In This Article
Rugs have been an integral part of home decor for thousands of years, and the Turkish and Persian rugs have been ruling the market for centuries now. Both these vintage rug types are known for their remarkable beauty, intricate designs, and unique features. However, choosing between the two can be daunting for many homeowners.
Let’s discuss what sets them apart.
Characteristics of Turkish Rugs
Turkish rugs are known for their high quality, unique design, and durability. They are traditionally made using high-quality wool or silk, which makes them soft and durable. The wool is sourced from the local sheep, and the silk is often imported from China.
Turkish rugs are also known for their intricate knotting techniques, with each rug consisting of thousands of knots. The most common knot used in Turkish rugs is the double knot, which creates a dense, strong weave.
The designs of Turkish rugs are another defining characteristic. They feature a wide range of intricate and unique designs, including geometric patterns, floral motifs, and stylized animal figures.
Each design is typically woven using a specific color palette, with the colors chosen to complement and enhance the overall pattern. Turkish rugs are often characterized by their rich, vibrant colors, which are achieved through the use of natural dyes. Common colors used in Turkish rugs include red, blue, green, and yellow.
Turkish rugs come in a range of sizes, from small prayer rugs to large room-sized carpets. The size of the rug often depends on its intended use, with larger rugs being used for more formal occasions and smaller rugs for everyday use.
Despite their varying sizes, Turkish rugs are renowned for their durability and longevity, with many rugs lasting for decades or even centuries. This is due in part to the quality of the materials used, as well as the intricate knotting techniques used in the weaving process.
Different Types of Turkish Rugs
- Oushak: Oushak rugs are known for their soft pastel colors and large-scale floral or geometric patterns. They originated in the town of Oushak in western Turkey and are highly sought after by collectors.
- Kilim: Kilim rugs are flat-woven and feature a tapestry-like design. They are made using a unique weaving technique that creates a strong and durable fabric. Kilim rugs often feature bold geometric patterns and bright colors.
- Hereke: Hereke rugs are some of the most luxurious and expensive Turkish rugs. They are made in the town of Hereke near Istanbul and feature intricate designs and high-quality materials such as silk and fine wool. Hereke rugs often feature a central medallion and intricate borders.
- Sivas: Sivas rugs are made in the town of Sivas in eastern Turkey and are known for their fine wool and delicate designs. They often feature intricate floral motifs and are highly prized by collectors.
Regional Variations in Turkish rugs
The regional variations in Turkish rugs can be attributed to several factors, including the geography, climate, and cultural influences of the area.
Central Anatolian Region: The Central Anatolian region is known for producing some of the most beautiful and intricate Turkish rugs. These rugs are characterized by their bold geometric designs and vibrant colors. The wool used in Central Anatolian rugs is very soft and lustrous, which gives the rugs a luxurious feel. The most famous types of Central Anatolian rugs are Konya, Karaman, and Sivas.
Eastern Anatolian Region: The Eastern Anatolian region is known for producing some of the largest and most robust Turkish rugs. The harsh climate and rugged terrain of this region have influenced the design and construction of these rugs. Eastern Anatolian rugs are typically made with thick, coarse wool and feature bold, geometric patterns in earthy tones such as brown, rust, and beige. The most famous types of Eastern Anatolian rugs are Erzurum, Kars, and Malatya.
Western Anatolian Region: The Western Anatolian region is known for producing some of the most diverse and eclectic Turkish rugs. This region has a rich history of cultural exchange, which is reflected in the design and construction of its rugs. Western Anatolian rugs feature a wide range of patterns, from bold geometric shapes to delicate floral designs. The wool used in these rugs is soft and fine, which gives the rugs a luxurious feel. The most famous types of Western Anatolian rugs are Bergama, Gordes, and Usak.
Aegean Region: The Aegean region is known for producing some of the most colorful and vibrant Turkish rugs. The warm climate and fertile soil of this region have influenced the design and construction of these rugs. Aegean rugs feature bright, bold colors such as red, blue, and green, and often feature floral or vine designs. The wool used in Aegean rugs is soft and fine, which gives the rugs a silky texture. The most famous types of Aegean rugs are Aydin, Denizli, and Mugla.
