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Amongst the Armenian community of this district, Lilihan carpets are the most famous. These carpets are a velvety surface and are finely woven. The design and to a certain extent the colors of the Lilian carpets resemble those of the “American Sarugh”. This design came about through the activities of a representative for a New York firm (who chose patterns among those commonly used in Arak and Sarugh designs). These were characterized by long pile in different sizes, red or light beige fields with dark blue borders.rug

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Among the different categories of Arak carpets, the Farahan carpets are the most famous and renowned. Their design, knots, and method of weaving are very similar to those of Sanandaj carpets. At present carpets and runners with very small flowers and yellowish green colors resembling those of the Harati design are produced in this area. In Farahan (just like in Sanandaj), rugs resembling a folded horse saddle are woven.rug

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rug It has a good reputation among buyers in Iran and abroad and the fame of these rugs is widely diffused in the United States. The best carpets of this district are woven in a village by the name of Giass-Abad. Many different designs are used for modern Sarouk rugs (among them the medallion, corner designs, Harati Botteh, and Lattice patterns). The classic colors used in Sarouk carpets are red, blue, beige, green, and yellow. Old and antique pieces had mostly pink and pastel colors. Except in some older pieces, the Senneh knot is used in the sarouk carpets.

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The central province and its capital Arak is one of the most important carpet producing centers in Iran The carpet weaving in this area dates back to the time when Shah-Abbas the great, gave his consent for the settling of a group of Armenians in that area. Among them there were many skilled weavers, but the main progress occurred during the reign of the Gajar Dynasty. The basic reasons for the development of the carpet weaving industry was due to the fact that many merchants from Azarbaijan invested large sums of money for supplying and exporting carpets to the German markets. Moreover, many foreign companies opened branches in Arak, for business enterprises and exportation purposes. The most famous of them was an English firm, Ziegler, which established workshops and installed looms (in 1883 in sultan-Abad, for producing carpets according to the demand of the European markets.

After the defeat of the Germans and their allies in the First World War, Arak lost most of its high profile customers. Soon after that, the economic crisis in America (1929) and its effects on the rest of the world caused a large setback to the carpet industry within the US (this decline continued through the Second World War as well). Fortunately, after a short period (and help from a number of Persian capitalists) the industry started to thrive again.

Most of the carpets woven in Arak are of medium quality but there are some valuable Sarugh and Farahan carpets that are highly regarded by buyers and collectors. The colors used for these carpets are mostly herbaceous. Except for Farahan carpets, all the other woven in the area of Arak have Senneh knots. In this locality it is almost rare to find fraudulent knots. The wool of the Arak carpets is of the best quality as well.

The design of the carpets (which are limited to this region), differ from each region to the next. The Arak carpets typically composed of branches and leaves with blue borders and rose colored backgrounds. rug

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The provinces of Chahar Mahal and Bakhtiari are two different zones joined together. A district of this province named Bakhtiari is situated between the Zagros Mountains stretching as far as Khuzestan. On the eastern part of the dividing line from Zagros towards Esfahan is Chahar Mahal.

The district of Bakhtiari and Chahar Mahal is the main center and the summer quarters of the big Bakhtiari tribe. The route of their migration is around Shahre-e-kord, which extends to the border of Masjed-Soleyman and Izeh (in Khuzestan). Carpet weaving in this area was first introduced not more than one hundred and eighty years ago. It is important to note that the carpets known as Bakhtiari are not produced by the Bakhtiari tribesman. Rather, the Bakhtiari rugs are woven by craftsman in the cities, villages, Armenians, and nomads who have settled in the Chahar Mahal area.

The quality and the weaving technique of Bakhtiari rugs vary from location to location. The knots in Ghiordes and the weft can be single or double, depending on the place where it’s produced. These rugs are relatively coarse and durable. However, one can also find decorative and beautiful carpets with interesting and pleasant designs made of natural and brilliant colors (either woven for Baktiari tribal chiefs or those which are produced under the patronage of the Iranian carpet company). The dyers often prefer to use natural colors to dye the fibers of the carpet. Their preference for the background colors is mostly red, blue, green, golden yellow, turquoise, dark blue, and brown.

