All posts by John Ahdoot

How To Clean An Oriental Rug: A Complete Guide

Oriental rug owners love and appreciate the unique beauty their carpet offers their home.
Whether hung as a piece of artwork or placed on the floor to add warmth to a room, antique Persian and Oriental rugs add a one-of-a-kind personality wherever they are found.

However, Oriental rugs must be cleaned frequently. Just like other fabrics within a home, Oriental rugs are prone to:

  • Spots and stains.
  • Imperfections from foot traffic.
  • Accumulation of pet dander.
  • Buildup of dust, dirt or pollen.
  • Infestation of dust mites, mold or fungi.
  • And more.

What’s more, their unique composition and delicate nature necessitate proper Oriental rug cleanings. These ensure than an antique rug’s colors remain vibrant and that the Oriental rug remains in immaculate condition for many years.

Oriental Rug Cleaning Dog pet Dander

Why Should You Get An Oriental Rug Cleaning?

An antique oriental rug cleaning is instrumental in keeping your Persian rug beautiful and in pristine condition for many years. Just like other valuable items within your home, caring for your Oriental rug properly will preserve its appearance and usage long-term.

However, many antique, Oriental and Persian rugs are composed of unique fibers and dyes – many of which derive from natural sources. Therefore, professional Oriental rug cleanings should be performed regularly and by a team of certified Oriental rug cleaning experts.

In fact, certified antique rug cleaners – like Ahdoot Oriental Rugs – are well-versed in caring for delicate Oriental rugs. Plus, they use the proper Persian rug cleaning tools and materials, removing shampoos and products effectively. This reduces potential allergens and minimizes the damage that can be done to Oriental rugs via water or other products.

How To Clean Oriental Rugs

How To Clean An Oriental Rug

There are a few tips to ensure your Oriental rug is cleaned safely and effectively.

1. Spot Clean Your Oriental Rug

Small blemishes, spots and stains can be safely spot-cleaned at home! Simply dilute mild rug clean in lukewarm water and gently spot clean with a soft washcloth or soft sponge.

However, large stains and complete Oriental rug cleanings should always be performed by professionals like Ahdoot Oriental Rugs.

2. Vacuum Your Persian Rug Thoroughly

Just like any carpet or fabric furniture, your Oriental rug should be vacuumed completely before it is cleaned.

The best professional Oriental rug cleaners, such as Ahdoot Oriental Rugs, will perform this task for you. They have access to the best vacuum cleaners that remove hair, dust, dirt, and allergens while maintaining the integrity of the Persian rug.

3. Experts Will Clean Your Oriental Rug

After the Oriental rug is vacuumed, professional antique rug cleaners will wash your Persian rug with a mild soap.

Although some antique rug owners may attempt to perform their own Oriental rug cleaning with a mild detergent, it’s in their best interests to find a reputable and certified Oriental rug cleaning company and allow them to complete the cleaning.

Those professionals understand how to care for delicate fabrics and antique rugs – and that expertise will ensure your Oriental rug is returned to you completely clean and in excellent condition.

4. Lay The Rug Flat To Dry

After the rug is cleaned, professional Oriental rug cleaners will lay the Persian rug flat to air dry.

By prioritizing flat airdrying, expert rug cleaners ensure that every Oriental rug dries smoothly and that the fibers are protected. This enables Oriental rugs to have a longer life with their owners.

Bonus Tip: Check Your Oriental Rug’s Label Before Performing Any Antique Rug Cleaning Service

This may seem like an obvious step, but it is surprisingly one that many people forget. Before you do anything to your Oriental rug, check to see if it has a label or instructional care guide and, if so, read it thoroughly.

These instructions may provide insight into how to spot clean your rug or what fibers and dyes make up the Oriental rug. This can be extremely helpful for professional Oriental rug cleaning.

Why You Should Choose Ahdoot Oriental Rug Cleaning Services

Ahdoot’s Oriental rug cleaning experts are certified in antique, Persian and Oriental rug care. They know not to use astringent products and heavy machinery. Instead, they offer gentle hands-on care and cleaning to each Oriental rug.

In addition, Ahdoot Oriental Rugs also uses non-toxic 100% organic rug cleaning products. These completely biodegradable detergents and products expand each Oriental rugs’ lifespan while cleaning them fully and effectively.

Our plant-based Oriental cleaning products and techniques are also ideal for households with children, pets or people prone to allergies and asthma. They drastically reduce triggers and pathogens.