Characteristics of Persian Rugs
Persian rugs are highly sought-after for their unique characteristics, which make them one of the most popular types of oriental rugs. They are handmade, with each individual knot tied by hand, giving them a level of detail and intricacy that cannot be replicated by machine-made rugs. This knotting technique is one of the defining features of Persian rugs.
The materials used to make Persian rugs are also of the highest quality. The wool used is often sourced from the sheep of the Zagros Mountains in Iran, which produces a high-quality wool with a soft and lustrous texture. Silk is also used to add shine and highlights to the rug, while cotton is used as the base material for the foundation. These materials are chosen for their durability and ability to withstand the test of time.
Persian rugs are also known for their elaborate and intricate designs, which often feature floral or geometric patterns. These designs are often inspired by nature, and each rug tells a unique story through its motifs and colors. The designs are carefully woven into the rug using the highest quality materials and a skilled hand to ensure that every detail is captured.
The colors used in Persian rugs are rich and vibrant, achieved through the use of natural dyes. The most common colors used are red, blue, green, and yellow, but they can also feature more subdued colors like beige, brown, and gray. These colors are carefully chosen to complement the design and add to the overall beauty of the rug.
Persian rugs are also incredibly durable and can last for generations with proper care. This is because of the high-quality materials used and the meticulous craftsmanship that goes into making each rug. They are an investment in art and beauty, appreciated for their rarity and unique value. With their exquisite beauty, intricate designs, and high quality, Persian rugs are a true testament to the skill and artistry of Iranian weavers, and continue to be admired by people around the world.
Different Types of Persian Rugs:
- Tabriz rugs: Tabriz is a city located in northwest Iran, and it’s considered one of the most important rug-weaving centers in the country. Tabriz rugs are known for their high quality and elegance, featuring intricate designs and patterns, often with floral or geometric motifs.
- Kashan rugs: Kashan is a city located in central Iran, and it’s one of the oldest rug-weaving centers in the country. Kashan rugs are renowned for their delicate designs and vibrant colors, featuring intricate patterns and floral motifs.
- Isfahan rugs: Isfahan is a city located in central Iran, and it’s known for its rich cultural heritage and artistic traditions. Isfahan rugs are renowned for their fine quality and intricate designs, often featuring intricate floral patterns and delicate color schemes.
- Kerman rugs: Kerman is a city located in southeastern Iran, and it’s known for its distinctive rug-weaving traditions. Kerman rugs are renowned for their intricate designs and soft, delicate colors, often featuring floral or pictorial motifs.
- Qum rugs: Qum is a city located in central Iran, and it’s one of the most important centers for rug weaving in the country. Qum rugs are known for their fine quality and intricate designs, often featuring detailed floral patterns and vibrant colors.
- Heriz rugs: Heriz is a city located in northwest Iran, and it’s known for its rugged mountain terrain and rich cultural heritage. Heriz rugs are renowned for their bold geometric designs and rich, earthy colors, often featuring intricate medallions and borders.
- Nain rugs: Nain is a city located in central Iran, and it’s known for its exquisite rug-weaving traditions. Nain rugs are renowned for their fine quality and intricate designs, often featuring delicate floral patterns and soft, pastel colors.
Differences Between Turkish and Persian Rugs
Comparison of Materials Used
Wool vs. Cotton Foundation: The foundation of a rug refers to the warp and weft fibers that form the base of the rug. Persian rugs typically have a wool foundation, while Turkish rugs often have a cotton foundation. Wool is a more durable and elastic material than cotton, which makes Persian rugs more resilient to wear and tear over time.
Wool Quality: The quality of the wool used in Persian and Turkish rugs can also differ. Persian rugs are known for using high-quality, lanolin-rich wool from sheep raised in the mountainous regions of Iran. This wool is particularly soft and lustrous, which gives Persian rugs their characteristic sheen. In contrast, Turkish rugs may use wool from a variety of sources, which can result in variations in quality and texture.
Comparison of Techniques Used
Knotting Technique: Persian rugs are typically made using the Senneh knot (also known as the Persian knot), which is tied around two adjacent warp threads. This knotting technique allows for greater flexibility and creates a slightly looser weave than the Ghiordes knot (also known as the Turkish knot), which is tied around a single warp thread.