Small rugs such as Zar-o-nim and Do-zar up to 12 square meters are also produced within this province. Amongst a large variety of Bakhtiari designs, the one in particular that dominates is the mosaic design (or repeated panels). In this type of rug, the field appears with a regular quadrangular and hexagon network. Each of these panels contains different motifs and is woven separately. Examples include the weeping willow tree, cypress tree, vases full of flowers, or birds on a branch. In these panels, there are no similarities or overlapping designs, each panel could be a different design as well as color.

Today, in locations such as Ghom, Birjand, and Tabriz, finer carpets are produced which imitate the design of the Bakhtiari rugs. Important centers for carpet weaving in Chahar Mahal and Bakhtiari are shahre-e-kord (the main center of the province) and the surrounding villages. Chal-shotor, Saman, Shalamzar, the town of Borujen, and the depending villages are other locations where these are produced. In these locations rugs with Esfahan motifs are also produced.

The Owlad tribe weaves medium low-priced carpets in mosaic designs while the Yalmeh (another nomadic tribe of the Lors) produce medium “fine” rugs. There is a great difference and a complete contrast in the geometric designs with Bakhtiari patters woven in Yalmeh. Their style is similar to that of the Ghashgha’i rugs. Yalmeh rugs are generally traded in the Esfahan and Shahreza markets. Occasionally they are classified as Shiraz rugs.

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r616817 Many years ago the Aba (sleeveless cloak), was finely woven with camel’s wool in Na’in. Almost seventy years ago, the government of that time period prohibited the wearing of old fashioned clothes. The weavers of the Aba were forced to change their profession and they started a new enterprise. The result was the creation of the beautiful and fine rugs that have gained fame within both Iran and the rest of the world.

After the Second World War, specific and determined patterns were made which were gathered from the whole collection of carpet designs in Iran. One of the special features of Na’in carpets is the insistence of the dyers to use cool colors. Their preference is white, dark blue, light blue, beige, and sometimes red.

The dimensions of the Na’in rugs vary from the smallest sizes (Poshti) up to larger sizes. Warp and weft are made of cotton, the pile is made of wool, and they normally use the silk around the motifs to make the design outstanding. The designs often used in Na’in carpets are overall Shah-Abassi animal with multiple antlers, multiple armlets, bazu bandi, Shah-Abasi medallion and corner.

The weaves varies between fine and extremely fine, (3,000 to 10,000 knots per square meter). To determine the fineness of Na’in rugs the terms six ply (shesh-la) and nine ply (noh-la) are often used (with shesh-la being much finer than noh-la).

Rug Style


In the city of Kashan, the record of weaving brocade and velvet textiles as well as gold-embroidered materials and fine-knotted rugs reach back to the era of the Safavid dynasty. At that time, each piece was exemplified for the talent shown in dyeing and weaving and was a formidable example of craftsmanship. In those days, carpet weaving in Kashan reached its highest peak and the talented artists left many valuable samples of their masterpieces (of which a certain number occupy famous museums around the world). One of these aforementioned kashan rugs is the famous “hunting scene” carpet, which can be admired in the museum of Vienna.

The highest degree in the art of weaving, dyeing, and designing carpets in the world is also reflected in the gold-embroidered “Polonaise” carpets. After this period of splendor, the art of carpet and textile weaving in both Kashan and the other areas began to decline. Kashan produced carpets of the highest artistic craftsmanship over several centuries. Specifically, those which were produced many years ago, are beautiful and desirable resulting in many carpet lovers ardently wishing to obtain possess them.

Not long ago, most of the Kashan rugs were woven with merinos wool, but because of its high cost, the usage of this wool was limited. At present the wool needed in Kashan and its dependencies is provided from internal sources such as Khorasan, Kermanshahan, and Tehran. Formerly, “Kork” and fine silk carpets were produced in Kashan but Ghom is the current leader in producing rugs of this category.

Fast-colored, double-weft, and Senneh knotted rugs and carpets have laquer-red, dark blue, turquoise blue, off-white beige, brown, and pistachio green background. All formats are common (with most falling into the 1.5 by 2.2 meters and larger sizes) with the exception of runners.

