Kilim Rugs

Which Country Makes the Best Kilim Rugs?

Perhaps unsurprisingly, given that Kilim is a Turkish word, Turkey is of predominant importance when it comes to this flatweave style of rug. 

Turkey and the Kilim Rug

Within Turkey, there are two main regions: Anatolia and Thrace. Anatolia is part of Asia, and it’s the largest of the two regions. Thrace is in the Balkans, with Greece and Bulgaria at its borders.

There is some historical debate about how exactly the Kilim technique was created and refined. However, both of the main theories agree that Anatolia was the region where Kilim rugs originated.

Turkey has a very rich history: for over 10,000 years, it has been a site for different tribes to migrate, trade, and go to battle.  Arabs, Greeks, Romans, and Seljuk and Ottoman Turks have all made their mark on the culture of the region. It’s from this rich heritage that the Kilim rug was born. 

The Cultural Roots of the Kilim Rug

The Kilim rug can be traced back to nomadic Middle Eastern people. These rugs were used as blankets and especially saddle blankets as well as wall decorations.

Historians believe that some of the first ever rugs bore considerable similarities to what we’d describe as a Kilim rug today! You can’t get more traditional than that.

These days, Kilims are mainly manufactured in Southern Iran and Afghanistan.

Regions and their Kilim Rugs

  • Aegean Region

    Kilims of the Afyon region in Aegean have protrusions that look like fingers that stick out from geometric shapes in their designs. Kilims made in this region often employ colors like apricot, pink, and blue. Kilims made in Bergama often have a hand of Fatima motif, which is said to symbolize fertility. In Ushak, they create Kilims for export with toned down colors but sell brighter, more vibrant rugs to the local market.
  • Anatolia

Çorum in Central Anatolia continues to be known for Kilim production, especially when it comes to long running rugs sewn together for a wider product. In both Çorum and Çankiri, they produce slitweave rugs using bright colors like red, blue, green, and yellow.

The prayer rugs of Elmadag are distinguished by their diamond motifs. In Kayseri, there is a small town called Bünyan famous for Kilim manufacturing. Similarly, Sivas kilims are considered to be of good quality.

  • Thrace

    Kilims from Sharkoy in Thrace have naturalistic designs such as floral or bird motifs. They often incorporate borders or prayer arches as well as diamond medallions. The color palette used tends to include red, blue, and green with contrasting features in white or yellow.
  • Mediterranean Region


Because this area holds considerable attraction for tourists, there is the potential to sell high quality Kilim rugs. Rugs produced in Antalya have contemporary appeal due to their simplified designs and light color palette. Different techniques including slitweave, cicim, and zili are used here.

Looking for an authentic Kilim rug? Buy from a reputable rug vendor like Rug Source. Our extensive selection and expert team make us the go-to for people planning to invest in a genuine, high-quality Kilim.

Read our other blog posts on Kilim Rugs: