Persian and Oriental rugs whether made in tribal or city surrounding are all hand knotted, the weaver ties the material (whether it be wool or silk) around the warps of the foundation using one of several different knots. After each row of knots is complete, individually tied using a variation of colored wool to form patterns, a weft strand is tightly packed between the newly completed row and the one which is about to begin, keeping each knot firmly in place. One rug can take months or even years to complete, ensuring the owner gains a unique work of art which is not only beautiful but practical and often extremely durable.
Persian Rug Foundations:
The foundation of a rug is its underlying structure. It is the foundation that the pile is knotted onto and is made up of the Warps and Wefts.
- Warp: The warp is refers to the vertical strands running up and down a rug. These are vital to the rugs structure as the knots are tied to them. The wefts are also placed between them in order to keep the knots in place. The fringe of a rug is the tied loose ends of its warp.
- Weft: The weft is used in order to keep the knots in place. Before and after each row of knots the weft strand is passed through the warp and combed and beaten down, this compacts the row of knots creating a tight structure.
Cotton is used for both warp and weft in most rugs, however, some tribal rugs use wool in their foundation and intricate silk rugs often use silk as a foundation as well as pile. Pile refers to the material or fibre used in weaving the rug. The main materials used in Persian rugs are wool, silk and cotton. Sometimes camel or goats wool is used by tribal weavers.