Rugs 101

Turkish Rugs


Encompasses a large area of traditional weavers and several typical designs. Dyes used are red, yellow, orange, blue, green and black.


Rug making in Avanos dates to the settlement of Turkomen tribes in the Seljuk period and was a major rug making town in central Turkey which was very productive prior to the 1980's. Common rugs from this area have a centralised star medallion symbolising eternity, the tree of life, protection in the form of dragon's feet surrounding and floral borders to symbolise the gardens of heaven. The design also often includes small dots around the edge to symbolise a prosperous chickpea harvest.


The Herki tribe were nomadic people in the area of Turkey, Iran, Iraq, Syria and Azerbaijan. They settled in the 1940's mostly in Turkey, Iran and Iraq which is where most of the Herki rugs come from. Often rugs in this style have a central motif that symbolise family, love, affection and feelings while outer designs symbolise power and protection.


The Oushak region in western Turkey is an old, established area for rug weaving. Typical designs include floral, room sized decorative rugs. They often utilise soft and luxurious wool and have a softer palette of apricot, saffrons and pastels.

Persian Rugs


Sizing of Ardabil rugs is typically narrower and longer due to the sizing of the houses in the Ardabil region. Pinks and purples feature in these high pile woollen rugs, often with caucasian designs.


Colours often seen are Indigo blue and madder red with geometrical design, in smaller, more narrow sizes. 


Heriz rugs aren't made anymore and they are increasingly sought after. Typical colours are reds, oranges and blues. They generally have a centralised motif and geometric designs and come in larger sizes.


This village is located in north-western Iran. Common in the Malayer rugs is the use of orange flowers to dye the wool which is used in the pile. Common motif's are the sprouting seed, flowers, birds and vines often featuring an all over field design.


These tribal looking rugs are often simple with central medallions. They are geometrical with geometrical figures scattered across the field. Reds and browns are typical colourings.

Lighter Rugs and Antique Washing

Vintage rugs have been traditionally made using vegetable and plant dyes, with common colours being red, blue, orange and pink. Most vintage rugs are darker in colour and lighten through natural abrash and wear or have had an antique wash process applied. Antique washing allows a greater neutral palette which suits the aesthetic we love in our homes today.

Common Motifs and Style Features

Protection - Dragons feet, Castle motif, Ram's horn, Comb motif/Hand of Fatimah.

Love - Heart and fetter symbol, birds.

Garden of Eden - Outlying flowers, roses.

Central Medallions - The star representing eternity, happiness and the womb, Fertility design, tree of life. 

Fertility Symbols - Apple blossom.

Animals - Peacocks, camels, birds, rams.