White Spots, Knot Heads, and Threadbare Rug Repair

knot heads visible on threadbare rug

What are the white spots on my rug?


As my rug has gotten older I have noticed white spots on it. I have not used any chemicals on my rug so I don’t know why there are tiny white spots on it.

Rug Expert:

Here at Behnam Rugs we often hear rug owners ask about white spots on their rugs. We make sure before we pick up their rug for washing that we evaluate each rug and inform the customer there might be more after a good professional washing.

Mr. Ben “Behnam” Tavakolian of Behnam Rugs says:

There are two kinds of white spots that show up on your hand made rugs.

  1. Knot Heads
  2. Threadbare Spots
  • What is a knot head?
  • Do all rugs have knot heads?
  • Where are knot heads found on a rug?

 Knot heads happen naturally during the weaving process of a rug. The weaver pulls on the warp to make a knot with the wool to create the pile of the rug. Tension is needed to make the warp thread and sometimes the fiber will break. The wool or cotton thread will then need to be extended and this is where the new piece creates the imperfection. Each broken warp will be secured with two knot heads. The size of the head will depend on the size of warp and cotton yarn and density of the rug.

Where are the knot heads found?

Knot heads are found in all handmade rugs. Generally the weaver will hide the knot heads between the pile of the rug by using a combing hammer to comb down the pile of the rug to keep knot heads from being exposed on the surface.

Seeing knot heads is natural as the rug gets older and the pile gets shorter. They will begin to come to the surface. Proper rug padding will keep this from happening prematurely. Sharp micro dust, sand, and dirt in an unwashed rug will cause the rug to lose more pile due to friction of the grime against the rug’s pile. Other factors that make imperfections show on the surface faster depends on the type of rug, country of origin, and traffic pattern, but all will age your rug faster if not maintained.

Knot heads could be carefully removed by re-weaving areas or in most cases just by coloring them to match the surrounding knot heads.

  1. White spots can occur in threadbare spots.

When a rug is used in the same traffic area/ pattern for many years and not cleaned, rotated, or dusted the pile will wear faster. We recommend rotating your rug so that it wears evenly every year or so. White spots also can be a result of where the rug came from- its origins, its weave, and type of wool foundation, or if it has a cotton foundation or wool foundation.

Simple maintenance of rotating your rug, keeping it dusted, and on a 4 to 5 year washing schedule will help extend the life of your rug and keep the imperfections from showing as fast. Using your rug over correct padding will prevent the need for re-weaving or color touch up due to warp showing and looking like white spots also.

Finally, the biggest culprit behind white spots, besides the aforementioned causes, is improper vacuuming! Never vacuum a handmade rug with the beater brush extension. This extension can tug on the rug, bringing exposed white spots to the surface due to pulling. Most cases we see are brought in by individuals who have not properly cared for their rug. We are not surprised to find out these rug owners vacuum their rug regularly and use the beater brush.

We hope this information answered all your questions about knot heads and white spots on your handmade rugs. If you have more questions feel free to call and bring in your rugs for evaluation and inspection. Call 972-733-0400 to set an appointment.

Water Damage on Your Rugs

Damaged rugHow to Clean a Water Damaged Rug

This blog is all about rescuing rugs affected by hail damage, roof damage, water leaks, flash flooding, broken skylights, and more. Behnam Rugs is here to help.

Before Behnam Rugs can pick up your rugs to clean and sanitize them, there are a few steps you can take to minimize any damage.

1. Carefully remove debris from your rugs. We cannot stress the emphasis on carefully enough! There could be tiny pieces of glass in your rug, and you won’t find out until you step on one. Wear protective shoes while removing debris. Remove what you can, but please do not hurt yourself trying to do more than that. Wearing gloves while removing debris can make the process a bit safer.
2. If your rug is wet or even partially wet, dry it by using a towel to absorb excess water. If you have access to a water extractor, you may consider using it. If you are not 100% sure on how to operate a water extractor, it’s best to not do anything with it at all, however.
3. Use a fan to dry your rugs if there is even a chance that your rug may be wet. Do not use a hair dryer or anything that uses heat to dry. This will harm your rug. Dehumidifiers can help as well.
4. If your rug is in an area that could receive run-off water, remove it from the area immediately. Run-off water could potentially contain chemicals that will damage your rug and permanently change its color.

Taking these steps will prevent color runs and bleeding, as well as damage to the rug’s fibers and dyes.

If your rug is already showing signs of color bleeding, worry not! Behnam rugs specializes in fixing color bleeding in rugs. Call us at 972-733-0400. We can also restore the pile of your rug and restore antique rugs if these are services you need, too. If your rug has been damaged, contact Behnam Rugs as soon as possible. The sooner you tackle a rug problem, the better the results will be, especially when you’re dealing with water damage. Remember, if you let your rug sit in water for more than 24 hours, there is a high chance of mold occurring. Mold can be dangerous to you as well as extremely harmful to your rug.

