Antique Area Rugs
If you are on the hunt for antique rugs on sale, your search for the best prices available on the internet is over. At RugSource.com, we have vintage rugs for sale at prices that are as much as 80 percent below retail and 30 to 40 percent below the prices of our direct competitors.
Tips for Buying Vintage Area Rugs
We are proud to offer antique Persian rugs for sale and antique Oriental rugs for sale because we know we provide the best value you will find online. We also know that purchasing one of our vintage Persian rugs or antique Oriental rugs is a big step for many consumers because it represents a sizeable investment. That is why we have put together some tips you can use as you’re looking for antique Persian rugs and vintage Oriental rugs.
Follow these tips whenever you are in the market for antique area rugs for your home or workspace:
1) Start with the Antique Rug:
If possible, start with the rug when you are decorating a space. When it comes to antique Oriental rugs and vintage Persian rugs, it’s much easier to find modern fabrics that will complement a vintage rug than it is to find an antique rug that will go well with the fabric on your furniture and your window treatments.
2) Determine Size and Budget for Vintage Rugs:
Before you can begin shopping for antique area rugs, you first have to determine the number of rugs you want and what sizes you want them to be. You will also need to determine how much you can comfortably afford to pay for vintage area rugs.
3) Define Age-Related Terms:
As far as antique area rugs go, the words old, antique and vintage are relative. This is because it is very difficult to accurately determine the specific year a given area rug was made. It’s also because older antique area rugs often command higher prices, since they have more inherent value due to their scarcity.
In general, an area rug is considered an antique if it is at least 50 years old. A semi-antique rug is between 30 and 99 years old. A rug is old if it is between 20 and 99 years old. A used rug is one to 10 years old. New rugs were made within the last five years. As you can see, there is plenty of crossover when it comes to the adjectives used to describe vintage Oriental rugs that have some age on them, so it is important to define what you mean by a specific term when you are talking to a dealer.
4) Inspect Rug Color:
It was not until the 1920s that synthetic dyes were reliable enough to be used on area rugs. Before that time, vegetable dyes were used to make vintage area rugs more colorful. Compared to the decades following the 1920s, only a limited number of color options were available in previous decades and centuries. This means that if a rug has too many colors that simply are not timeworn, it may be a sign that the rug is not an antique.
5) Check Vintage Rug Woven Dates:
Often, the dates that are woven into a rug can give you an idea of when the rug was made. It is important to remember that these dates will typically be based on the Muslim calendar, which differs from the Gregorian calendar that revolves around the solar year. Be sure you can interpret the woven dates properly to avoid overlooking a rug that is truly vintage due to a misunderstanding.
Of course, the best tip for finding vintage Persian rugs and antique Oriental rugs is to shop with a dealer you can trust. At Rug Source, we guarantee our prices are the lowest you will find online, and we stand behind the quality of our vintage rugs. For more than a decade, we have helped homeowners, businesses and interior designers find high-quality antique rugs, and we will be happy to do the same for you. Shop with us online or give us a call today.
Gabbeh Rugs are Part of a Rich Persian Tradition
The traditional Gabbeh Persian carpet – known as gava in Kurdish and Luri and called khersak in Bakhtiari – is a simple, hand-woven pile rug traditionally made by the nomadic Qashqai tribes who dwelled in the Zagros Mountains of southern Iran, near the city of Shiraz. Other tribes, such as the Lurs, the Kurds and the Bahktiari also weave these carpets.
In Persian, the word “Gabbeh” means “fringe” or “in the rough.” Gabbeh rugs are rough cut and long piled rugs of rich color and the best quality wool. Most Gabbeh carpets are medium size – up to 3’ x 5’ – and feature abstract designs where shapes and color dance playfully with one another.
Variations of the gabbeh rug – such as the “Loribaft”, “Amaleh”, “Kashkuli” – may reflect the heritage of the tribe by which they are woven or the name of the city in which they are most often traded, such as “a Shiraz Gabbeh.”
The 19th century gabbeh rugs were very coarsely knotted (40kpi or less), often with shaggy pile. The name of Gholam Reza Zollanvari is synonymous with modern Gabbeh rugs. Zollanvari learned the rug business from his grandfather, a merchant in the Shirazi rug bazaar. Zollanvari pioneered the construction of fine-weave gabbehs with knot counts of 200+ kpi. Today, Zollanvari rugs are among the most popular styles of Persian rugs.
The Making of a Gabbeh Rugs: A Craft Shared Across Generations
Most Gabbeh carpets are made by women, and many are one-of-a-kind works of art. Some patterns are passed down thru the generations as mothers and grandmothers teach their daughters the art of Persian rug making. Many patterns reflect the weaver’s observations of the environments through which the tribe has passed. Some rugs are even made by the hands of many weavers.
Traditional Gabbeh rugs were woven on makeshift ground looms. These looms are built with materials are carried long distances by the nomadic tribes, or materials found where the tribe settled. Since each loom is unique, each rug is unique; this is how Gabbeh rugs get their distinctive irregular in shape.
Woven with the Wool of Mountain Sheep
Gabbeh rugs are woven from high quality wool from the tribe’s own sheep. As the tribe herds its sheep over hundreds of miles, the nomads reach high altitudes. In the summers, they stay in the highland pastures north of Shiraz in the Zargos Mountains; by winter they sojourn to pasture lands near the Persian Gulf. Sheep grazed in high altitudes produce more lanolin, giving their wool a luxurious softness and resistance to stain.
Rich, Colorful Dyes Give Gabbeh Carpets a Remarkable Color
The Qashqai people find the dyes used in Gabbeh carpets or purchase them in towns where they trade their finished carpets. Often, they use all-natural vegetable dyes to give the wool vibrant color while retaining its lanolin.
Hand-Knotted Rugs with Turkish Symmetrical Knots and Persian Asymmetrical Knots
Most of the wool used in the construction of Gabbeh rugs is handspun using a drop spindle. After the wool has been dyed and handspun, the weaver uses the loom to hand-knot the rug using Turkish symmetrical knots or Persian asymmetrical knots, or even a combination of the two. Because the all the Qashqai tribes use both types of knots, it is difficult to tell from which individual tribe any one rug has come from.
Gabbeh Rugs Are Small – Often Just 3’ x 5’ in Size
A typical size for a Gabbeh carpet is 3 feet by 5 feet. It can take 18 to 25 hours to weave even a small Gabbeh rug. Tribal Gabbeh rugs usually have lower knot counts compared to other types of Persian carpet. This low knot count and the high quality of wool makes Gabbeh rugs famous for their exceptional durability.
Durable Floor Coverings, Wraps and Bedding to Protect from the Mountain Cold
Gabbeh rugs are often floppy because they have wider rows of multiple wefts. This made the soft, pliable rugs ideal as wraps or bedding to insulate against the bitter cold of the mountains.
Gabbeh rugs are often not symmetrical due to the nomadic lifestyle of their creators, and color variations within a rug are common. Often, the variation in color in a rug tells a story of the tribe’s migration, the climates and environments it encountered, and the tribe members who contributed to its creation.
Where to Buy Gabbeh Rugs
Unless you plan to travel to Iran to shop for Gabbeh rugs in the marketplace, we’d suggest buying a Gabbeh rug online from RugSource.com or visiting our showroom. We’re proud to bring these highly coveted rugs to you – please contact us if you’d like to know more.