As cultures crossed paths, weavers were influenced by different motifs and styles. Utilitarian artifacts soon became functional art objects, increasingly intricate and decorated. In addition to serving functions in nomadic life and homes, carpets became important during festive and traditional ceremonies, and, eventually, an essential part of people’s lives.
Whether a carpet is in a museum or in your home, its caretaker should understand what fibers the rug is composed of and how it was constructed. This informs how the rug should be cared for or displayed and the type of damages that are likely to occur.
There are several different types of carpets and rugs, including woven, knotted pile, flatweave, and more. Pile, or fabric loops, can be cut or looped into the woven structure of rugs and carpets to create the texture.
On a knotted pile carpet, the structural weft threads alternate with a supplementary weft. This supplementary weft is attached to the warp by knots.
Flatwoven carpets include kilim, soumak, plain weave, and tapestry weave. These carpets are created by interlocking warp and weft threads without a pile.