Rug Shopping for Oriental Rugs

Rug Shopping for Oriental Rugs

Rug Design is Timeless

You can see by looking at collections over the years, rugs have been a huge influence in art and décor. In fact, if you look at some of the greatest designs in history, they are still being used every day today. Look at Henry VIII, for example, who owned hundreds of Turkish rugs that can be seen in his many portraits. These rugs allow us to see how art has evolved and times have changed, although a lot of the components and ideas are still present in today’s décor. That is why, when choosing a new oriental rug or carpet for your home, don’t just consider the patterns that are trendy or popular. Trends come and go. The best designs will stand the test of time. This rug shopping guide will be your reference to choosing the best piece.

Consider the Design First When Rug Shopping

Choosing a rug for your home or office is also more than picking your favorite color or a pattern you like most. You want to consider an item that complements your existing décor, of course. But, you also want to find a design that has a harmonious pattern. Is it balanced? Does the design feel well-spaced without? A rug has to be able to stand alone with a beautiful pattern to be a welcome addition to your space.

Opt for Naturally-Dyed Carpets for Brilliant Color

Oftentimes, antique carpets and rugs are composed of hand-spun, naturally-dyed yarn. In fact, rugmakers in Asia and the Middle East started using natural dyes thousands of years ago. The richness of these colors can not be reproduced with synthetic dye. Synthetic dye dates back to 1860. People that want the quality of originals often don’t consider purchasing rugs that were made after this date, as synthetic hues will fade over time. 

Plus, these naturally-dyed yarns contain colors that aren’t usually present in today’s rugs. These colors include shades of green, saffron yellow, cochineal rose, and Tyrian purple. However, by 1940, synthetic hues were revisited, and more quality colors were produced. This enormous range of colors is resistant to fading. 

Natural Dyes by Nazmiyal
Natural dyes provided a more vibrant color for rugs.

Be Mindful of the Knots, Wefts, and Warps

A warp refers to the backbone of an Oriental rug. It consists of strands of yarn, silk, wool, or cotton that are stretched vertically on the loom, before the weaving of the rug begins. When the rug is complete, the warp will be cut from the loom, leaving a fringe on the rug or carpet. 

Rug Warps by Nazmiyal

The weft also composes the backbone of a rug. It is threaded horizontally into the warp. It goes over and under each successive vertical warp. Typically, the strength of the warp is higher because it has to be stretched more doing the production of a rug. 

Rug Wefts

Knots refer to the bumps in a rug that are repeatedly placed in rows between the wefts. They are clipped to produce the final product. Lots of rugs are described in terms of knots per square inch. Higher numbers represent finer rugs with a more intricate pattern. 

What Type of Rug Do You Want?

There are also different types of rugs to consider when looking at Oriental rugs are carpets. 

  • Flatweave: Refers to a thinly woven rug with no pile. These rugs are usually reversible and benefit from a rug pad underneath them.
  • Hand Hooked: These rugs are made by pulling small loops through a canvas and securing them with a protective backing.
  • Hand Knotted: A warp thread and weft thread are used to create these rugs on a large loom. Rows of knots are tied along the warp and weft to create the knotted look.
  • Hand Tufted: Created by loading individual threads in a tufting gun and pushing the threads through a canvas. A fabric backing is applied to preserve the design.
  • Machine Made: These rugs are made using an electronically-controlled loom.
  • Shag: Refers to a rug that has a thicker or fluffier pile.
Flat Weave Rugs by Nazmiyal
An example of flat weave rugs.

Consider the Rug’s Origin when Rug Shopping

Rugs are usually classified by their origin. Their origin can affect their design, their intricacy, and their materials. It also greatly affects how they are made. Is it a rug that was carefully hand-woven in a smaller village or tribe? Was it mass-produced in the factory of a large city? They each have their own perks.

  • Royal: A royal carpet’s origin dates back to the 16th century. These rugs were made for Islamic courts.
  • Town: These carpets were woven in workshops of different towns, as far back as the 19th century.
  • Tribal: A tribal carpet refers to a rug woven by nomadic tribal weavers and their design typically reflects the tribe’s culture and ideals. Examples include the Belouch, the Kurds, the Qashqai, and the Turkmen.
  • Village: These carpets were produced in the home throughout different villages and settings. They are each unique, as their designs was completed by memory.

