Country Rugs (Traditional, Tribal) – How are they different from ‘City’ Rugs?

Country rugs (sometimes called ‘tribal”) are usually made of material found in the region or origin; for instance, a lot of rug weavers use cotton for the warp and weft of the rugs they weave. Cotton is less elastic than wool which makes it easier to weave a straight and flat rug. However, semi-nomadic pastoralists, like some Afghans, use wool for their warp and weft because they do not produce cotton themselves. These country Persian rugs are frequently less tightly knotted than rugs made in cities.  Their designs are geometrical and plainly drawn. In the making of country rugs fewer colors are used (five or six) and even vegetable dyes such as madder and indigo are still used.


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 City rugs are made specifically and purposely to be sold. This indicates that their design and colors are chosen according to what is more likely to be better sold at markets than to keep the conventional patterns and colors of a traditional rug. What’s more, these rugs display intricate patterns with many colors, usually more than ten. City rugs are often the product of very specialized labor as opposed to the care, love and dedication put into each traditional rug by the country weaver. In the making of city rugs lots of people participate in each different stage of the process: designers and graphic makers decide on the design; dyers come up with the colors for such designs; weavers create the carpets and finally washers wash them to end the process with a high quality rug ready to be commercialized.

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Click here to see a full photo album of bold, tribal rugs 

Special thanks to for the brief summary above.

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