5 Things to Remember when Buying a Rug

5 Things to Remember when Buying a Rug

Buying a rug is not as easy as many people think. The rug featured in any room will dictate the atmosphere and ambiance, perhaps adding playfulness, joy, and brightness to the environment. The rug will also decide the use and formality of the room. With the trends for color and design constantly changing, many colors come and go every three to five years or a little longer. However, traditional designs and colors are always in style, even in contemporary homes. Traditional and antique rugs make great statements, no matter your home’s design.

Here are some simple things to keep in mind when shopping for the perfect rug.

1. Size

Do not estimate when it comes to measurements. Get a measuring tape and measure the area where you will place the rug. Rugs are usually made in certain common sizes. Measure the minimum width you need as well as the maximum width you need, and do the same with the length. This will give you some breathing room when it comes to picking the size, as the rugs may not come in the exact measurements you take. Make sure the placement of the rug will make sense. For example, do not buy a rug in a size that will not cover the room evenly so that you end up with the rug only partially covering walkways. Why? You do not want to wear the rug unevenly because you walk half on and half off the rug when traversing the room.

2. Design

New rugs follow the design trends of the moment, using stylish patterns and colors. Traditional Persian designs are always in style and continue to be woven new as well. Traditional Persian rugs typically feature a central medallion or all over pattern. Visit a large rug store to see what you like, whether that’s modern, semi-traditional, traditional, or transitional rugs.

3.Color

Nowadays, rugs are made in many different color combinations. If you want to keep it simple, less color is easier to work with. Try choosing a rug in a primary color that features a secondary color as well as an additional four to five colors. Color choices are totally a personal preference, and you may choose trendy shades, traditional colors, or a mix according to your taste.

4. Budget

Set a budget for each rug. Be generous- not every design and color you love will necessarily come in the right size and the price range can limit the quality. For an 8 x 10 machine-made rug, an appropriate budget is $800 to $1,500 dollars depending on the rug’s construction and fibers. For handmade rugs, you will need a budget of $2K to $8K.

5. Buy with Confidence

Learn about the rug you will be buying. Is it made of wool, silk, cotton, viscose, nylon, or something else?The material affects the care of the rug as well as its looks and longevity. Learn how to spot clean and make sure you are prepared to take the rug for professional cleaning every three to five years. Buy your rug from a retailer with an outstanding reputation in case you want to return or exchange the rug. In addition, a reputable dealer will educate you about fine rugs and help you decide using years of experience. Be careful buying a rug online, as the color and texture are unlikely to be accurately represented and some sellers may even try to scam you.

Simple Handbook for the First-Time Persian Rug Buyer

Antique Persian RugSimple Handbook for the First-Time Persian Rug Buyer

To those who have never done it before, buying a Persian rug may seem like a daunting task. How will you pick between the hundreds of combinations of style, color, material, and other choices? Lucky for you, this guide will give you some insight into the process and simplify it for you.

Designs

Persian rugs come in many designs or styles. We’re going to cover some of the most common and popular designs that you are likely to encounter while shopping.

Gabbeh– These rugs are coarsely woven, resulting in lower knot density. They feature simple, primitive patterns and dense piles as deep as one inch.

Tabriz– These fine rugs have a high knot count and complex designs that include flowers, medallions, and pictorial scenes. Tabriz rugs feature a wide range of patterns which means you have a lot of choice when selecting a Tabriz. They are mostly made of wool with a silk pile.

Kashan– These rugs usually feature a diamond shaped medallion in the “Book Cover” design. They are colored with rich reds, blues, ivory, yellow, and burnt orange.

Kilim– These flat tapestry-woven rugs do not have a pile, resulting in a flatter, reversible rug in a tribal pattern.

Qum– Less rich than Kashan, Qum rugs typically feature bright reds, blues, and ivories and are quite creative in terms of design, featuring central medallions and a smaller size. They are likely to increase in value according to Wikipedia.

In addition, there are three main styles of rug- traditional, transitional, and modern. If you are searching for a Persian rug, you are very likely to end up with a traditionally patterned rug. If you end up falling in love with a rug that is not from Persia, it may be because you actually like the transitional or modern style.

Colors

Pehaps you wish to choose a rug with colors that have meaning to you. In fact, every color in a rug has inherent meaning that we will explain here. Choosing a rug based on the message that the colors convey is another way to select a rug.

