Tips for Buying an Oriental Carpet – Part 3: How to Choose an Oriental Rug
Now that you have some basic knowledge under your belt, let’s start putting the pieces together. Before you begin your search, take some time to decide what size and color you are looking for. Ideally, as conventional wisdom says, decorating a room should start with the Oriental rug because of the multitude of paint and fabric choices as opposed to the finite color and style of a chosen antique oriental rug. Now, that’s great if you’re starting from square one, but like most people, you are likely choosing a rug for an existing space that has a defined color and style.
To best prepare for choosing a rug for an existing space, bring samples with you and a photo of the room. Draw a rough sketch of your space and note any sort of furniture that is to be placed on top of it; after all, you don’t want chairs around a table falling off the edges of the rug.
Now, you’re armed with the basic info in looking for a rug but, what aspects do you look for to determine quality and cost? They are listed below:
The weave – The rug should be finely woven enough to convey the original design, but doesn’t have to be the most finely woven; a lot of people think that the finer the weave, the better the rug.
Quality – This determines the resilience of the rug. The type of wool used should be soft and not “dry,” “coarse,” or “stale.” The quality of dyes is also important as well. There should be no heavy color run, sun fade or oxidation.
Country of Origin – Traditionally, Persia was the source of the highest quality rugs. High quality oriental rugs still come from there but rugs from Turkey, India, Pakistan, China and Tibet has improved in the past 20 or so years.
Age – An oriental rug that is 100 or more years old is considered an antique and thus worth more money. That is, if it’s still in good condition.
Condition – An older oriental rug is likely to have been repaired too…but don’t necessarily think of it as a bad thing. Some collectors actually go out of their way to find these as they have a more “genuine” air about them. However, adverse conditions such as stains and wear do decrease the value.
Design Demand – As we all know with fashion, trends come and go. And, the same thing is true with the oriental rug industry. What was once fashionable in the 1960’s, is not as fashionable today and thus will cost less. It is then advantageous for you if you’re in the market for a unique or off-beat style.
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