If you are not able to return to your rugs or if they have been damaged beyond repair (or totaled- your rug can be totaled just like a car!), contact us at 972-733-0400. and we will prepare an appraisal for insurance purposes. As long as you have some photographs of your rug and records of the sale or records of what kind of rug you had, we can make an appraisal for you. Talk to your insurance provider to see if the cost of your rug or rug restoration can be covered.

My Handmade Rug Does Not Fit My Room! What Do I Do?

What to Do When a Handmade Rug Does Not Fit

Here’s the situation- the rug you just fell in love with and purchased doesn’t fit your room. What can you do when this happens? Is it acceptable to alter the rug to better fit the room? Yes! It is perfectly acceptable to alter a rug (One way to avoid this problem is to work with a rug dealer that allows you to try the rug in your home for a day or two before purchasing. Luckily, Behnam Rugs is one of those dealers).

We do strongly suggest having a team of professionals, such as the team at Behnam Rugs, do this, though. You might be concerned that you are ruining the rug in some way by doing this, but at the end of the day, it is your rug and it needs to best fit your needs- not the needs of an antique buyer fifty years down the line. Many times size modifications, when done correctly, are not noticeable- most people will think the rug was bought at that size.

There are several options for modifying your rug. You can have your rug cut and bound, texturized, sheared, re-sized, fitted to use as an insert, or even cut into multiple rugs. If you’re not sure about the best option for your needs, let us know. We will be more than happy to work with you until we find a solution that you are happy with.

Behnam Rugs receives modification requests from all parts of the nation. One of these jobs was to cut and re-bind a handmade rug to custom fit a room for the tallest building in Oklahoma City, the Devon Tower.

A design group purchased a rug measuring 10 feet by 20 feet. The rug purchased by the group was an elegant, fine wool and silk blend rug from Tufenkian Rugs. There was a bit of an issue, though. Upon installation, the design group found that their perfect rug did not fit so perfectly, due to some large columns in the room.

Although you may know Behnam Rugs as a fine rug sales showroom, we also work on cleaning and repairing fine rugs. Tufenkian Rugs referred the design firm to our service team in Dallas, Texas. The rug needed some extensive modifications.

The designers needed the rug to fit their office perfectly. The rug had to go around a large column. The rug also had to be split into two separate rugs, which would each be placed on opposite sides of a glass wall. The firm also needed openings underneath their conference table. These openings would allow for electrical outlet use. The final step was to rebind the new sides by hand, using all natural, color-matched wool yarn. Our yarn collection contains hundreds of colors to ensure the perfect match.

Altering and resizing rugs, especially Tibetan hand spun, hand knotted rugs is only one specialty of ours. We have performed similar projects for many different types of rugs- everything from antiques to contemporary rugs, like the Tufenkian collection rug. Whether or not you have an interior designer, we can modify, recreate, design, resize, repair, and restore any of your rugs, too.

All projects are performed in our grand showroom, which also houses a large cleaning and repair facility in Dallas. All rug servicing work is done by hand and completed by our skilled technicians and master weavers. This includes the cutting and rebinding project for the Tufenkian rug, mentioned above.

If you have a project that requires our expertise, give us a call at 972-733-0400. There is no reason you can’t enjoy your rug at a size that suits you!

Want to see how the rug downsizing process works? Watch the video below!

Oushak Rugs: Design Influences, History, and Rug Care

Oushak rugOushak Rugs: Design Influences, History, and Rug Care

Oushak, or Ushak, rugs are beautiful works of art that originated in the small town of Oushak, Turkey near the beginning of the Ottoman Empire. These rugs are most often purchased as antiques or antique reproductions.

Nomadic rugs, Oushak rugs feature a blend of Persian and geometric stylistic influences. These rugs typically are made of wool and have a characteristically loose weave that is the result of coarser knotting.

These rugs feature stunning colors such as apple green, teal, gold, pumpkin, peach, and orange. They are known for their distinct color palette- Oushak rugs are famous for bright colors and primitive, simple geometric designs.

Often, these rugs display a central medallion or smaller medallions all over the body of the rug. They might even have vines or stars scrolling along the face. Nowadays, Oushak rugs are highly sought after and excellent for modern and traditional interior design schemes.

The history of Oushak rugs begins in the 15th century in Anatolia or Turkey. During the Ottoman Empire, the city of Oushak became a major rug manufacturing center. The design of the rug reflects the values of the period in which it was woven.