Shah-Abbasi medallion and corner, overall Shah-Abbasi, overall vases, candelabra medallion, tree with mehrab, portrait, panorama, and geometrical Josheghan designs are those mostly woven in Kashan. Warps and wefts are of finely spun cotton. The Carpets are dense with the quality of the carpets ranging from fine to very fine (up to 1,000,000 knots per square meter). Different kinds of carpets and rugs resembling those of Kashan are woven in the dependencies and villages such as Nushabad, Aran, Fin, Natanz, Ghamsar, and Ravand (with the most popular coming from Natanz and Ghamsar).

Rug Style


The Second World War caused serious damage to the trade and industry of the market in Isfahan and the world market. During this period the raw materials used for weaving rugs such as wool and dyestuffs became expensive. In the meantime, some dishonest and profiteering weavers took advantage of this situation and began to cheat and swindle.

The fame and trade of Isfahan carpets that was in the forefront of all other carpets in Iran began to decline and the business was at a stand-still. Fortunately, the quality of fibers used for the carpets has improved in recently times. By re-starting many weaving factories and creating marvelous and fine woven pieces, Isfahan has regained its celebrity status in the carpet landscape.

In the past years and up to present times, the artists of Isfahan often design draw their sketches from the diaphoretic and simple glazed tiles of the Chechel-Sotun Building, Nagshe-Jahan, Madreseh Chahar Bagh, Masjed-e-Sheikh, Lotf-ollah, and other historical buildings.

The patterns used most in Isfahan rugs are Shah-Abbasi medallion, Eslimi medallion, trees and animals, overall Shah-Abbasi, and geometrical medallion and corner.

Isfahan was one of the most important centers for the cultivation of various plants used in dyeing. Ronas (Madder) as well as wild plants containing colored products can now be found in its mountains and deserts. Natural colors were used in dyeing centers due to their abundance at the time but large quantities of dye-stuffs (particularly chromatic compounds) are used presently.

The numbers of the dye-stuffs in Isfahan carpets are mostly beige, buff-white, red, dark blue, and turquoise. The wool used for weaving is obtained from Kerman, Yazd, Khorasan, Kermanshahan, and foreign sources. Isfahan carpets are amongst the best of Persian products (due to their hard wearing and decorative nature). The piles of high quality Isfahan carpets are thick and made of “kork” and the foundations are of cotton (with the finest being woven from Silk).

Isfahan rugs include a small panel with an image of the Iranian flag at the top or bottom, the weaver’s signature is woven within these panels.

Rug Style


The province of Hamedan is located in the west of Iran, and the city of Hamedan, the capital of this province, in the one of the most ancient and historical cities of Iran. Its origin goes back to the second millennium BC. The Medes made in their capital.

This province is one of the most important regions in Iran that produces carpets in large quantities (they are usually of commercial quality). Sometimes one can find fine carpets in Hamedan. Few villages make carpets in Hamedan. Few villages make carpets (in the larger size) but more typical sizes of Hamedans predominate, with one or two areas specializing in runners.

In this province the carpets are woven in floral and stylized patterns. Their designs are corner medallion, flower bouquets, Botten-Miri, interlaced fish design (which is also known as Haetiand Zell-e-Sultan). The knots of the Hamedan carpets are often Ghiordes and they are thick-piled. Many years ago the colors used for weaving them was natural beige or camel wool which had a great success amidst the Europeans, as they found them very suitable to spread in the dark and narrow corridors and halls of their buildings. Today, these natural colors are still used.

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Bijar has one of the finest weaves of Iran and carpet weaving in this area has been a traditional occupation for hundreds of years. Throughout their history, the weavers of Bijar have used up to three and even five wefts in each row of knots. This is a much heavier carpet than the typical Sanandaj style.

They should always be rolled instead of folded before being moved. There are various designs in Bijar carpets. Some of the dominant designs are as follows: Botteh, Harati, Mina-khani, zell-e-sultan, and Golfarang (flower bouquets).

The size of Bijar carpets is approximately 1.5 to 10 square meters. Runners are relatively rare. All the carpets of this area have Ghiordes (Turkish) knots and are thick piled. The dominant colors in this region are red, blue, indigo, ivory, and pink.