View the Most Complete Guide to Antique Rug Design and Carpet Styles
Antique Rug Design and Carpet Styles - The art of antique rug making is one of the oldest crafts in the world, dating back millennia. It is also one of the most widely spread crafts to ever take hold, with peoples from all over the world practicing their own iterations of the skill. Cultures from places as far apart as Iran - the birthplace of Persian carpets - and Scandinavia - home to a great many widely-admired mid-century rug designers - have developed their own unique and distinctive rug-making techniques and styles. Each of one of these styles is unique and special in its own way.
At the Nazmiyal Collection, we take great pride in the breadth and the depth of our antique rug selection, which features a tremendous variety of antique rug patterns and designs. Our comprehensive collection includes geometric rugs, animal rugs, floral rugs, and many more patterns and styles. In addition, our selection includes vintage rugs as well as antique carpets, including exceptional tribal rugs, gorgeous village rugs, and timelessly beautiful and refined city rugs. Below are links to the largest assortment of antique rug styles and design from all major rug producing centers worldwide.
Abadeh is a town in southern Iran halfway between Isfahan and Shiraz
Afshar weavers are renowned for their great weaving skills in Persia.
Agra has been a major center of carpet production since the great period of Mugal art in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.
The production of carpets in Spain turned away from designs of oriental inspiration to a more classically derived Renaissance European style.
Produced in the Alpujarra mountains south of Granada Alpujarra rugs were made from the 16th to the 19th century.
Amritsars are extremely distinctive within the production of Indian carpets.
The term Deco applies to European and certain Chinese carpets that reflected the new movements in modern European decorative arts.
Carpets were a major part of the great Art Nouveau movement that revolutionized the decorative arts in Europe and the United States.
Aubusson carpets made with tapestry techniques are among the most elegant and luxurious antique floor coverings.
Avar, one of the largest of the Dagestan tribes in Caucasia is characteristically made with repeating rows of stepped polygons.
Antique Axminster carpets were a luxurious nineteenth-century English counterpart to the great Neo-classical designs of French Aubussons and Savonneries.
The Azerbaijan region in the Caucasus just north of Iran was already an important rug-producing region by the seventeenth century, if not earlier.
Antique Bakhtiari carpets, produced in the Zagros Mountains of Iran, are one of the few types that can encompass nomadic tribal and urban Persian design.
Among the larger rugs made in Iran, Bakshaish carpets are in a class by themselves.
Balkan embroidery is strongly influenced by the vast designs of the many Balkan countries. The Balkan countries include Albania, Bosnia, Herzegovina, Bulgaria.
Baluch carpets are among the most varied and unusual antique nomadic Central Asian carpets.
Bergama / Bergamo carpets are made in the historic town of Bergama in northwest Turkey.
The Beshirs, part of the Ersari tribe of the Turkoman's, produced their rugs in Khanat of Bokhara. The Beshir pursued a distinct weaving style.
Antique Bessarabian rugs in pile and tapestry technique occupy a unique place among European carpets.
Antique Bezalel carpets were produced in the earlier twentieth century as part of a new art school for Jewish immigrants in what was then Ottoman and British-ruled Palestine.
Antique Bibikabad carpets, woven near the Hamadan region in Iran, are related to Malayers in technique.
Bijars, produced in Northwest Iran are among the finest of Persian rugs by virtue of their design and technique.
Bokara rugs, part of the Central Asian rugs, are now more commonly known as Saryk Turkomen or as Afghan rugs.
Under the Ottoman Turkish Empire in the sixteenth century, a new style of carpet production emerged in Cairo under carefully controlled court patronage.
From the French word caterpillar was developed from an 18th century American technique called candle wicking.
Antique Chinese carpets have a very long and distinguished history that is largely independent of rug design from Middle East.
Art Deco Chinese rugs were produced from the 1910s to the 1940s. Prior to the 1920s, the design and color remained similar to classical antique Chinese rugs.
Continental rugs applied techniques and designs from Oriental rugs and early period rugs from France.