Take Meticulous Care of Your Purchase after Rug Shopping

Once you’ve decided on a rug that you can’t live without, you need to make sure to carefully care for it to preserve it for years to come. After all, some antique rugs can become priceless heirlooms. If nothing else, they are a notable piece of history. If they do end up requiring restoration, it can severely hinder the value of the rug. Any fading, staining, or chemical washing will affect the rug’s present value. However, the older and rarer a rug is, the more forgiving collectors will be. After all, the rug is still a rare artifact that some collectors simply have to have. 

Keep in mind, rugs composed of silk are much more fragile than other textiles and can become worn more easily. You must use careful care when drying a silk rug, if it becomes wet or requires cleaning. If done incorrectly, they can split. Most antique rugs, however, are made to last for years. In fact, they are more durable than commercially-made rugs today. 

Store and Protect it Carefully

You should plan to clean and maintain your rug regularly. When vacuuming, be sure to use a light setting to avoid pulling the fibers. If it does require a more thorough cleaning, such as for a spill or stain, be sure to consult a professional carpet cleaner. 

Your rug can accrue serious damage if they aren’t stored properly too. They can be affected by water or insects. Or, mold or mildew can begin to grow. Make sure when you do store your rug, that you roll it, starting from the bottom, with the pile on the inside. If it is a silk rug, the pile should be on the outside. Make sure not to try to fold it, as it could begin to crack. 

Purchasing an Oriental rug or carpet is a major decision. However, it’s one that you won’t regret. Just be sure to put careful thought into your purchase; it’s time that won’t be wasted. What design looks most harmonious in your home? What colors do you want to integrate into your decor? Once you make the purchase, plan to clean and protect it. This is also time well-spent. Happy shopping! 

This auction blog about rug shopping was published by Nazmiyal Auctions.
Five Reasons to Choose a Vintage Carpet

Five Reasons to Choose a Vintage Carpet

Vintage Carpets are the Best

Whether you’ve bought a new home that you’re trying to refurnish or are simply ready to make some changes in your house, decorating is an exciting and fulfilling experience. When it comes to adding a rug to your home, we believe that vintage carpets are far superior to any others on the market. Keep reading to discover the top five reasons that a vintage carpet will make the best addition to your home!

1. Ability to Display Greater Color Patterns

Typically, modern carpets offer little in the way of style or variety, with most color schemes looking almost identical. When it comes to hand-woven antique carpets, things are certainly unique. Antique carpets were often designed in countries throughout the Middle East where colors are appreciated and embraced. The wool that was used in these carpets was naturally dyed with a wide variety of different berries and plants, presenting color patterns that are stunning and one-of-a-kind in contrast to the typical dyes processed in factories.

Vintage Carpets Add Color by Nazmiyal

2. Inviting Texture that Withstands Daily Life

When you purchase a modern carpet, you can expect that it will be made from wool or other materials that will soon shed and start to show signs of wear. In contrast, a vintage carpet is made from high-quality wool that will withstand harsh daily life and provides an inviting softness. When you walk across a carpet in your bare feet, you will certainly be able to tell a difference between vintage and modern rugs. Vintage carpets are not only soft but also provide more warmth, making them an excellent choice for chilly mornings or areas with cold winter weather. 

3. A Lush History

Whereas modern rugs generally have no more of a story than being processed in a factory, a vintage carpet comes with its own history. Since these rugs were typically passed down throughout the years, it is interesting to discover who owned the rugs in the past and then investigate the lifestyle of those people. Some vintage rugs showcase certain symbols such as dragons, flowers, and bats to provide owners with a story right on their living room floor. These rugs can easily provide more lush history than a book could ever hope to introduce.

Persian Rug by Nazmiyal

4. Large-Size Rugs Available to Accommodate All Homes

It can be difficult to find rugs and carpets big enough to fill a larger sized room, and most modern carpets would need to be specially made to fit. Vintage rugs may actually make better financial sense since they already come in larger sizes. You can purchase a vintage carpet that will fill your grand room with history and a sense of unique style.

5. Hand Selected for Your Room

Purchasing the rug that will be right for your home can be a challenge; however, vintage rugs provide the perfect solution. Rug specialists can help you by hand picking a rug that will fit directly into your area and meet your specific decorating goals. When you purchase from a vintage carpet distributor, they will match you with a rug that is well-preserved, the right size for your area, the right texture for the room, and the perfect design for your decorating sense.