Turkish rugs, on the other hand, are generally woven using the Ghiordes knot, which results in a tighter, more durable weave.
Design Elements: Persian rugs are known for their intricate floral and geometric designs, which are often inspired by nature and Islamic art. These designs are typically created by skilled artisans who use their knowledge of color theory and symmetry to create complex and visually striking patterns.
Turkish rugs often feature more angular and geometric designs, as well as bold, abstract motifs. These designs are often inspired by Turkish architecture and decorative arts.
Dyeing Techniques: Both Persian and Turkish rugs are known for their rich, vibrant colors, which are achieved through a variety of dyeing techniques. However, there are some differences in the types of dyes used.
Persian rugs often use natural dyes, which are derived from plants and other organic sources. These dyes can produce a range of subtle, earthy hues. In contrast,
Turkish rugs may use synthetic dyes, which can produce brighter, more saturated colors.
Comparison of Design and Patterns
Designs in Turkish rugs often feature geometric shapes, such as diamonds, triangles, and hexagons. These shapes are often repeated in a symmetrical pattern across the rug. Turkish rugs also often incorporate bold colors, such as red, blue, and yellow, which are contrasted with white or cream backgrounds. The Turkish knot, which is a double knot, is used in Turkish rugs, which results in a thicker and more durable rug.
Persian rugs are known for their intricate floral and curvilinear designs. The patterns in Persian rugs often feature intricate and detailed motifs such as flowers, leaves, vines, and animals. The designs are often asymmetrical and have a sense of movement and flow. Persian rugs also use a variety of colors, including reds, blues, greens, and gold. The Persian knot, which is a single knot, is used in Persian rugs, which results in a finer and more delicate rug.
One of the significant differences between Turkish and Persian rugs is the cultural significance and symbolism associated with their designs. Turkish rugs often feature motifs and symbols that have been passed down through generations and hold cultural significance. For example, the “evil eye” is a common symbol in Turkish rugs and is believed to ward off evil spirits.
Persian rugs often feature motifs that have symbolic meanings in Persian cultures, such as the lotus flower, which represents purity and perfection.
Comparison of Knot Count
Knot count, also known as knots per square inch (KPSI), refers to the number of knots woven into one square inch of a rug. The higher the knot count, the more detailed and intricate the design of the rug can be.
Persian rugs are known for having a higher knot count than Turkish rugs. The knot count for Persian rugs can range from 120 KPSI to over 800 KPSI, with some of the highest quality Persian rugs having a knot count of over 1000 KPSI. The high knot count in Persian rugs allows for more intricate designs and a greater level of detail.
Turkish rugs typically have a lower knot count than Persian rugs. The knot count for Turkish rugs can range from 60 KPSI to 300 KPSI, with some of the highest quality Turkish rugs having a knot count of up to 500 KPSI. However, despite the lower knot count, Turkish rugs can still feature intricate designs and patterns.
It is important to note that knot count is not the only factor that determines the quality of a rug. Other factors such as the quality of materials, the skill of the weaver, and the overall design of the rug can also play a significant role in determining the value and quality of a rug.
Comparison of Prices
In general, Persian rugs tend to be more expensive than Turkish rugs.
One of the main reasons for this price difference is the quality of the materials used. Persian rugs are often made with high-quality wool, silk, and natural dyes, which can be more expensive than the materials used in Turkish rugs. Additionally, Persian rugs are often hand-knotted, which can take longer to create and require more skilled artisans, leading to higher labor costs.
Another factor that can affect the price of a rug is its design. Persian rugs are known for their intricate designs, which can take months or even years to complete. These designs often feature intricate floral or geometric patterns and can be quite detailed, adding to the overall cost of the rug. Turkish rugs, on the other hand, may have simpler designs or feature more geometric patterns, which can make them less expensive.
Finally, the size of the rug can also impact its price. Larger rugs require more materials and labor to create, which can make them more expensive. Persian rugs are often larger than Turkish rugs, which can also contribute to their higher cost.
Which Rug is Better? Pros and Cons of Each
Pros of Turkish Rugs
Durability Turkish rugs are known for their durability and sturdiness, making them ideal for high-traffic areas.
Price Turkish rugs are generally more affordable than Persian rugs, making them a great option for those on a budget.