Antique Dagestan rugs, produced in the East Caucasus, were closely related to Shirvan and Kuba rugs from the same region.
Antique dalmatic or lithurgical vestments were garments similiar to robes worn by clergy....
Donegal carpets, produced during the later nineteenth and the early twentieth centuries, represent the Irish contribution to Arts and Crafts and Art Nouveau.
English rugs were not produced until the late 16th century and early 17th century. Main production centers were located in Axminster, Wilton, and Kidderminster.
Farahan carpets, produced in the Arak region of west central Iran, are remarkable for their abilty to combine different qualities and sensibilities.
Antique Gabbehs are tribal Persian rugs made with extra high pile and very simple, graphic designs focused on the use of color.
Prized by collectors and decorators alike for their glorious color and large-scale graphic design, much like Kazak rugs from the same region.
Named after the Qashqa'i tribe in Persia, these nomadic rugs represent the skillful weaving styles of the tribe.
Giordes rugs have a long and distinguished history in Turkish weaving.
Antique Hamadan (Hamedan) rugs, generally produced in scatter sizes drew extensively upon the tribal weaving traditions of Iran.
Antique Hereke rugs represent the ultimate in finesse and delicacy within the Turkish production of the later nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.
Heriz carpets are among the most recognizable rugs of Iran because of their distinctive monumental designs and the expressive power of their angular drawing.
Heriz-Serapi rugs are a family of Persian carpets located in the Northwest of Iran in the Azerbaijani region.
Indigenous to the Northeast of the United States and Maritime Canada, their production began in the 1840's
Ingrain carpets were a form of machine loomed, flatwoven, reversible carpet that became popular in the nineteenth century.
Isfahans or Esfahans, claim a very proud tradition among Persian carpets going back to Safavid times in the seventeenth century.
Joshagan, situated in Central Iran, is one of the oldest centers for continuous weaving in Iran.
The Kaitags are a multi ethnic group living northwest of Derbend in the Daghestan region.
Karabagh rugs, eagerly sought after by collectors as well as designers, have one of the oldest and most varied design traditions of any antique Caucasian rugs.
Produced in the Karajeh, a small village near Tabriz these rugs are distinguished by their use of triple and allover medallions.
Antique Kashans are among the very finest Persian rugs and carpets.
Kazak Rug Designs
Among the most prized and exciting Caucasian village rugs. Famed for their rich colors, assertive, geometric drawing, and bold, large-scale designs.
Antique Kazvin rugs were produced 90 miles west of Tehran up until the 1930s.
Since the seventeenth century, Kerman has been a major center for the production of high-quality carpets.
Kerman Lavar rugs are a specific subset of Kerman rugs that represent some of the finest, highest quality weavings from Persia.
The region of Khorassan in northeastern Iran has been famed for fine rugs going back to Timurid times in the late middle ages.
Antique Khotan Design Carpets
Located in Eastern Turkestan, Khotan produced fine rugs in the 18th and 19th centuries. Catering to a wide variety of tastes antique Khotan rugs
Antique Turkish Kilim Designs
Once overlooked as utilitarian, low status items, antique Kilims are now prized as some of the most powerful and authentic weavings of the Middle East.
Kirshehir Rug Designs
Antique Kirshehir rugs, produced in central Turkey, are valued for their rich color, excellent wool, and the geometric vitality of their drawing.
Antique Konya rugs are famed and desired for their magnificent color, lustrous wool, and unfettered bold tribal drawing.
Noted for their precise drawing and detailed design, antique Kuba rugs are probably the finest and most tightly woven rugs from the Caucasus.
Antique Kurdish rugs and carpets have only recently come to be recognized for their distinctive sense of design and fine color.
Ravar Carpets refer to the same thing - the prestigious carpet-weaving center known as Ravar / Lavar
Produced south of the city of Arak by Armenians in Persia, Lilihan rugs are known for their design.
Antique Luri rugs, produced by the Lurs of the Zagros Mountains in western Iran, are among the most impressive tribal Persian weavings.
Antique rugs from the Malayer region constitute an important and distinctive group of Persian weavings.