Vintage Carpet in Dining Room by Nazmiyal

Don’t Settle

When you’re decorating your home, you don’t have to settle for modern rugs and carpets that do little to provide character or charm; instead, you can opt for vintage rugs. Vintage carpets are many years old, however, they show little wear or tear due to their durable fabric and the care that was put into their creation. When you purchase a vintage carpet, you are allowing your home to be the center piece for a carpet that was made with care and designed with a purpose. 

This auction blog about vintage carpets was posted by Nazmiyal Auctions.

Rug Arrangement: A Creative Process

Rug Arrangement: A Creative Process

Ten Creative Ways to Arrange Rugs

The most beautiful interiors have something in common: thoughtful rug arrangement. Rugs are quintessential in design. They can be layered, used to designate one space from the next, and most importantly give appropriate ambiance to each room. Traditionally admired in living rooms, fabulous home rugs are best arranged throughout the home for maximum style and functionality. 

1. Step Outside the Ordinary

Homeowners are used to selecting and arranging rugs based on functionality. A rug gives warmth and definition to a space, but they are also intended for layering and bringing in a pop of color to neutral spaces. Every home needs balance so that when the occupant enters a room, the eye is drawn to an intended focal point. Rugs are magical. 

Rug Placement by Nazmiyal

2. Re-purpose Each Season

Furniture becomes boring after a room has settled in for months-on-end of daily use and leisure. Each season, re-arrange rugs and purchase a new one that coordinates or contrasts existing design to layer around. Rugs can be used as a chair or sofa decoration and create interest in the room. 

3. Rugs are High-Quality Fabric

Be it known that rugs are magical for DIY upholstery. Since rugs can be purchased at every budget and in a multitude of colors and patterns, they make a fantastic center of attention. Get creative and up-cycle an old ottoman or chair that’s been hanging around.

4. Elements Every Room Needs

The law of interior design goes something like this: consider texture, pattern, color, light, form, lines, and the overall space. In a bedroom, for example, a thin-weight rug can be displayed elegantly at the foot of a made-bed to create opulence. Moreover, it’s functional because it adds another layer in cooler weather.

Rug Element by Nazmiyal

5. Tapestry Design

Bedrooms are another area that rugs can be displayed as art. Hung on a wall tapestry style, a favorite patterned rug can function as a trendy headboard in place of traditional bulkier constructions.

6. Rugs and Minimalism 

While sparsely furnished rooms may be in style, recognize that a single color rug can be hung on vast bare walls to bring beauty and statement into a space.

7. Think Table Runner

A woven rug can easily be used as a table runner or a full tablecloth for many occasions. Decorating isn’t just for the holidays, and oriental rugs are wonderful for elevating bureaus and buffet hutches too. 

8. Be Creative

The top creative tip on arranging rugs is to mix up shapes and sizes. Try out a round rug beneath a long rectangle sofa or table. Perhaps set furniture half-on and half-off a large rug in a corner area. 

Creative Rug Arrangement by Nazmiyal

9. Size it Up

Many homeowners opt for purchasing a smaller rug because of price, and sometimes because they may desire a specific color or texture. Let taste dictate the purchase. You can always custom order a larger rug when the time is right, and in the meantime, a smaller one will allow more options for arrangement.

10. Exaggerate the Rug’s Presence

Finally, give a rug all the visual impact it can have by using it to harmonize with the other furnishings in the room. In other words, a rug’s design is always maximized by what’s around it.

This auction blog was posted by Nazmiyal Auctions.

Rug Symbolism: The History And Symbolism Of Oriental Rugs

Rug Symbolism: The History And Symbolism Of Oriental Rugs

The Meanings of the Rug Symbolism of Oriental Rugs

There are ten distinctive designs of Oriental rugs. Once you understand the origin of the design and the meaning of the rug symbols, you will be able to read the design a lot easier. In the past, every Oriental rug told a story through the design. This included a fairly accurate representation of the village, district, city or county where the rug was woven. As time passed, the commercial expansion during the start of the Twentieth Century led to changes in the designs. The area the rug was woven was not always discernible. Reading the older rugs offers you a fascinating look at the history of the rug. 