The rugs that were created from the 15th to 18th century in this style are now highly desired by collectors and museums. The other rugs of that time period were typically woven in dark blues and reds, which is what really makes Oushak rugs stand out- the use of unconventional colors is part of their charm and elegance. Oushak carpets are the most prominent design from Turkey and were quite popular until the end of the 18th century.

The rugs that continued to be made after this period were typically manufactured for the upper class in Eastern Europe, as most consumers were more interested in rugs of European origin. Then, in the late 19th century, the European market became interested in Persian rugs and they were sought after again.

It was harder to find weavers of Oushak rugs when they became popular again in the 19th century due to the limited number of weavers familiar with the style. The Oushak economy had become a niche market because the style of weaving had not been passed down as it was no longer a viable way to make a living.

Luckily, when the designs became sought after once more, the market began to expand again, which is why you can still purchase Oushak rugs today. Nowadays, reproduction Oushak rugs are made in Turkey, India, and Pakistan. This rejuvenation of the Oushak economy resulted in a change in design- the rugs began to feature floral patterns.

Due to the fact that most Oushak rugs are woven very loosely with a low knot count, they do not possess the longevity of Persian rugs. Older Oushak rugs need special, constant care and repair maintenance. This should be done by professionals in the rug repair industry. Never vacuum an Oushak rug with the beater brush extension.

If you are interested in purchasing an Oushak rug, call 972-733-0400.

Rug Cleaning: Preventing Wear and Tear on Your Persian and Oriental Rugs

Sweeping a rugRug Cleaning: Preventing Wear and Tear on Your Persian and Oriental Rugs

It’s important to maintain the cleanliness of your rug. This extends the life of it and makes it less likely that you’ll encounter problems dangerous to the livelihood of your rug such as moths.

How to Vacuum & Sweep

Know your rug and know your vacuum cleaner to see if they’re a good match

Depending on the material of your rug, you may need to be careful when vacuuming. If you have a silk rug, do not use the vacuum brush head. You may only use the brush-less suction extension on silk rugs or else you will damage the fabric. When in doubt, don’t use the beater brush, or call the professionals at Behnam Rugs at 972-733-0400. Improper vacuuming can cause unsightly sprouting, which is when the white yarn heads become visible due to pulling. 

Sweeping is another option for silk rugs, antique rugs, and rugs made with hand-spun yarn. Gently sweep to avoid damage to the fibers. Shaking the rug outside also removes dust and debris.

How to Rotate

Rugs generally need to be rotated once a year. If a rug is in a high traffic area, you may want to do this every six months. In addition, heavy sunlight, moisture, or pressure from furniture means you’ll want to rotate every six months as well. Remember, if you choose not to rotate your rug, it will experience uneven wear that becomes more noticeable the longer you go without rotating.

How to Choose Rug Padding

Make sure your rug has the proper padding to minimize wear. Rugs with heavy furniture sitting on them may need coasters. Ask us what kind to use. A rug over carpeting requires special padding. Padding increases the longevity of the rug and reduces the risk of falls.

How to Spot Clean

If your pet marks your rug, or you spill wine or food on your rug, take action immediately. To protect the integrity of your piece, never use carpet cleaners on a fine, handmade rug. These cleaners contain harsh chemicals that spell disaster for luxurious natural fibers.

If you don’t notice the spill or are not able to immediately clean a spot from your rug, you may need an expert to clean it- make sure you choose the proper rug washing specialist. Behnam Rugs’ professionals remove almost 95% of spots and stains, regardless of the age of the imperfection. This leads us to the next maintenance option.

How to Choose a Professional Cleaner

Rugs need to be cleaned professionally every three to five years. Don’t neglect your rug! Regular cleaning is vital to its health and longevity. If you have pets, your rug may be full of dander and other particles that cause odors you may be nose-blind to.

Call Behnam Rugs today at 972-733-0400 or request a free quote for rug cleaning. We specialize in odor removal and stain removal as well. Our traditional Persian hand washing methods are safe for silks and even antiques. Never take a fine handmade rug to a carpet cleaner. You should always work with a company whose specialty is rugs, not carpet.

How to Choose a Repairing Service

Say your rug is old and worn, has some sort of damage, or has been attacked by destructive cloth moths. Don’t fret, in most cases, your rug can be repaired. Call a reputable rug repair company, like Behnam Rugs, and ask for a free quote. Repairing your treasured rug is the best way to restore it to its former beauty.

Behnam Rugs offers a host of repair options including patching, reweaving, binding restoration, fringe restoration and more. All rug restorations must be executed by an expert professional due to the complexity of these repairs. Reweaving and restoration are very costly so the sooner you get it fixed, the more money you save. Call us at 972-733-0400.