Antique rugs from the Marbediah manufacturer in Israel. Marbediah is known for some of the finest Judaica rugs in the world.
Mashad rugs are known for the curvilinear designs with a central medallion. Produced primarily woven in workshops or on home-based looms.
Antique Milas rugs from southwestern Turkey are exceedingly beautiful in the finnesse of their weave drawing, and subtlety of their coloration.
Antique Millefleurs tapestries of Kashmir in Northern India made in twilled technique are among the finest virtuoso textiles produced in the Orient.
Mood or Moud is a major weaving center in the province of Khorrassan in eastern Persia. Mood rugs are quite distinctive
Moroccan rugs are notable for their dynamic colorful designs and for their strong sense of geometric structure. They do...
Carpet weaving was one of the most outstanding aspects of textile production in India under the Mugal dynasty from the late sixteenth to early eighteenth centuries.
Known for their large scale, silk constructions, Nain rugs often exhibit central floral medallions with ivory fields and blue accents.
Navajo rugs, particularly the great ones, represent the native American contribution to the world of textile production.
Needlepoint embroidery technique represents a particularly European adaptation of the Oriental carpet.
Ningxia rugs are among the oldest antique Chinese rugs or carpets, many going back to the eighteenth century or earlier.
The term Northwest was coined to denote highly interesting and possibly early antique pieces that were clearly made in Northwest Iran.
Produced between the seventeenth and nineteenth centuries, these are among the most interesting textiles of this period
Oushak in western Turkey has been a major center of rug production almost from the very beginning of the Ottoman period.
Peking carpets represent a newer antique production that began in China immediately following World War I.
Perepedil is a town located southeast of Kuba, in the Daghestan region of the Caucasus
Embellished with threads in precious metals, antique Polonaise carpets are among the most elegant and lavish.
Production of Qum rugs began in the early 20th century in the holy city of Qum. The rugs are often used as wall hangings.
Antique Sarouk rugs are among the most luxurious classically derived, room-sized Persian carpets.
Rya or Ryijy is a traditional rug made in Sweden and Finland. Rya means shaggy...
Sarouk or Saruk is a small province north of Sultanabad in west Persia. Ferehans were woven in the village of Sarouk
Antique Savonnerie carpets exemplify the formal grace and elegance of classical European design.
The Scandinavian region became an area of rug production in Europe at a relatively early period. Already by the ninth or tenth centuries, Islamic silk textiles
Antique Senneh carpets, produced in Northwest Iran, are prized for their fine, delicate design and their distinctive, weaving technique.
Serab rugs are known for their fine long rugs or runners with a characteristic camel ground and lozenge-shaped medallions.
Heriz carpets are among the most recognizable rugs of Iran because of their distinctive monumental designs and the expressive power of their angular drawing
A subtype of the Kuba rug, antique Seychour rugs are made in the small town of Yukhari-Zeykhur in Azerbaijan in the Caucasus.
Highly unusual and exciting, antique Shahsavan rugs and carpets have only recently been recognized.
Shirvan rugs are often the most sought after antique weavings from the Caucasus. Shirvans were made not far from those of Kuba.
Sivas carpets are appreciated as some of the most well-made and decorative of room-sized Turkish rugs.
Although Spain is not generally thought of as a rug producing region, Spanish carpets represent the most venerable and honored tradition of rug production.
The city of Sultanabad (which is now known as Arak) was founded in the early 1800's as a center for
Sumak is a type of brocading or flatwoven pile. Sumak is named for the village of Shemaka in the Caucasus where this technique was widely practiced.
Suzani is a type of antique embroidered textile produced in Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.
Swedish kilim tapestry rugs or Rollakan have a long history in Swedish weaving, reaching right into the Modern period.
Tabriz carpets are distinguished by their excellent weave and by their remarkable adherence to the classical traditions of Persian rug design.
Talish Rug Designs
Talish rugs produced east of Moghan, on the coast of the Caspian Sea are known for their fine soft wool and medium pile.
Woven tapestries are perhaps the most venerable and highly prized medium of textile art. Tapestries have been woven almost from the beginning of weaving itself.