Are you searching for a professional Oriental rug cleaning company in New York, New Jersey, Florida or beyond? Contact Ahdoot Oriental Rug Cleaning to learn more about our New York City, New Jersey, and Florida rug cleaning services HERE or call us at 212-290-8484.

Plus, learn more about our Persian, Oriental & Antique rug cleaning services, Persian & Oriental rug repair services, and Persian & Oriental rug appraisal services.

Textiles & Home Fashion: An Interview with Professor Gayathri Banavara of LIM College

As we continue to connect as a global society and marketplace, the textiles and home fashion industries are experiencing an influx of new ideas, cultural access and sustainable practices from around the world. Nowhere is this more evident than at LIM College, where we interviewed Professor Gayathri Banavara, who serves as a faculty member in LIM’s Marketing, Management & Finance Department.

Read our interview to learn more about how this evolution has impacted LIM College’s faculty, its curriculum and its students.

JOHN AHDOOT: What can you tell us about LIM College, particularly to those who might be interested in home fashion and design? 

PROFESSOR BANAVARA: LIM College is exclusively focused on the study of business and fashion. LIM fosters a unique connection between real-world experience and academic study in business principles, including merchandising, marketing and management in a global environment. LIM offers undergraduate degrees in International Business, Fashion Media, Fashion Merchandising, Visual Merchandising, Marketing, and Management, as well as master’s degrees in Fashion Merchandising & Retail Management, Visual Merchandising, Fashion Marketing, and Global Fashion Supply Chain Management. Bachelor’s degree students can opt for a concentration (focused area of study) in Home Fashions. 

JOHN AHDOOT: What kinds of courses do you offer in the area of home fashions? 

PROFESSOR BANAVARA: Among the courses we offer are: Home Fashions, Textiles, Textiles for the Home, and Home Fashions Marketing. 

JOHN AHDOOT: Have you noticed any trends in the types of textiles students and others in the industry are using these days in home fashions? Do natural materials still play a big role, or are synthetic materials more popular? 

PROFESSOR BANAVARA: Recent trends indicate that natural fabrics have taken on a major role in the home fashions. The Market Week in NYC saw cottons and linens playing a major role in many product categories, including bedding, windows, and bath towels. Although synthetic fabric is still in the market in almost all product categories, natural fabrics have ruled the industry in recent years.

Antique Persian Rug

JOHN AHDOOT: Where do Oriental and Persian rugs fit into home fashions and how are they typically utilized by today’s practicing professionals? 

PROFESSOR BANAVARA: Oriental and Persian rugs play a major role in home fashions. Although there are genuine handmade rugs, machine-made rugs have flooded the market. Which rugs are in a given store depends on the brand and the target market. Rugs and carpets pull a room together and enhance its overall look. Oriental and Persian rugs have played a major role in traditional home settings and now, with the new designs that are entering the market, they are moving into modern/contemporary home looks. 

JOHN AHDOOT: When it comes to international marketing of home fashions, what do you teach students who are interested in curating from and selling to markets outside of the U.S.? 

PROFESSOR BANAVARA: In today’s global world, curating from areas throughout around the world and selling to markets around the globe is key. In my view, cultures around the world each have unique products that reflect their unique outlook on life and how they live.

Customers want to own pieces that are unique and “speak” to their own individuality. These customers have often traveled widely or are travel enthusiasts. They have a high awareness of what they want as well as what makes them feel “at home.” The key is bringing customization and personalization to home fashions and connecting the customer to the product/brand at a personal level.

handmade oriental rug

JOHN AHDOOT: Millennials are increasingly moving to more handmade, sustainable products that mostly come from natural sources. Have you witnessed this trend in your students? If so, has it changed your approach to coursework? 

PROFESSOR BANAVARA: Yes. Students are more aware of hand-made products and sustainability in their everyday products, including home fashions. I incorporate this in all my teaching. Whether it is marketing, branding or entrepreneurship, my coursework involves approaching those topics with sustainability and sourcing in mind to engage and educate students. 

JOHN AHDOOT: During their time at the school, what kinds of textile-related skills are students being exposed to, and how are they using this in the area of home fashion? Do handmade rugs ever play a role in student projects? 

PROFESSOR BANAVARA: LIM students can take a course on textiles for the home furnishings industry, which provides them with an understanding of the fiber properties and construction in bedding, bath and upholstery products. It also covers textile dyeing, printing and finishing and analyzing fabric swatches. Additionally, sustainability and environmental impact issues within the textile industry are discussed, as well as new fabrications and technologies.