The Patterns of Oriental Rugs

There are three basic elements to every pattern. These are the repetition, unit and system of organization. You can interpret this in a rectilinear or curvilinear manner. When the design of the rug uses a repeating motif to fill the entire field, this is referred to as an all-over design. Some rugs center a dominant medallion. The rest of the rug is designed around this medallion. One of the oldest and most frequently used designs in Oriental rugs is the herati pattern. You may hear this referred to as fish or mahi. There is a gorgeous Kirman Vase rug woven late in the Seventeenth Century in Southeast Persia. Baroness Alice de Rothschild once owned this carpet. 

Mahi Pattern Rug by Nazmiyal

As time passed, the rugs woven in Persia continued to use the herati design. This design was also popular with the nomadic tribes in South East Persia including the Qashqai. You will hear this referred to as the all-over design due to the much tighter and smaller scale. The design is woven in the ivory field. This continues into the corner spandrels. Another repetitive, all-over pattern is called the crab or harshang design. This design was originally used in Persia, in the Khorasan district. The origin was originally derived from the in and out Isfahan palmette design. There is a Persian kelleh that has the palmettes with open claws. These look much like crabs. 

The boteh motif is ancient and used all over India and Persia. You will hear this design called the pear or paisley motif. The meaning of boteh in Persia is a cluster of leaves coming from either the pine or the palm. Nomadic tribes and village weavers frequently used this design for their trappings. You will see this pattern displayed in different arrangements and directions. This may be a rectilinear or a curvilinear style. A good example is the Central Asian tribe using the interlocking and elaborate band on a trapping from the Nineteenth Century. This design can also be seen in an Akstafa runner with multi-colored, staggered rows. 

Boteh Motif Rug by Nazmiyal

Rug Symbolism of Medallions

Medallions were first used during the Fifteenth Century in Persia for the creation of a symmetrical design for manuscript covers. During the Sixteenth Century, this design started being used for carpets. The earlier Tabriz medallion became classic during this period. This style was associated with large and beautiful medallions enclosed or overlaid with intricate, spiraling floral vines. The tradition of the medallion continued as the centuries passed. You can interpret this as either a rectilinear style common for the rugs of Heriz or as a curvilinear style frequently used for rugs by the Tabriz. 

The medallion design was not only popular in Persia, you will see this design used in carpets all over the Caucasus and Anatolia. In these areas, the rugs usually contained a strong, geometric style. The medallion was centered in a double-niche, Seventeenth Century Anatolian rug. A long Kuba rug incorporated a multiple arrangement using a white-ground during the Eighteenth Century. Three medallions were woven one on top of the other. 

Medallion Pattern Rug by Nazmiyal

Rug Symbolism of Pictorial designs

During the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries, certain workshops chose to depict subjects from classic poetry and pose as opposed to the more abstract patterns. The scenes of mythical subjects, courtly life and hunting were woven using silk and wool. Since these carpets were more finely woven, the images were more accurate and intricate. Some of the master weavers were in Kirman. They were extremely adept at depicting scenes both naturalistic and intricate. They often found their inspiration from the designs used in the Western works. One of the pictorial carpets of this time was drawn using a Gobelin tapestry of Louis XIX. This was from the Les Sujets De La Fable series based on Raphael’s drawings. 

Pictorial Rug Design by Nazmiyal

There is a Northwest Persia Heriz rug woven from silk featuring grotesque birds and animals writhing together. This is a variation of what you will hear called the waq-waq tree. This tree came from India and is classified as a Persian oracular tree. The branches of the waq-waq tree bear fruit depicting the heads of mythical animals, women or men. The Tree of Life rug symbolism can be seen in Kirman pictorial rugs. This image is a representation of eternal life. This theme has become essential for both religion and mythology. 

The tree is placed at the base of the field and uses leafy branches full of birds or flowers to fill the remainder of the rug. In many cases, you will see a pool or a stream with wandering animals at the base of the tree. The tree is a symbol of the underworld, earth and heaven. 

This auction blog was published by Nazmiyal Auctions in New York City.

Rug Auction Has Something For Everyone

Rug Auction Has Something For Everyone

Vintage and Antique Carpets at Rug Auction


Buying rugs at an auction can be a great experience and an excellent opportunity to buy a beautiful rug at a reasonable price. Nazmiyal Auctions, with 4 decades of experience in the rug industry and nearly 2 decades of experience running auctions, is now making rug auctions more accessible than ever with the launch of a new online auction platform.

Why Buy Antique Rugs at Auction?