Antique Tehran Carpet Styles
Tehran only became a center of antique rug production after the great revival of Persian weaving was underway in the late nineteenth century.
In the second half of the 19th century the Tekke tribe was one of the leading Turkoman tribes with refined weaving skills.
Tuduc Rug Designs
Born in Transylvania, Theodor Tuduc (1888-1983) was a Romanian rug restorer and famous rug forger.
In the 19th century rug workshops began to open in Istanbul and surrounding villages, becoming more plentiful in production.
Antique Uzbek embroideries are among the boldest and most exciting examples of this technique from Central Asia.
Antique Wilton Carpet Designs
Although they were machine-made rather than hand woven, Wilton carpets from England are quite sought after.
Principally found to the northwest of Turkmenistan, the Yamout are renowned for their rugs.
Yarkand rugs are quite distinctive among the carpets of East Turkestan.
Yastiks (pillow or bolster covers) are the most desirable of small Turkish rugs, sought after by collectors because of their adaptations of classical designs.
Halfway between Isfahan and Kerman, it is hardly surprising that Yazd became heir to the great tradition of classical Persian rug weaving.
Also known as Yomut, the Yomud is one of the main Turkoman tribes. Frequently the dyrnak gul, kepse, and the tauk muska guls are used on antique Yomud rugs.
Yuruk rugs, more than any other type, exemplify the great nomadic tradition of Turkish carpet weaving (Yuruk means nomad in Turkish).
Zakatala rugs, produced in the South Caucasus are some of the rarest and most collectible village weavings of this region.
Specialty Antique Rug Styles
Textiles are cloth pieces that can range in style and design from early 4th century Coptic to shawls and French-inspired millefleur pieces.
Originally used as garments, these collectable pieces are extremely fine and almost always decorative.
Rugs made with silk foundation and silk pile. Silk rugs are prized for their lustrous quality.
The master weavers of time past are recognized for the brilliant skill in producing rugs of exceedingly high quality with colors, compositions, and designs unparalleled by any other.
These are some of the finest examples of antique rugs ever woven. They represent a selection of paradigms from various weavers and regions.
Rugs from even the largest of rooms, these pieces are inherently grand and impressive.
Embroideries are hand-stitched textiles that are often decorative in design and can even be sewn using precious metals.
The Wagireh or Sampler rug is perhaps the most enigmatic of carpets. Made as a template or pattern they're small pieces the size of a scatter rug or mat.
Rugs woven by renowned artists and designers. These original pieces reflect some of the most carefully rendered designs from ancient masters to modern maestros.
This collection holds some of the most desirable rugs in the world and features museum quality rugs and carpets for the most discernible tastes.
Mid-century modern rugs and vintage rugs have become a staple for contemporary design tastes that are revitalizing the minimalist ideals of the early- and mid-20th century.
With roots in the early 20th century, Art Deco rugs portray the foundation of modern style and design with their simplistic and often geometric designs and extensive color palette.
Antique Rug Styles and Patterns
Antique Floral Rugs
Floral designs are usually more traditional than other rugs. They are both graceful and elegant and are loved for their refined beauty.
Not as finely woven as city rugs, these nomadic rugs are rich in color with bold primitive and at times geometric patterns. Generally smaller than city rugs.
A design that repeats and covers the entire rug. These rugs are often subdued and are great under sofa's or beds because they have no center medallion.
An oval, round or multi-sided symbol woven in the center of the carpet.
Scenic rugs and textiles capture a time or place within their weave. They are very collectable and often one of a kind.
Geometric designs are often seen in tribal pieces and in modern designs. They exhibit a raw beauty in their linear constructions.
Many rugs have been woven to include various animals. They are often found in hunting scenes or in more fantastic designs like the dragons from China.
Judaica rugs can be found in many different regions around the world and exhibit Hebrew lettering and/or biblical stories.
A relaxed soft rug, distressed by age and showing signs of wear adding to it's overal sophistication and elegance.
Antique prayer design rugs are highly sought after.