Turkish Carpet Weaver

JOHN AHDOOT: When working on cultural fashions for the home, do you encourage students to acquire authentic pieces from that area of the world, or can they achieve the same aesthetic from domestic vendors who offer the same look? For example, genuine Peruvian-made textiles versus locally produced textiles in a Peruvian style. 

PROFESSOR BANAVARA: Our courses focus on the marketing of home fashions, so it is about determining what is appropriate for the target market. 

JOHN AHDOOT: Are there any new or traditional styles that you’ve seen earning recognition in home fashion? 

PROFESSOR BANAVARA: There is a trend towards natural fabrics, textures and colors. Incorporating nature in prints is also a trend. Additionally, there is a trend of digitally printed, more engineered top of the bed products. Velvet trims, chunky knits and long tassels are still popular. In brief, there is a mix of new and traditional styles using a variety of fabrics. 

JOHN AHDOOT: What advice can you give people who might be interested in studying home fashions or implementing new twists on textiles at home? 

PROFESSOR BANAVARA: Home fashions is a fast-growing field. The home fashions industry offers a lot of opportunities in terms of designing, manufacturing and marketing the products. The market in general is transparent. Consumers are more aware of the products, including where they are made and what they are made of, and they are demanding unique and customizable products. The future will include greater use of technology in the products, as well as greater use materials which are sustainable and socially responsible.

What Does Your Oriental Rug Say About You?

Most handmade Oriental rugs tell a unique story with their designs, whether this story is about the artist, the location where it was manufactured, or specific cultural narratives or religious statements.

Yet, a handmade rug can also tell a different kind of story—one that says something about the owner rather than the rug itself—and allows you to peer inside the hearts and minds of every rug collector.

My Own Oriental Rug Journey

When I first became interested in Oriental, Persian and Turkish rugs, it was several years after I had spent some time pursuing my education and other interests. My family had been involved in the rug industry for years, but at the time I was more interested in learning about computers and science than I was in participating in the family business.

Before I finished attending college, my feelings about being a part of the rug business began to change. Whether it was due to my evolving tastes in the arts or a simple lesson in becoming an adult, I began to really get a grasp for the true beauty behind these exquisite, handmade masterpieces and everything they offered.

As a result, I officially made the transition into being a rug enthusiast—and it wasn’t long before I was fully committed to helping others explore their own passion for Oriental and Persian rugs.

The Making of Ahdoot

In 1976 I started my own family business, Ahdoot Oriental Rugs, as a way of making handmade rugs more accessible to the public. During that time, Oriental rugs were thought of as something that only high society could be a part of. But the truth was, there were a lot of people who appreciated the fine handiwork of rug weavers, as well as the unique colorings and designs, that came from all walks of life.

Meeting these individuals, couples and families over the years has taught me one thing about the handmade arts—and Oriental rugs in particular—it is that anyone can be part of the worldwide rug collecting community. All it takes is a love for rugs and, like any hobby, a little patience in learning where to find the most beautiful rugs in New York City and beyond.

So when you finally find your first rug, or you’re merely adding to a growing collection, what does having this interest really say about you? Here are just a few characteristics I’ve seen in other enthusiasts over the years that could very well apply to you as well.

You Care About Quality

No matter what industry is being discussed, today’s consumers have a deep interest in finding out what their purchased item consists of, whether it’s food, clothing or anything else. For most rug enthusiasts in particular, this means knowing what kinds of materials went into the creation of their Oriental rug.

From a rug’s wool to its dyes and knot count, rug collectors often spend a great deal of time educating themselves on what to look for in terms of a rug’s quality, and usually won’t settle for a mediocre carpet.

You Admire Authenticity

Modern rug-making has taken an interesting turn over the past century, as many rugs that are available on the market today were mass-produced by industrial machines housed in large commercial shops. Discerning rug collectors know to avoid these types of rugs altogether, and instead look for rugs that are both handmade, as well as made from materials that were sourced locally from nearby sheep herds and those who create natural dyes.

You Feel Like Part of a Global Community

One of the more unique things about Oriental rugs is their extensive history, which crosses thousands of years, dozens of countries and generations of families living in small villages. Depending on the type of design you’re most interested in, your piece could emanate from places like China, Egypt, Europe, India, Peru, Northwestern Iran or countless other locations across the globe, and give you access to a culture and community you might otherwise be unaware of.

