Please, add your first item to the wishlist

How to identify a good quality luxury carpet


How to identify a good quality luxury carpet

For centuries, the Pazyryk rugs have been retained in Russia’s Hermitage Museum as a testimony to its quality. They have been much sought after through the centuries. We know from inventories that Henry VIII owned several hundred luxury rugs, some of which are depicted in his many portraits.

A good quality luxury rug should last for generations and should be considered as an investment for the future, instead of a ‘use and discard’ item. There is quite a choice out there in terms of price, quality, and material. Now the question is, how do you determine the quality of a carpet? 

Here are a few quick pointers to assist you:

1. Techniques that create high-quality luxury carpets:

Hand-knotted Vs Tufted Vs Machine made

Before we move to the knotting etc, it is important to identify if a carpet is hand-knotted (each knot tied by hand on the foundation), tufted (made by sticking the fibre to a base using a machine), or machine-made (stitched on a power loom). The price and age for the 3 differ significantly, hand-knotted being the costliest and one that will usually last the longest.


2. Knot count of high-quality luxury carpets:

Understand your knots, threads, and warps

The more knots in a rug, the higher quality it is. This is especially true for silk carpets where the fibre itself is so fine that a higher knotting is truly a testament to the quality. This will also be clearly visible in the pattern which should be very sharp. Within this segment there are silk carpets with a cotton pile and silk carpets with a silk pile. The latter is the most superior and will come with some of the higher knotting in the hand-made rugs category.

In all wool carpets, knotting is of importance, but it is not the only factor to determine quality.  Knots determine density and durability; however better knotting is possible only if high quality raw material is used. The use of fine wool will result is a much more durable and long-lasting rug as it is made from tightly-woven, strong threads. It can withstand foot traffic and incur minimal wear and tear, especially compared to other categories of rugs.

You should also check the rug's pile by wiggling your finger on top of it. Denser the better as it will not wear off easily.  

3. Age classification of high-quality luxury carpets:

A rug can reveal much about its history

Most luxury rugs and carpets can be classified by how they were woven - hand or a small loom produced by a wandering tribe, part of a cottage industry in a village, or created by a professional or workshop. 

Vintage: Vintage rugs and carpets were woven during the mid-20th century until the 1970

Antique: Antique rugs can be classified as over 80 years old, were woven in cities, towns or villages. The designs of these carpets display distinct histories and traditions. The quality here is well varied based on the raw material and vegetable dyes used. City carpets were more often woven for nobility or commissioned and commanded a much higher value.

Antique red and black luxury carpet by Carpet Cellar

Modern: Rugs of modern times were woven in settled environments, the looms tended to be erected within the home and the rugs were woven with a drawn design.

Modern luxury carpet in shades of blue by Carpet Cellar

4. Dyeing techniques of luxury carpets:

Natural dyes make for rich colors

Around 1860, synthetic dyes were introduced. So, many collectors do not prefer having rugs woven after that date because the colors and details of natural dyes may not be present.

It is possible to tell if a rug has been dyed naturally by the color changes within certain color-forming visible bands called abrasions. The reason for this is that each batch of colored fabric has a different saturation level.

5. Restoration of luxury carpets:

Pay heed to the extent of rug refurbishment

Antique rugs require care and attention, as with any piece of art. 

Rugs that have been refurbished to a high standard can look and perform better, but ensure that they aren’t overly restored. A well-maintained antique carpet, however, can last for several more years.


Best practises for storing luxury carpets

To store rugs, roll them inward from the bottom. It is best to roll rugs so that the pile faces the outside when storing it, to have a well-maintained foundation. 

The Carpet Cellar is a renowned curator of carpets and rugs of a wide variety. Our timeless pieces of carpets narrate a story of specific historical art and culture. We offer certified antique carpets, modern designs, kilims, and much more. 

Want to learn more about luxury rugs? Check out:

Leave a Comment

Select the fields to be shown. Others will be hidden. Drag and drop to rearrange the order.
  • Image
  • SKU
  • Rating
  • Price
  • Stock
  • Description
  • Add to cart
Click outside to hide the comparison bar
Request a Quote

Form is temporarily not available. Please visit our contact page.