For collectors, interior designers, dealers, and private clients, vintage and antique rugs are a hot commodity. For the most part, modern rugs can’t even compare to antiques in terms of intrinsic value as a piece of art. While modern rugs are currently manufactured en masse and represent whatever design trends are accessible at the time, sometimes using cheap materials to make them more cost-effective, antique rugs were carefully labored over by master rug weavers. Furthermore, many antique rugs were created with vegetable dyes or dyes derived from insects and fixed to last indefinitely. These dyes were different than modern chemical dyes because it was nearly impossible to achieve the same hue each time, giving each rug its unique look. As such, these antique rugs each carry a story, history, and personality. The beauty and history that goes into every single antique rug are desired because of its ability to bring life and emotion into an otherwise dull living space. Antique rugs are also considered an investment as they retain and sometimes even increase their value if they are kept in good condition.
These highly sought after collectible pieces of art are becoming rarer as the years go by. Not only are they valuable because of their history, but they are valuable because there is always a market for vintage rugs and their resale value. This is why rug auctions are an incredible opportunity to search for the best pieces and acquire the rugs at great prices.
Auction Gavel by Nazmiyal

Antique Rugs at Auction


So why buy antique rugs at an auction as opposed to directly from a dealer? For starters, if the auction is being run by a reputable company with reliable buying power in the rug industry the way that Nazmiyal is, they will be able to acquire the best rugs available at the lowest possible prices. Being in the antique rug industry for many decades and maintaining an honest, successful reputation means that when a new antique rug enters the market, Nazmiyal is almost always given first access and can negotiate the best price. It’s important to know what you are looking for and a little bit of information about the types of rugs you are looking for in general. If you have an idea in mind of a budget and the type of rug you are looking for, it is possible to find an incredible deal at an auction that you wouldn’t be able to find anywhere else.
Since there is an excellent selection of rugs available at Nazmiyal Auctions, it’s possible that you could be the only bidder on the carpet that you want and buy it at the incredibly low starting price. Keep checking back to see the new rugs that are added and the great deals that are continually becoming available. You may also want to check out our glossary of terms.

Antique Rugs as a Decor Piece


Rugs are often the main decorating item of a room that the rest of the space is based around. Usually, if it is a good investment, the rug will be the most expensive piece in the room and set the tone for the rest of the decor. Since it is a big investment, it’s essential to choose a rug you like and consider spending a little more on a quality piece since it is something you will have for a long time. Depending on where in the room the rug is, as well as how big it is, it will decide where the eye will go first and what someone sees upon entering the room. It is the anchoring decor piece. As any fan of The Big Lebowski will know, “the rug really ties the room together”.
In auctions, rugs are moving fast, with rugs continually sold and new ones added. Keeping up with rug auctions means that you will regularly be seeing a changing selection, and could find the perfect piece for your space at any time. With a new online platform for auctions, Nazmiyal is making keeping up with the selection more accessible than ever.
Auction Rug Interior by Nazmiyal

Antique Rugs as an Investment


The value of an antique rug depends on the size, rarity, quality of wool, weave, color, condition, age, and design. Apart from intrinsic value, a portion of a rug’s value is based on changing trends and general taste. Generally, in terms of age, older rugs correlate to a higher value. This is because in earlier periods, rugs were woven using the absolute best materials, and careful attention was paid to the detail and quality of each rug. Additionally, in terms of size, it is usually (but not always) the larger rugs that are more expensive.
As such, buying a carpet based on trend as opposed to intrinsic value is not always the wisest choice when purchasing a rug as an investment. Collectible rugs, rare carpets, and “best” examples tend to be the best investment pieces, with a history of increasing value over time. However, many rugs can act as both a beautiful decor piece as well as an investment piece. For example, antique Persian rugs are not only a staple of interior design across time but are also woven carefully by hand, meaning they take long hours of careful work that results in a fantastic piece of art. Time heavily factors into the price of a rug, including the time it takes to grow and shear the sheep, produce the silk, tying and beating thousands of knots, and dye the rug. Rug auctions are a great platform to search for rugs in which to invest.

About Nazmiyal Rug Auctions

Nazmiyal Auctions brings together a varied, carefully selected assortment of beautiful antique and vintage rugs at the absolute best prices. A constantly changing selection means that collectors, interior designers, and private consumers will all be able to find a rug they like at a price they want. Rug auctions can be found anywhere, but there is only one place to find rugs from the most reliable company with the most experience in the industry, and that place is Nazmiyal Auctions.


Nazmiyal Rug Auction