Red– power, energy, passion, love, luck,

Orange– enthusiasm, creativity, determination, success

Yellow– happiness, positivity, clarity, enlightenment, loyalty

Green– life, renewal, growth, fertility

Blue– trust, wisdom, confidence, tranquility

Purple– royalty, luxury, ambition, creativity, peace

Pink– friendship, compassion, nurturing, love

Black– elegance, rebellion, power, strength

Brown– security, grounding, warmth, honesty

Ivory– purity, innocence, opulence, virtue

Material

There are two materials that a Persian rug will be made from- wool and silk. The materials affect the durability, cost, and ease of maintenance.

Wool

Persian rugs are most often made of wool. These rugs are the hardiest and the easiest to clean. They are soft and strong. They also last longer than silk when cared for properly due to the strength of the fibers.

Silk

Silk imparts a beautiful sheen to the rug. These rugs are elegant and plush, but sadly more expensive and rare. Silk rugs also show their designs more clearly due to the nature of the material and knotting. Silk rugs are harder to clean and more delicate than wool.

Wool and Silk

Some Persian rugs feature both wool and silk. The wool creates a sturdy foundation while the silk creates the pile.

Shape and Size

Another factor that will affect the buying process is the shape and size of the rug. Consider the room it will be placed in. Large rectangular or square rugs are perfect for living rooms, dining rooms, and bedrooms.

Smaller rectangular rugs can be shown off in kitchens and bathrooms, as well as under coffee tables.

Runners go in hallways and entryways and are long and narrow. They can also be placed in bathrooms of sufficient length.

Round rugs draw attention to chic dining rooms and also look good under tables as a centerpiece.

We hope you have found this short handbook illuminating and that you feel better prepared to shop for the Persian rug of your dreams.

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.

Questions a Quality Rug Dealer Can Answer

Hanging rugQuestions a Quality Rug Dealer Can Answer

When you’re shopping for a fine, handmade rug, you don’t want to go in blind. A good rug dealer will educate you on the fine rugs they sell, imparting valuable knowledge that will help you make an informed decision. So, what are the questions you should ask a fine rug dealer?

1. Where is the rug from?

The dealer should be able to tell you the country of origin, and in some cases, the exact city that it’s from. The country and city of origin gives you an idea about the quality. Certain areas are known for producing high quality rugs, will other areas are known for producing lower quality rugs. In addition, the place of origin influences the pattern or design of the rug. You may learn you love rugs from India and hate rugs from China, for example. This will make shopping easier for both you and the dealer, as you can tell them the areas whose rugs you prefer.

2. What is the rug woven from?

Handmade rugs generally come in one of three materials or a mix of two. These materials are wool, silk, and cotton. It is quite common for Persian rugs to be wool or wool and silk. Wool and silk rugs are made with a wool foundation and silk pile.

3. Is the rug hand knotted or machine made?

A good dealer can know by a casual glance if a rug is handmade or machine made. They can even tell you a few tips for spotting the difference yourself! For instance, a higher knot count is often an indication of higher quality, and sometimes tells you the rug is handmade. Look for imperfections in the knots on the back of the rug, as a machine made rug is far less likely to have any mistakes. These mistakes do not affect the design and are not visible from the front but they tell you that a person made the rug by hand, which is a good thing! The fringes of the rug are a good place to examine in order to tell if a rug is machine or handmade.

4. How old is the rug?

A rug dealer who knows his stuff can ascertain the general age by looking at the rug. In addition, he or she should know the approximate age of the rug according to its certificate or tag. Certain designs and quality rugs are woven in specific time periods. In general, the older the rug, the higher the value.

5. Is the rug traditional, transitional, or modern?

For those new to the rug game, it can be hard to tell which patterns are which. With a knowledgeable rug dealer by your side you will quickly learn the difference between the major styles of rug. Traditional rugs are more intricate, often feature medallions, and include specific designs that can be floral, animal, or some other complex pattern. They often feature ten colors or more. Transitional rugs fall somewhere in between traditional and modern. They aren’t as simple as modern rugs, and are not as complex as traditional rugs. They are almost a mix of the two. Lastly, modern rugs are generally simpler in terms of design and color. They are more likely to come in neutrals like gray, beige, tan, and black. A modern rug might feature just three or four colors. They typically have simple designs and patterns that would not be considered “busy.”

6. How much is my rug worth?

If you’re not looking to buy a rug, you may still have questions a rug dealer can answer. The most common one is, “What is my rug worth?” A reputable dealer will likely give verbal and written appraisals. They take all the questions we covered into account to assess your rug. The country of origin, material, whether it is machine made or handmade, whether it is traditional, transitional, or modern, and the age of the rug all affect its worth. Quality rug dealers are able to discern the approximate value of your rug and give appraisals for insurance or sale purposes. The condition of the rug and how well it has been maintained in the past, including washing and restoration, is a big factor in determining how much your rug is worth.

