If you wish to buy top quality traditional rugs, make sure you consult reliable dealers who are knowledgeable about the product they are selling. With the different types of designs, materials and quality available, you may be overwhelmed as you search for the perfect item that has the best value. Considering the numerous factors that affect the value of traditional rugs, you should seek expert advice in making a decision that you would not regret.
1. Learn about the basics in antique rugs.
Antique rugs are typical hand-woven on a loom, and a weaver ties all the wefts with knots made of various materials such as silk, wool, or cotton. Each of the knots is tied by hand, and it may take about six months before a weaver makes a rug that measures 9 x 12 feet. When buying a rug, you need to consider certain factors such as the condition, age, intricacy of the design, and type of dyes applied.
2. Determine the material used in the rugs.
The typical designs used in rugs are tribal symbols, pictorial themes and floral. Some rugs are made by applying traditional techniques by using vegetable dyes and tribal motifs instead of synthetic yarns. Rug yarns are usually spun from silk, cotton, or sheep’s wool. Other weavers apply a combination of several materials in making a rug. Inquire about the origin of the wool used, and keep in mind that the finest quality wool is imported from New Zealand and Tibet.
3. Check the type of dyes used.
Modern rugs are made by using chemical dyes, which are quite durable, uniform and colourfast. Antique rugs, on the other hand, have a softer appearance because weavers use vegetable dyes instead of synthetic ones. In addition, weavers use natural dyes that are prepared in small batches. They also incorporate variations in shading the different colours in the rug’s design. With this type of material used, you will notice an uneven tone that is common among all antique rugs.
4. Identify the number of knots for each square inch.
Typically, a high quality rug has the most number of knots per one square inch. You should consider turning the rug over and check the back portion where you can see the undersides of the knots. If you plan to buy a traditional rug with pictorial or floral design, make sure it has a high number of knots.
5. Inspect the overall appearance of the rug.
An antique rug seems lighter when you view it from the top end, yet it appears darker when you look at the rug from the bottom end. The knots are also pulled downward when the yarn is cut, so you will notice a downward slant in the pile.
Most importantly, make sure you buy a traditional rug from a reputable dealer. It makes sense not to buy from a clearance sale or auction because you might end up being ripped off because of the skyrocketing price. Lastly, make sure the rug does not have a soiled appearance. You should keep in mind that a high quality rug would show no signs of wear or poor value.