and create

A better place with more joy

That’s how it works, my little boy

, , , , , , , , , , , , ,

No Comments