Over my 40+ years in the rug industry, it has been these three things that have consistently been part of the magic I’ve been able to witness in both my clients and fellow rug enthusiasts. And it’s this kind of magic that has furthered my own fascination with Oriental rugs.

3 Interior Design Tips Using Oriental Rugs

When you live in New York City, there is sometimes the expectation that your home will have at least some principles of interior design being applied indoors—even if you live in a small studio apartment. Yet, not everyone who lives in the Big Apple has the time, or the skillset, to really make their interiors pop with the kind of flair and aesthetic that professional designers provide.

Since Ahdoot specializes in Oriental rugs, we figured this was a great opportunity for us to share our own insights on decorating with various types of rugs around the home. While we can’t necessarily give your home a complete makeover, we can provide assistance on how to make your handmade carpets shine, no matter what room you decide to put them in.

With this in mind, here are a few interior design tips you can use when you’re searching for the perfect way to highlight your Oriental rug.

Ahdoot Oriental Rugs

Put Your Rug Front and Center

People often spend a great deal of time selecting furniture and accessories for their home, pairing both patterns and color to get the ultimate visual effect. However, if you build a great foundation and dominant theme to work from, such as an Oriental rug in the center your living room or kitchen, everything else tends to come together quite nicely.

Many designers would suggest purchasing your rug first before deciding on the room’s other elements—and we at Ahdoot fully agree. The reason for this is so you can make a better assessment of the paints, patterns and materials that will complement your rug and let it become the soul of your living space. When the colors in your couch, lamps and tables harmonize with the bolder colors in your rug, it not only connects them visually with the rug at the center of the room, but keeps the room’s energy directed there as well.

Dog on Oriental Rug

Get a Family-Friendly Rug

If your home doesn’t get a lot of foot traffic, you can probably get away with having a rug built from silk or other fine material. For people who have kids, pets or lots of guests over to their home, however, having a handmade rug made from wool and featuring a darker palette is probably the better option.

Not only is an Oriental rug easier to clean when it’s made from wool, but the material can withstand a great deal of foot traffic when compared to rugs that are produced with other kinds of textiles. Additionally, if your lifestyle is especially social or you and your family spend a lot of time at home, you might also consider acquiring a rug with a more complex pattern that will hide spots and spills between professional cleanings.

CityRugs Hallway

Be Edgy or Traditional, It’s Your Choice

Decorating with Oriental rugs is becoming a new interior design trend, particularly among millennials. The reason for this is a handmade rug’s flexibility when it comes to either supporting or building a room’s aesthetic.

At Ahdoot, we often suggest purchasing a rug that’s complementary to your tastes, but still makes a statement about your room and your personality. This can be translated as having a traditional room tied together with a rug featuring strong colors and eclectic patterns, or offsetting a room’s modern décor with a subtler addition that combines a traditional look with a contemporary setting.

If you’d like even more inspiration on decorating your home with Oriental rugs, visit our rug shop in person or contact us via our website. We’re always happy to help anyone get the rug and look they’re trying to achieve.

3,000-Year-Old Textiles Discovered by Team of Israeli Archaeologists

Throughout time, textiles were largely produced as functional pieces, serving as everything from wearable garments and tapestries to wash cloths and floor coverings. Yet, because the materials used by ancient peoples were of organic origin, many of these textiles have been unable to survive the harsh conditions of their country’s climate, and the millennia which have passed since their creation.

Once in a while, however, discoveries are made that offer a unique perspective on the way people in a particular area lived and how their handmade arts were influenced by the area’s unique culture. Such was the case with a recent finding in Israel’s Arava Valley.

An Unlikely Location and Rare Discovery

The Arava Valley is located in the far southeast portion of Israel, where ancient copper mines once supported a thriving society during what many believe as the reign of King Solomon. And it was from these copper mines that a team of researchers and archaeologists from Tel Aviv University discovered an assortment of well-preserved textiles and other rare artifacts.

Because these copper mines are situated in the desert, where arid conditions have a greater tendency to maintain the integrity of organic materials, the textiles remained surprisingly unspoiled by time and the elements. In addition to the fabrics, archaeologists also discovered seeds, tools and leather, which shed even greater light on the chiefly nomadic culture of the Edomites, who have been credited with operating these mines thousands of years ago.

