Chinese Rug Collection

Discover Distinctive Charm Of Chinese Rugs & Carpets

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Learn More About Antique Chinese Rugs

What are Chinese rugs?

Chinese rugs, often characterized by their rich cultural and artistic heritage, include several distinct types.

Here are some of the key traditional Chinese rug styles:

  • Chinese Antique Rugs: These rugs are often hand-knotted and feature intricate designs, including traditional Chinese symbols, flowers, and auspicious motifs. Antique Chinese rugs may have a muted color palette and a patina that develops over time.
  • Ningxia Rugs: Originating from the Ningxia region, these traditional Chinese carpets often showcase medallions, geometric patterns, and intricate borders. They are hand-knotted and may feature symbolic elements from Chinese culture.
  • Peking Rugs: Peking rugs are known for their detailed designs and fine craftsmanship. They often incorporate traditional Chinese motifs such as dragons, phoenixes, and floral patterns. Peking rugs may use a wool or silk foundation.
  • Art Deco Chinese Rugs: Dating back to the early to mid-20th century, Art Deco Chinese rugs are influenced by the Art Deco movement. They feature bold geometric patterns, stylized motifs, and vibrant colors while retaining some traditional Chinese design elements.
  • Chinese Symbol Rugs: These rugs incorporate symbolic elements such as dragons, phoenixes, lotus flowers, and other culturally significant motifs. The designs often convey meanings related to prosperity, longevity, and good fortune.
  • Shou Rugs: Shou, meaning “longevity” in Chinese, is a common motif in traditional Chinese rugs. Shou rugs often feature the “Shou” symbol, representing longevity, and may include other auspicious symbols like bats and cranes.
  • Floral Medallion Rugs: Many traditional Chinese rugs showcase a central medallion surrounded by intricate floral patterns. The medallion often represents harmony and balance, while the surrounding motifs may include peonies, chrysanthemums, and other flowers symbolizing prosperity and good fortune.
  • Blue and White Chinese Rugs: Inspired by traditional Chinese ceramics, blue and white rugs often feature a classic color combination with intricate blue designs on a white background. These rugs may incorporate floral, lattice, or landscape patterns.

When exploring traditional Chinese rugs, collectors and enthusiasts often appreciate the craftsmanship, symbolism, and cultural significance embedded in these timeless pieces. The traditional designs and techniques used in these rugs make them valuable artifacts that reflect China’s rich artistic heritage.

What makes these more traditional Chinese rugs so special?

Chinese rugs are considered special for several reasons, which contribute to their value and appeal:

  • Rich Cultural Heritage: Traditional Chinese rugs carry a deep cultural heritage, often featuring designs, symbols, and motifs that have roots in Chinese history, philosophy, and art. These rugs serve as tangible expressions of Chinese culture and traditions.
  • Symbolism: Many traditional Chinese rug designs incorporate symbolic elements with specific meanings. Symbols such as dragons, phoenixes, bats, and flowers are often used to convey wishes for good fortune, longevity, prosperity, and happiness. Each element carries cultural significance and adds layers of meaning to the rug.
  • Handcraftsmanship: Traditional Chinese rugs are typically handcrafted using traditional weaving and knotting techniques. Skilled artisans invest significant time and effort in creating these rugs, resulting in a level of craftsmanship that is appreciated by collectors and enthusiasts.
  • Intricate Designs: The designs on traditional Chinese rugs are known for their intricacy and attention to detail. Whether it’s a floral medallion, symbolic motifs, or a combination of patterns, the level of detail in these rugs reflects the artisan’s skill and the artistic complexity of traditional Chinese design.
  • Quality Materials: High-quality materials such as wool or silk are often used in the creation of traditional Chinese rugs. The choice of materials contributes to the rugs’ durability, luxurious texture, and vibrant colors, enhancing their overall aesthetic appeal.
  • Historical Significance: Antique or vintage traditional Chinese rugs may have historical significance, reflecting the craftsmanship and design preferences of specific time periods. These rugs can offer insights into the cultural and artistic trends of the eras in which they were created.
  • Collectability: Traditional Chinese rugs are often sought after by collectors due to their artistic value, cultural significance, and historical connections. Antique rugs, in particular, may become rare and highly prized items over time.
  • Versatility: Traditional Chinese rugs can complement various interior styles, adding a touch of elegance and cultural richness to a space. Their versatile designs and color palettes make them suitable for both traditional and modern settings.

In summary, the specialness of traditional Chinese rugs lies in their ability to encapsulate cultural stories, convey meaningful symbols, showcase exceptional craftsmanship, and serve as artistic expressions of China’s rich heritage. Collectors and appreciators value these rugs for their unique combination of artistry, symbolism, and historical context.

More about the history of antique Chinese rugs:

The Older Antique Chinese Rugs, as opposed to most other productions of Chinese goods, were woven almost exclusively for internal consumption. Since they were mostly sheltered from European and Western influences, this offers us the reason why these carpets have a very unique truly ethnically Chinese look and appeal. In terms of materials, Chinese rugs are often woven from silk, and other materials like wool or cotton.

