The texture of a rug is determined by the weaving technique used in its production. Handwoven rugs possess a rich history, documenting traditional weaving methods that have been passed down over a number of generations. Retaining its structural integrity, the handwoven rug is often more expensive than its machine made counterpart as it requires a number of highly skilled weavers to carry out the intensive process over a number of months. There are several variations of handwoven rugs, each holding their own history as well as being suitable for different spaces.
When exploring different production methods, it is important to understand the terminology used to differentiate between the various weaving techniques. The following elements provide the rug with its structure, varying depending on the chosen weaving process:
WARP: The vertical yarn is attached to the upper and lower beams, creating the foundation of the rug.
WEFT: The horizontal yarn is interwoven with the warp, acting as a building block for the structure of the rug.
PILE: The pile is the thickness of the rug from the base, excluding any additional backing.
Made with the highest quality wools and silks, the hand-knotted rug is created by repeatedly tying yarn around the warp. Working in square inches, the weaver is able to control the knot count of the piece, with higher knot counts securing the weaving further and allowing for more intricate designs. The knots are calculated per square inch, and can be increased or decreased depending on the intended outcome. Knot density, or the number of knots used within a square inch area, varies between rug types.
As a result of each individual knot being made by hand, the process of weaving this type of rug often takes a number of months to complete. The intensive process carried out by highly skilled weavers guarantees that the rug is securely woven and is able to stand the test of time.
Our producers in Nepal use Tibetan knotting to create our luxury handwoven rugs. The distinctive rug-weaving technique works by incorporating a temporary rod to establish the pile height. The yarn is looped around two warps and is then wrapped once around the rod. When the row of loops is complete, the rod is then removed and the loops are cut to form the final knot.
The Persian knot is an asymmetrical knot used by our producers in Jaipur. The yarn is wrapped around a single warp and is then passed behind the adjacent warp as to separate the two ends of the yarn. With the asymmetry of the knotting allowing for the yarn to be more tightly packed together, Persian knotting allows for exquisitely detailed designs to be integrated into the plane of the rug.
Formerly known as the Ghiordes knot, the Turkish knot is formed by passing yarn over two consecutive warp strands. Each end of the yarn is then wrapped around the warp strands and brought back to the surface through the middle of these warps. Due to the double knotting technique, Turkish rugs often use geometric patterns and motifs as well as a thicker quality.
Handloom pieces are traditionally woven on a vertical loom, with yards being wrapped around rods of varying diameters during the weaving process. The pile yarns lie in loops over the inserted rods, which allow for the loops to keep their shape once the rod has been removed.
Upon removing the rod, the pile loop can be left as is or snipped to create a shaggy cut pile effect. The thickness of the rod used within the weaving process determines the pile height, with thicker rods producing larger loops and more of a dynamic texture.
Flatweave rugs often come in the form of Kilims and Dhurries, both of which are created by tightly compressing the interwoven warp and weft yarns with a beater. Unlike the handloom rug, however, the flatweave technique doesn’t involve the wrapping of yarns around rods to create the rugs pile height. Instead, the flatweave has no pile height but a visible design on both sides of the rug.
Flatweave rugs are often looked upon favourably as unlike hand-knotted and loomed pieces, there is no shedding of fibers. The strength and resilience of the flatweave makes it a suitable option for high traffic areas, and is less affected by indentation caused by furniture.
The varying effects achieved by using different weaving techniques allow for the materials to be truly appreciated, creating an array of textures suited to the project. Knots Rugs Textures collection explores the qualities of each material used through the employment of these artisan techniques, combining methods of weaving to create unique pieces for any interior.