Speaking to the rare and historical nature of this discovery, Tel Aviv University’s Dr. Ben-Yosef said in a press release regarding the find:

“No textiles have ever been found at excavation sites like Jerusalem, Megiddo and Hazor, so this provides a unique window into an entire aspect of life from which we’ve never had physical evidence before.

“The wide variety of fabrics also provides new and important information about the Edomites, who, according to [ancient records], warred with the Kingdom of Israel. We found simply woven, elaborately decorated fabrics worn by the upper echelon of their stratified society. Luxury grade fabric adorned the highly skilled, highly respected craftsmen managing the copper furnaces.”

How scientists were able to date these findings to 3,000 years ago, however, actually came as a result of radiocarbon dating on thousands of seeds discovered at the site. Upon confirmation of their antiquity, the seeds then established these textiles, some of which were only 5 centimeters in both width and length, as the only textiles ever uncovered from this location and from this period in history.

In the press release, TAU masters student Vanessa Workman also pointed out how this discovery gave researchers more information on the region’s trade and economic practices in that day, comparing the mine to a “silicon valley” in terms of copper production. And it was this high level of production that helped to both supply and support workshops that manufactured these specialized textiles.

“We found linen, which was not produced locally. It was most likely from the Jordan Valley or Northern Israel. The majority of the fabrics were made of sheep’s wool, a cloth that is seldom found in this ancient period. This tells us how developed and sophisticated both their textile craft and trade networks must have been.”

Would you like to view a collection of ancient textiles in person or get more information? Visit our showroom or explore the textiles we have available in our Rug Shop to see these handmade wonders for yourself.

Are Handmade and Antique Rugs Becoming Harder to Find?

In the past decade, Oriental rugs have been experiencing a market resurgence thanks to growing interest from younger generations and celebrities, whose homes are often decorated in beautiful handmade rugs, and are then featured in style and design publications.

As a result, rugs have become more commonplace in retail centers and bargain outlets across the United States. But what people often don’t know is that these rugs are not only machine-made articles, but are often made of substandard materials that will only last a few months or a few years.

For those who buy these types of rugs, durability is not always an issue. Sometimes purchasers are more interested in the look of a rug than its quality, and in this case, machine-made rugs many times fulfill this type of demand.

However, there are far too many times when these rugs are misrepresented by their dealers, and even sold at a premium, without the buyer truly knowing if their rug is an antique – or at the very least, if it’s been made by the hands of an artist.

While the market has been diluted to a degree by rugs produced in factories, there are still plenty of antique and handmade rugs available if you know where to look – and what to look for. In a recent article, we listed 5 things to look for in handmade rugs, which is a great guide to help you get started. Yet, speaking to a specialist like those found at Ahdoot will give you an even greater insight into the importance and differences between handmade and machine-made rugs.

What’s important about a rug being handmade? Well, there are many reasons, but most notably it means your rug will increase in value rather than becoming an item you throw away after a short time or when it falls apart. Handmade rugs, and particularly antique rugs, only increase in value as they age, whereas many modern rugs can be related to an automobile purchase, where their value begins dropping the moment they leave the store.

Another reason for seeking out an antique rug is its exclusivity. With so many machine-made rugs being produced, and the majority being made in large batches, there is a good chance a rug you select online is already owned by thousands of other people.

With handmade and antique rugs, however, you know you’re getting a one-of-a-kind work of art! In today’s world of mass production, this can really set you apart when it comes to home decorating, and it usually coincides with a greater understanding of the cultures these rugs come from as you learn about their places of origin.

If you’re interested in learning more about the unique properties of Oriental, Persian and Turkish rugs, please visit our gallery or contact us online to speak with a rug specialist. We are always happy to help anyone interested in learning the profound differences that exist between handmade and machine-made rugs.

Infographic: What’s in Your Rug? Spring Cleaning Edition

It’s never too early to begin planning for a thorough spring cleaning. Oriental rugs, carpets and other places in your home accumulate dust and dirt more quickly than you might think. Let’s take a look at a few of the reasons you should start planning now for a clean rug and a clean home.

Ahdoot-Spring-Cleaning-Infographic

The Role of Handmade Rugs in Religions Around the World

It’s not uncommon for people to immediately think about the Islamic faith when considering the tradition of using rugs in prayer and other religious rituals. However, there are a number of religions across the world and throughout time that have also used rugs as part of their individual and group worship.

