Silk Antique Rugs and Carpets

Carpets can keep a floor warm, provide traditional atmosphere, or act purely as decoration. A silk rug, even an antique one, will tend to have vibrant tones thanks to silk's unique texture. Whatever your reason for choosing silk antique rugs and carpets, you have a number of choices that can fulfill your needs.

What are some silk antique rug and carpet styles?

You may have heard the term "oriental" rug, but that is only a general description of the many rug and carpet styles found throughout the Asian continent. You can find Persian, Turkish, Chinese, and Tabriz rugs, but these are only a sampling of the many ethnic groups that create silk rugs. Whether these carpets were intended for prayer, decoration, or gift-giving, they each have detailed geometric patterns that lean toward ornate stylings and deep colors. Many Persian rugs are hand-knotted and artisanal in nature, as are European and Middle Eastern carpets. You can also find silk rugs from the Victorian era. These carpet patterns tend to feature floral designs or tapestry-styled portraits and landscapes.

What are some of the designs used for antique rugs?

Persian antique rugs typically feature geometric and arabesque designs. Rosette patterns embody the symmetry that is generally found in these types of pieces. Other patterns like girih or knot patterns are also present in antique rugs. Penrose tiling styles are less frequently found in antique silk rugs because they are slightly more updated.

How do you clean antique silk?

When covered with dust, antique rugs can be shaken out or swept lightly with a broom. Vacuuming the surface should be avoided, as heat can damage silk rugs and degrade the carpet's color and texture. Water should rarely be used to clean antique rugs.

Silk is a natural fiber composed of fibroin. This textile is strong but sensitive to water. When wet, it loses its strength and can shrink. In addition, water can cause dyes to discolor and the rug's vibrancy will be lost. Taking your silk carpet to a professional cleaner is the preferred choice, but for smaller stains, it is recommended that liquid is lifted before it dries. Then, carefully blot the area with club soda or a mixture of water and vinegar, keeping the fabric as free from moisture as possible.

What determines an antique carpet's quality?

The price of each carpet varies due to numerous factors like age and rarity. Generally, however, a tight weave makes a fine texture. The finer the texture, the smoother the feel. Hand-knotted antique carpets are some of the most expensive carpets, as these factors have a strong bearing on quality and price.