The art of knotting and weaving carpets was probably introduced in China somewhere between the 15th and 17th centuries. Some of the patterns in these early carpets were borrowed from those same patterns painted onto porcelain and other Chinese art. These carpets showed up in the imperial courts during their time. Today, it’s incredibly rare to find a Chinese carpet from the 17th or 18th century outside of a museum.

Only during the early part of the 19th century did China open their markets to the countries of the west (for rugs since they have been exporting porcelain, bronzes, wooden and other works of art for many years prior to the 19th century).

It is during this period (the early 1900′s and on) that we see a major and unmistakable change in the production, abandoning the traditional ornamental look to a more open and even Chinese Art Deco design. This shift in production brought with it a more commercial approach to the Chinese rug market with less attention to the quality and artistry of every single piece to more mass appeal look and price. This explains why there are so many of the so called Art Deco Chinese carpets in the market today.

To attain the true essence of Chinese weaving one merely needs to compare the pre-1910 production to the later ones. While the textile industry in China is rich in history and centuries old the earliest surviving examples of the craft are believed to have been produced during the time of Ch’ung Chen, the last emperor of the Ming dynasty who died during the first half of the 17th century.

The Ming dynasty which followed survived until the creation of the Chinese republic in 1912. This would be a good time to note that while most antique rugs are attributed to a specific manufacturer or region, authorities and scholars attribute the age vintage of any specific rug to the ruling emperor of the time. In stark difference from the other rug weaving origins, in China, the artistic impression far exceeded the importance of the quality of any said piece, the end result being that some of the beautiful pieces have coarser knotting.

Rich in culture, history and folklore Chinese carpets incorporate design almost never seen in any other type of rug. Dragons, local art and ornamental objects are almost always a trademark of these productions. Some of the symbols used in Chinese rugs have taoistic and buddhist religious origins.

Widely seen in Chinese rug designs, one also finds the Pinyan Wan / Swastika (a symbol that has been associated with the horrible acts of the Nazi party) over 3000 years old this symbol, which even predates both the Egyptian Ahnk, is the symbol used to represent harmony and Dharma, the balance of opposites. Chinese rugs are some of the most collectible rugs in the market today, sought after by collectors and consumers alike. They are widely appreciated for their uniqueness for they truly look like no other rug… instantaneously taking the onlooker on a journey to a place and time that is far simpler calmer than the world we live in today (thus achieving the goal of any truly great work of art).

The different patterns seen in Chinese rugs are also helpful in identifying which region in China the carpet came from. Different regions had and still have different traditions and customs that show through in the ways they decorate their weavings.

What to consider when shopping for Chinese rugs?

When shopping for Chinese rugs, there are several important factors to consider to ensure you make the right choice and get the best value for your money.

Here are some key things to keep in mind when buying Chinese area rugs:

  • Authenticity and Origin: Make sure the rug is genuinely Chinese and not a knock-off or imitation. Authentic Chinese rugs are usually made in specific regions like Beijing, Tianjin, Ningxia, and Tibet.
  • Material: Pay attention to the materials used in the rug. Silk, wool, and a blend of both are common materials for Chinese rugs. Each material has its characteristics, so consider your preferences and the intended use of the rug.
  • Knot Density: Knot density refers to the number of knots per square inch. Higher knot density generally indicates a higher quality rug with more intricate designs and greater durability.
  • Design and Patterns: Chinese rugs come in a wide variety of designs and patterns, including floral motifs, dragons, phoenixes, medallions, and more. Choose a design that complements your interior and matches your personal taste.
  • Color Palette: Consider the color palette of the rug and how it fits with your existing decor. Chinese rugs often feature vibrant and rich colors, but you should choose one that harmonizes with your room’s color scheme.
  • Size: Measure the area where you intend to place the rug to ensure you select the appropriate size. Keep in mind that the shape of the rug may also matter, depending on the room layout.
  • Condition: Inspect the rug thoroughly for any signs of wear, damage, or discoloration. Check for stains, tears, or loose threads. A well-maintained rug will last longer and look better in your home.
  • Knot Type: Chinese rugs typically come in two types of knots: the Turkish (or symmetrical) knot and the Persian (or asymmetrical) knot. Turkish knots are generally considered to be more durable, but both types can produce high-quality rugs.
  • Pricing: Set a budget before shopping for a Chinese rug. High-quality handcrafted Chinese rugs can be quite expensive, but there are also more affordable options available. Remember that a higher price doesn’t always guarantee superior quality.
  • Reputation of the Seller: Buy from reputable rug sellers or dealers who have a history of selling genuine and high-quality rugs. Research the seller’s reputation and read reviews from previous customers.
  • Return Policy: Check the seller’s return policy in case you are not satisfied with the rug or if there are any issues with the purchase.

By considering these factors, you can make an informed decision and purchase a beautiful Chinese area rug that adds elegance and charm to your living space.

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