Though many rugs on today’s Oriental rug market aren’t used for religious purposes, they often come from countries and people who employ religious themes, in addition secular subjects, in their construction. From India come rugs with Hindi designs, from Muslim countries stem Islamic motifs and even Buddhist and Christian beliefs are portrayed on rugs from places in Asia and European nations.

With that in mind, here is a brief history of how rugs have played an important part in many of these cultures.

Rugs in the Jewish Religion

On Yom Kippur, rugs have often been used when Orthodox Jews kneel and bow on stone or tile floors. Originally, parishioners used towels to kneel upon, but these were soon replaced with handmade rugs due to both the beauty and comfort they presented.

While it’s not always common amongst every Jewish sect, the practice of using these rugs is part of what’s considered prostration, where individuals put their backsides near to the ground and lower themselves for a period of prayer. In some synagogues, rugs are also used to sit upon in lieu of chairs or benches, though this is most common in the Karaite community.

Rugs in Christianity

Rugs haven’t often been utilized in Christianity, yet there have been numerous instances where handmade textiles featured Christian themes throughout history. In fact, an early Christian sect known as the Coptics, who originated in Egypt in the 1st century AD, produced these textiles from linen or wool and used them in religious burial ceremonies, with many of these articles still surviving to this day.

From the Medieval and Renaissance periods, too, have been discovered textiles featuring everything from important religious figures to those of deity, and often made from the very same materials and from similar looms as Oriental rugs.

Islamic Prayer Rugs

Of all the religions, the Islamic faith is by far the most prolific in the use of handmade rugs, which are usually pile carpets placed between the ground and those who are praying or worshipping. On these rugs is often found a niche, which represents the mihrab (a niche in the wall of a mosque), pointing towards Mecca where Muslims direct all of their prayers.

Other decorations included in Islamic prayer rugs are commonly attributed to their area of origin, which can range from tribal and village designs, to various other types denoting a wide range of symbolism and uniqueness from a particular artist or family.

Buddhist Rugs

Though rugs were common in Buddhist culture and history, early writings indicate they were most frequently owned by those who served as prominent religious figures. Despite this, Buddhist rugs are still very common, and their significance stretches back for centuries, if not millennia, as items to meditate upon or as ornamental décor.

One of the more unique elements of Buddhist rugs is their use of shocking designs, as they sometimes depict what many Westerners would term as shocking in nature, including flayed animal and human skins. The reason behind these designs is the Buddhist’s pursuit of bodily detachment and the search for a higher level of consciousness. Yet, many of these rugs also include other subjects as well, such as Lotus blossoms or other indigenous flowers, religious figures, local wildlife or mandala-like designs.

Want to learn more about the designs and uses for Oriental, Persian and Turkish rugs? Come to our showroom or visit our rug shop to view extraordinary carpets from around the world. Ahdoot offers every service available to new rug collectors and enthusiasts, including cleaning, repair and appraisal on any carpet you purchase or already own. Visit us today!

What Types of Oriental Rugs are Good for High-Traffic Areas?

As you begin your search for an Oriental, Persian or Turkish rug, one of the first questions you should ask yourself during the process is: Where will I likely be placing this rug in my home or office? It’s an important question to consider, as many times clients underestimate the amount of foot traffic taking place in the very areas where their rug will be situated.

In truth, the large majority of handmade wool rugs will be perfectly suited for these kinds of high-traffic areas, as their durability is often without question or exception. However, there are also many rugs, even wool rugs, that won’t stand up to constant wear from a steady stream of foot traffic, or the kinds of wear which can result from household pets and youngsters.

Materials to Avoid in High-Traffic Areas

While the list is not extensive, there are two types of rugs you should definitely steer away from when looking for a carpet that will stand the test of time, particularly in high-traffic home and office areas. The first of these is silk, which is a visually stunning material, but not durable by any means. Over time, silk rugs not only lose their shine when being exposed to foot traffic, but they can also fall apart rather quickly, causing frayed edges and lackluster designs that were at one time quite exquisite.

The second material to avoid is actually a style of rug – the shag carpet. When these types of rugs are laid out in the open and presented with even the smallest quantities of traffic, they will quickly lay flat and wear out. Then, as you’d expect, you’ll no longer be walking on the rug itself, but rather on the side of your Oriental rug’s pile.

Extend the Life of Your Handmade Oriental Rug

Even though wool rugs will hold up considerably well, and for a fairly extended length of time, one way you can improve their lifespan is by putting a rug pad underneath them for protection against wear.

