When it comes to oriental rugs there is a lot of confusion by the average client on what is, or isn't, a oriental rug.
In this article we are going to briefly describe what a true oriental rug is and then go over the common types of oriental rugs you can purchase.
What Are Oriental Rugs? Not Everyone Understands What Truly Makes a Rug Oriental
A true oriental rug is a handwoven rug made out of 100% natural fibers such as cotton, wool, and silk. There are many "oriental rugs" that are not actually oriental in origin at all, but sold as oriental rugs. When purchasing a true oriental rug you need to make sure that you are actually buying a handwoven rug made in the orient! Otherwise it is just a knockoff of a true oriental rug or something the seller calls a oriental rug - but in reality it is not.
Is A Persian Rug A Oriental Rug? Yes!
A question that comes up at times is if a Persian rug is an oriental rug. And the answer is yes. A Persian rug is an oriental rug, but not all oriental rugs are Persian. How is that?
Well the term Persian Rug means a rug that is made exclusively in Iran. If a rug is not made in Iran, it is not a Persian rug. But Persian rugs are considered oriental rugs because Iran is part of the overall orient region. We hope that we are making this clear!
So, if you are told the rug is a Persian rug that means it has to have been made in Iran. Period. Yes, it is also a oriental rug. If you are told an oriental rug is also a Persian rug, that can be true. But, again, that rug had to be made in Iran. There is a lot of misinformation, some intentional some not, and it is very important to understand what you are looking at and buying.
Let's Take A Look At Common Types of Oriental Rugs
Persian Rugs - We might as well start here! LOL. Again, Persian rugs are made in Iran, ONLY Iran. They are considered to be the highest quality of oriental rug you can buy. It is not always easy to track exactly where the Persian rug was made because it could have been made in a far-out village somewhere in a province in Iran.
Persian rugs can have a number of different "patterns" on them usually consisting of flowers, combs, crosses, pomegranates, and things of this nature.
Most Persian rugs have colors that consist of red, blue, beige, brown, and gold. These are considered traditional colors in the area they are made.
As we said earlier, Persian rugs are considered to be of very high quality and can also be the most expensive. If you are going to purchase a Persian rug make sure you do your homework and ONLY work with a reputable company that specializes in this type of rug.
Bokhara Rugs - These rugs are similar to Persian rugs but these oriental rugs are made in what is now Uzbekistan in a town called Bukhara. Bukhara is a well known town for producing high quality oriental rugs.
The colors typically used in Bokhara rugs are red, navy, and brown. A signature of Bokhara rugs is that they are not as populated with designs as other rugs and the designs on them are many times in the shape of ovals.
Bokhara rugs originated in Bukhara but are also made around the world and called Bokhara. A true original Bokhara rug comes from Uzbekistan.
Chobi Zieglar - These rugs are also considered very high quality. They are typically more subtle or muted in color. This oriental rug got it's name from the word Chobi, which means wood in Persian and from a German company named Zieglar.
Even though Chobi Zieglar rugs are considered high quality they are more moderately priced than Persian rugs.
Ikat Rugs - This type of oriental rug gets its name after the design that you see on them. The ikat pattern, or design, is one of the oldest known designs you can find in an oriental rug.
Considered to be very tribal looking this type of oriental rug has very bright colors and has triangle and/or diamond shapes throughout. While this is also considered a high quality oriental rugs the prices of these rugs can be more moderate than Persion rugs.
Kilim Rugs - These unique rugs are a flat weave design oriental rugs and are known for very bold colors and the uniqueness of their weave.
Kilim flat weave rugs have a linear design and are not as smooth textured as other rugs. Actually they have a very rough texture and this is where they get their name from. Kilim is a Persion word basically meaning "spreading roughly."
Silk Rugs - Silk rugs are made out of silk, but not all of the rug is silk. Just portions of it. The more silk in the rug the higher in quality and price. Silk rugs are very soft in texture and have a bright sheen to them.
It is important to know that silk is pretty fragile and extreme care needs to be taken when cleaning them. Silk rugs usually have a mixture of silk and wool or silk and cotton to make them stronger and to allow them to hold up better.
Silk oriental rugs are beautiful but should ONLY be used in very light traffic areas.
So there you have the most common types of oriental rugs we encounter in our oriental/area rug cleaning business in Vancouver, Washington.
Oriental rugs are a beautiful addition to any home, but you need to understand what you are buying and the best use for them. Oriental rugs such as silk rugs should NEVER be used in high traffic areas, while other types of oriental rugs can receive much more traffic.
If you buying a true high-value oriental rug it is probably not a good idea to put that rug, no matter what type of oriental rug, in high traffic areas. These rugs can be very valuable and taking good care of them is a must.
And part of that good care is having them cleaned the right way. Oriental rug cleaning is much more technical than wall to wall residential cleaning of synthetic rugs.
If you are in need of expert, high quality oriental rug cleaning please give us a call at Linton's Carpet Cleaning in Vancouver, Washington.