It is not a simple task for normal folks not trained in identifying rugs to know the distinction between an authentic handmade Oriental rug and a machine-made rug. Handwoven and hand knotted rugs are also known as Oriental rugs and are mostly collectibles due to their quality. The quality of Oriental rugs hugely depends on the yarns’ quality, dyes used and knot count among other factors.
You will find rugs knotted by hand are made through a loom specially designed and knotted through the use of the hand. Hand knotted oriental rugs have been made for centuries through an ancient art that can only be admired. The loom’s size depends on the rug’s size with the weaving carried out moving from the bottom going up to the top. The weaver of the rug usually interweaves the “knots” into the rug’s groundwork, which are hand tied, something that makes the rug’s pile. It is a very time consuming and a tedious operation.
Changes in rug color
Wool pile and warp
Visual rug differences
While the machine-made rug has its edges machine overstitched and a fringe applied, the handmade Oriental rug’s fringe runs throughout the length of the rug which is called the warp. The machine-made rug has overstitch patterns running across its back and distinguishing individual knots appearing on the back are not easy to find. In fact, for the machine-made rug, the overstitch construction is generally what keeps the pile material held together. This means that the fringe is applied on a machine-made rug once it has been completed while the hand-woven Oriental rug has its fringe as a part of warp strings as they leave the handmade rug’s end.
You can turn towards the front part of the rug and peruse the designs intently. Essentially, the design should never be of the same shape and size from one opposite end to the other end of the potentially handmade Oriental rug. Also, the design patterns will not always be perfect either. This unevenness is something that is clear in most Oriental rugs that are much older and is a sign of authenticity and should not be mistaken for a poorly done rug. Machine-made rugs usually contain same pattern sizes all around and variations are not really visible. However, machine-made imitations do have uneven patterns but this is less common.
Countries of origin like Persia, India, China, Egypt, and Afghanistan, do offer handmade Oriental rugs at a fraction of the price at which they are offered in Canada and other parts of North America. So, it may be worth it to travel to those countries if you are interested in purchasing a quality handmade Oriental rug.
If you are having any trouble identifying an Oriental rug from a man-made one, you can always turn to a trustworthy expert for help. A professional rug cleaner like American Rug Laundry, will have extensive knowledge in this subject. We hope this article answered some of the questions you had about identifying authentic handmade Oriental rugs and helped you make better decisions with rug purchases.