As unexpected as it might seem, Oriental rugs tend to wear from the bottom rather than the top due to a rubbing of the knots against the floor. By using a pad under your prized carpet, you’re essentially creating a “shock absorber” between the floor’s surface and the bottom of the rug, which not only serves as a buffer for your rug’s knots, but also holds the rug in place.

Consider Your Rug’s Color

Beyond its materials, what colors or patterns your Oriental rug contains is also important to take into consideration. Otherwise, your rug may last for a long period of time, but it will undoubtedly become stained by being a part of these high-traffic areas.

Professional rug cleaning is a great solution to keep your rug in great condition; yet, you should also avoid causing damage to your rug whenever possible. A way to avoid this is by not getting a rug with extensive use of creams and whites, but you should also contemplate whether or not dark colors will also work in your home or office – imagine how quickly a car with dark paint begins to show buildup of dust, moisture and other residues.

Really, the best idea when selecting a rug for its coloring and design is to go with something in between, either by choosing something solid with specks of color in it, or a camouflaging pattern that will hide spills, dirt and other stains between professional cleanings.

Come to our showroom or visit our rug shop to view extraordinary Oriental, Persian and Turkish carpets from around the world. Ahdoot offers every service available to rug collectors and enthusiasts, including cleaning, repair and appraisal on any carpet you purchase or already own. Visit us today!

The Evolution of Oriental Rugs

Like many artifacts without a written and verifiable record, the true origin of Oriental rugs remains a mystery. Today, debates among scholars still continue over what period of time handmade rugs entered into the picture.

Estimates, which have been based on findings of ancient remnants, place the art of rug weaving around 6,000 years old. However, this number has been toyed with significantly over the years, going as far back as 6000 BCE and even forward to the transition from BCE to the Common Era (CE), which is when the famous Pazyryk Carpet is said to have been made.

Why Rugs Were First Made

Two schools of thought exist on why Oriental rugs were first introduced. The first of these theorizes that rugs were invented solely for practical use by the largely nomadic population which existed in mankind’s early history. Serving as both protection from the elements and buffers between foot and floor within the home, handmade rugs also served to eliminate the slaughter of these nomads’ herds in order to utilize their hides for these purposes.

The second school of thought believes these carpets likely began as mere floor coverings, but quickly evolved into ornamental pieces, with little time in between. Initially serving a single then a dual purpose, the artistic value of these handmade rugs effectively moved them from being primarily functional to being decorative. Essentially, this is how rugs became associated with ceremonies and celebrations throughout the annals of time.

Where Rugs Originated

Similar to the considerations being made of the handmade rug’s timeline and purpose, where rugs originated is a source of heavy debate. This is largely due to the gradual, but widespread distribution of the weaving arts across what is today known as the Middle East, Europe and Asia.

Strong evidence, however, points to the Middle East as the rug’s originator, which likely began prolifically during the second or third centuries BCE. Nevertheless, no single modern country in this region can truly lay claim to being its inventor, giving the area itself a designation as the “cradle of carpet weaving”.

From ancient Turkestan and Caucasus to Persia and Anatolia was birthed the handwoven rug. And from these civilizations the practice spread to Europe in the west, China in the east, as well as India and other lands both near and far. Many of these locations, if not all, have come to be known collectively today as the “Rug Belt”.

Antique to Modern Day

Time periods are used more often than not to separate antique carpets from those considered modern-day. By most definitions, antique carpets are those produced before the 1920s, semi-antiques range from 1920 to roughly 1950, and contemporary rugs are those which are produced after the 1950s. However, there is another way of making these distinctions, and it has to do with how the carpets are being manufactured.

In this other method, carpets that have been made through traditional means, using natural dyes and produced by hand on a loom before synthetic dyes were introduced (1860-70), are antiques. Semi-antique rugs then are those made from 1860-70 through the first few decades of the 20th century, ending around 1920 to 1930. Thus modern carpets, which sometimes suffer from both synthetic dyes and materials, in addition to being manufactured on machines, are those coming after this early part of the 20th century to today.

Purchasing an Oriental, Persian or Turkish Rug

There are still a number of areas around the world that continue to produce handmade carpets using natural dyes, superior materials and adept craftsmanship. Many of these carpets can be found in our showroom and online Rug Shop, detailing a history through the hands of artists from countries across the globe.

Want to learn more about handmade rugs? Contact us today to speak with one of our specialists, who also specialize in rug cleaning, rug appraisal and rug repair.