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What is Persian Rug?

Updated: Feb 12

Persian rugs can make beautiful additions to any home thanks to their vibrant colors and intricate designs. The term Persian rugs today is used for rugs woven in India, Pakistan, China, and Afghanistan. True Persian rugs are handwoven and must be made in Iran. However, weavers in those other countries have borrowed the Persian design and make rugs for more moderate prices.

However, original high-quality Persian rugs are superior to others. Before 1935, Iran was called Persia, and the term Persian is used when describing these specific types of rugs. The rugs that may look similar, but are woven in other countries, such as Romania or India, are not Persian. This is one of the most important things to consider when purchasing this type of rug.

What to Expect with the Rugs

A Persian rug called a kilim would be a flat weave rug. Persian rugs could also be knotted pile rugs. You can find gorgeous rugs that allow for highly detailed patterns, thanks to the use of Persian knots. They are asymmetric knots that have one half tied tightly and the other half is loose. These rugs can be made from different materials—wool and silk.

Real silk rugs will typically have a high knot count. It will typically be at least 200 knots per inch (KPI), while many high-end Persian rugs will have more than 500 KPI. These one-of-a-kind rugs tend to be vibrant and lustrous, as well as delicate. The designs on silk tend to be more complex than with a wool rug.

However, that doesn’t detract from the Persian handmade rugs woven using wool, which often utilize a high count of Persian knots, as well. The wool used for hand spun is long strand wool. Another term for this is winter wool, which is even longer and has more natural oil in the fiber.

The colors tend to stand out on these types of rugs. Typically, pure organic dyes are used, such as vegetable dyes. These organic dyes have been used since these rugs were first made. The rugmakers continue to use them because they work so well and provide the vibrancy people have come to expect.

You can use a Persian rug to add beauty and interest to any area of the home including the living room, bathroom, hallway, or kitchen. A range of different sizes is available to accommodate nearly any space. While you can find new Persian rugs to buy, you could also look for antique Persian rugs with some history if you prefer.

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