In this modern age of technology and machine-made convenience, it is interesting to know that there are still some age-old techniques that add value and beauty to your home. We’re talking about hand-knotted rugs.
Features Of Hand-Knotted Rugs
Hand-knotted rugs are made entirely by hand. Skilled weavers work at for hours on end patiently creating one knot at a time. The result is a magnificent hand-knotted rug and because they are created by individual weavers, no two of these rugs are alike. Weavers take their inspiration for their designs from what they see around them. Trees, birds, animals, and flowers, all find their way into the designs of hand-knotted rugs.
The best hand-knotted rugs tend to have a high knot count per square inch and are made from natural materials such as silk, wool and cotton. Plant-based dyes are used to create colors that may not be readily available within the natural fiber itself.
All these materials are produced right where the rug-maker resides, and many of the details such as the pattern, the kinds of knots used, and even the colors used are passed down from generation to generation.
Abrash – A Unique Feature Of Hand-Knotted Rugs
The plant and vegetable dyes used in wool create what is known as abrash, in which different shades within the wool itself affect the saturation level and color of the dye. If you look at a hand-made all-wool rug up close, you will see that much of the colors are never one solid, universal color. Instead, they are an amalgamation of different tones, depths, and saturation levels. This is the magic of abrash.
Warp And Weft
Hand-weaving for a rug is done on a loom with warp and weft threads. These threads form a grid that supports the rug both on top as well as underneath where it really counts. The tighter the warp and weft threads, the more intricate the design may be produced. The fringe on hand-knotted rugs is made by the warp threads.
The best way to see if a rug is hand-made is to flip it over to the wrong side. If you still see a pattern similar to the top, then you’ve found a hand-made rug! A hand-made rug will not feel rough or like it has plastic on the back. Hand-made rugs do not contain any kind of binding or backing on them.
The Feel Of A Hand-Knotted Rug
Hand-knotted rugs are constructed so that the knots are on the “wrong” side, and the rug fabric is trimmed down on the right side so that all the fibers are of uniform length. When you run a hand across a hand-knotted rug, it should feel warm and soft. If the rug is made of wool, silk, or a wool-silk blend, there may also be some springiness to the fibers.
A silk rug hand-knotted rug may have a slight sheen to it when the light hits it. This is a natural occurrence with any silk fiber. The rug will also warm up slightly when it is rubbed.
Wool fibers will be quite warm to the touch as well but it won’t feel as smooth as silk. Wool is also water-resistant (water will bead up rather than soak through) and a wool rug lasts longer than many synthetics.
A hand-knotted Oriental rug is a classic treasure that may last for generations. When you’re looking for a rug that’s unique, valuable, and is sure to stay looking good down the years, nothing comes close to a hand-knotted rug.