Oriental Rug Machine vs Handmade

Machine vs. handmade oriental rugs:
It is extremely confusing as all patterned rugs are always referred to as oriental rugs. Most shops and stores that deal in rugs and carpets sell both machine made and handmade rugs together as oriental rugs. It would not be surprising to find out that the sales assistants in these shops are not aware of the difference between these two types of rugs.

This page is intended to give you a clearer idea as to the differences between a genuine hand made Oriental and a machine made rug that often looks like a hand made rug.

This article attributes to rugs made with 100% wool as the pile material:

  • However, it is possible to tell apart the two by knowing the differences. A rug polypropylene nap, polyolefin, or it could be a blend of both synthetic and wool it is certainly machine made. Rugs originating for Italy, Belgium or other western European countries, are all machine made.
  • Belgium oriental rugs are also machine made rugs in good to great quality.
  • If a rug has a tag like this: Karastan type are all machine made so dont doubt what you see!

 

There are countries like Egypt and some central countries in central Europe such as Romania, Bulgaria and Albania that are known to produce purely handmade rugs. These countries have also produced machine made which adds to the confusion of the buyer.

This comparison picture shows, at the same scale and resolution, a brand-name 3' x 5' machine-made rug next to a 3' x 5' handwoven Kashan from India with a weave of about 140 knots per sq. in.:

Note the strong visual differences between the machine-made and handmade rugs. In particular, the back of the machine-made rug is very different in appearance from the back of the handmade rug. The design is not nearly as colorful on the back of the machine-made rug as it is on the face. Closer examination of the machine-made rug shows why this is so:

Machine made rugs have a lower concentration of knots in every sq. in. the back it the machine mad rug has vast difference when compared to the rear of hand crafted rug. The design of the machine made rug is not as clear as it is with handmade rug. In the case of handmade rug, the design is as clear at the back as it is in the face. The main reason for this difference is that the two are constructed in a remarkably different way.
The back of the machine made rug has a clearly visible overstitch pattern. There are no individual knots at the rear of the handmade rugs. The pile of the rug is helping together by the overstitch pattern. The fringe of these rugs is added to the rug. In hand made rugs the fringe is usually extended from the carpet as it is made strings of the warp of the carpet.

Why are the differnces are so important?

Most of the manufacturers of machine made rugs make considerable efforts make appear to customers that there is no difference between the handmade and machine made rugs. Unless the customer is well informed, they will often end up buying the machine mad rugs thinking that they actually are handmade rugs. Many of the customers are not extremely careful about this. These customers rue the purchase many years down the line when the differences of the two types of carpets start to show. Machine made rugs certainly have their following and those who want to buy them should not be dissuaded from doing it. However, the problem is that, those who look for the handmade rugs should not be confuse or denied the information they need to make the right decision about what they are about to buy. Oriental rugs are often bought for the value they gain over the years. If these original rugs are made from quality materials and cared properly, they can last a long period of time. In fact, their value will also keep growing.
Some shops deal only in hand made rugs. Others that deal in both handmade and machine made rugs take the trouble of informing the customers of the difference between the two types of rugs. These are the kinds of shops that are recommended to anyone willing to buy the rugs. In such a shop, one will be informed about all you need to know about each type of the rugs available for sale. Customers should take care while buying rugs. Avoid buying a rug just because it is from a region that is traditionally famous for making handmade rugs. There are many commercial minded entrepreneurs who are making machine made rugs in these areas with the sole intention of taking advantage of the reputation that has been made for the rugs made from these regions. Customers should get value for every cent spent on buying the rugs to add décor in their homes.