If the person selling you a rug can’t answer these questions, run!

Rug Cleaning Advice from a Specialist

Man standing in front of rugs

Rug Cleaning Advice from a Specialist

This blog will give you the tools you need to effectively care for your rug at home.

Things you SHOULD be doing

  • Sweeping your rug
  • Gently vacuuming
  • Rotating your rug
  • Padding your rug
  • Addressing spills and stains immediately
  • Checking your rug for moths
  • Inspecting your rug every year for damage
  • Getting your rug professionally cleaned every 3 to 5 years

Things you SHOULDN’T be doing

  • Vacuuming your rug with the beater brush
  • Vacuuming the fringes of your rug
  • Letting stains set into your rug
  • Using your rug with no padding
  • Storing your rug in dark, quiet places without checking on it periodically for moths
  • Leaving your rug in the same place for years
  • Allowing direct sunlight to hit your rug all day for extended periods of time
  • Using carpet cleaning solutions on your rug
  • Allowing carpet cleaners or inexperienced individuals to  clean your rug

In-depth breakdown of the SHOULDs:

Sweeping your rug improves its health by loosening dust and debris from the pile and top of your rug. Sweep in the direction of the pile. You can ascertain this by running your hand over the rug: sweep in the direction of the grain.

If you have a handmade rug, it’s okay to vacuum it every week or so, but only if you don’t use the beater brush.

Rotate your rug every six months to a year to allow for even wear and a smaller likelihood of threadbare patches.

If you spill something on your fine, handmade rug, address it immediately. Use a towel to blot up excess liquid and a bit of water to dilute the stain. Call the experts at Behnam Rugs and ask us the best way to remove your specific stain at 972-733-0400.

Make sure to check your rug for moths, eggs, and larva every six months or so by lifting the edges of the rug and checking underneath. Make sure to check areas that lay underneath furniture as well.

Next, you need to inspect your rug every year or so. If you spot any damage, it’s better to repair your rug sooner rather than later, as damage tends to get worse with time.

Finally, your rug MUST be professionally cleaned at least every five years. Why? Because professional cleaning removes debris and dirt that your vacuum simply cannot reach. If left untended, these particulates effectively cut through the pile of your rug due to their sharp edges, resulting in thinning and patchy spots. In addition, professional cleaning removes allergens, and odors that you may be nose-blind to, as well as tough, unsightly stains. If you love your rug, it deserves regular professional cleaning to extend its longevity.

For more information on how to clean your rug at home, please read our article published in the Dallas Morning News.

In-depth breakdown of the SHOULDN’Ts

Never, ever, ever vacuum a handmade rug with the beater brush. This attachment is too rough on the natural fibers and can cause unraveling and sprouting. Sprouting causes white knot heads to be visible on the face of your rug due to pulling. When vacuuming, leave the fringes alone. Gently sweep them to get rid of dirt instead of vacuuming.

Next, always address spills and stains immediately. Not doing so allows it to set, making it hard to remove yourself. Professionals can usually remove tough stains, but ideally if you get to the stain quickly you can get rid of it yourself.

The next mistake is not using rug padding. Padding is an inexpensive way to extend the life of your rug. Not to mention an unpadded rug is a safety hazard. Without padding your rug will experience more pressure than it should, especially underneath furniture. This can lead to permanent indentations in the shape of said furniture.

Next, you don’t want to leave your rug in a dark, quiet place for months or years without checking it for moths. Moths love spaces like these and their larva can do a lot of damage in a short amount of time in the right conditions. That’s why it’s so important to check the front and back of the rug for moths, eggs, and larva.

It is also important to rotate your rug so that the rug experiences wear evenly. This will prevent the rug from wearing out as fast.

If you have a fine rug, you probably want to display it in a room with good lighting. However, you should be careful about the amount of direct sunlight your rug receives. Ideally, you should place your rug in a room with curtains or blinds so that when you are not showing your rug off it’s not experiencing bright natural light. Sunlight can fade your rug after extended periods of time.

Next, NEVER use carpet cleaners on a wool, silk, or cotton rug that is handmade.

And lastly, do not trust your handmade rug to individuals who do not specialize in rug washing, such as carpet cleaners or inexperienced individuals. Only entrust your rug to the care of those with decades of experience washing fine rugs BY HAND.