Unique Designs Turkish rugs are famous for their unique designs, including geometric patterns and bold colors, which can add a touch of style and sophistication to any room.
Easy to Clean Turkish rugs are easy to clean and maintain, thanks to their dense and tightly woven fibers.
Versatile Turkish rugs come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and colors, making them a versatile option for any interior design style.
Cons of Turkish Rugs
Less Intricate Designs While Turkish rugs have beautiful designs, they tend to be less intricate and detailed than Persian rugs.
Limited Availability Turkish rugs are not as widely available as Persian rugs, so it may be more difficult to find the perfect rug for your home.
Not as Valuable Turkish rugs are generally not as valuable as Persian rugs, which can be a consideration for those looking to invest in a high-quality rug.
Pros of Persian Rugs
Intricate Designs Persian rugs are known for their intricate designs and patterns, which are often one-of-a-kind and can add a touch of luxury to any room.
High Value Persian rugs are highly valued and can be considered an investment, as they tend to appreciate in value over time.
Wide Availability Persian rugs are widely available, making it easier to find the perfect rug for your home.
Soft Texture Persian rugs are known for their soft and luxurious texture, making them a comfortable option for living spaces.
Diverse Designs Persian rugs come in a wide range of designs, including traditional floral patterns and more modern geometric designs, making them a versatile option for any home decor.
Cons of Persian Rugs
Expensive Persian rugs are generally more expensive than Turkish rugs, making them a less budget-friendly option.
Delicate Persian rugs tend to be more delicate than Turkish rugs, and may not hold up as well in high-traffic areas.
Higher Maintenance Persian rugs require more maintenance and care to keep them looking their best, including regular cleaning and specialized treatments.
Limited Sizes Persian rugs are often only available in standard sizes, making it more difficult to find the perfect rug for unconventional room dimensions.
It’s difficult to say which rug is better as it ultimately depends on your personal preferences and needs. Both Turkish and Persian rugs have their own unique qualities and characteristics, and what may be important to one person may not be as important to another.
If you’re looking for a durable and affordable rug with unique designs, then a Turkish rug may be a great option for you. However, if you’re looking for a luxurious and high-value investment piece with intricate designs, then a Persian rug may be the better choice.
Buying Turkish or Persian Rugs
Factors to Consider When Buying
Material: The type of material used to make the rug will determine its durability, texture, and appearance. Turkish rugs are typically made of wool, cotton, or silk, while Persian rugs are typically made of wool or silk. You should choose a material that suits your needs and preferences.
Knot count: The knot count refers to the number of knots per square inch in the rug. The higher the knot count, the more intricate and detailed the design of the rug. However, higher knot counts usually mean higher prices.
Design: Turkish and Persian rugs come in a wide range of designs, from simple geometric patterns to elaborate floral motifs. Consider the overall style and color scheme of the room where you will be placing the rug, and choose a design that complements it.
Size: Measure the area where you want to place the rug and choose a size that fits well. Keep in mind that Turkish and Persian rugs come in standard sizes, but custom sizes are also available.
Condition: If you are buying a vintage or antique rug, check its condition carefully. Look for signs of damage or repair. A rug in good condition will last longer and retain its value.
Authenticity: Make sure the rug you are buying is authentic. Look for the rug’s origin and the materials used to make it. Authentic Turkish and Persian rugs are usually handmade, and the production process can take months or even years.
Price: Turkish and Persian rugs can range in price from a few hundred to thousands of dollars. Determine your budget and look for a rug that fits within it.
How to Differentiate Between Authentic and Fake Rugs
- Look at the knots: Authentic Persian and Turkish rugs are hand-knotted, and the knots should be irregular in size and shape. Fake rugs may have machine-made knots that are uniform in size and shape.
- Check the materials: Authentic Persian and Turkish rugs are typically made of wool or silk. If the rug is made of synthetic materials or low-quality wool, it may be a fake.
- Examine the design: Persian and Turkish rugs have intricate designs with many colors and patterns. If the design is simple or lacks detail, it may be a fake.
- Check the back of the rug: The back of an authentic Persian or Turkish rug will have a similar design and color scheme as the front. If the back of the rug looks different or has a different color scheme, it may be a fake.
- Consider the price: Authentic Persian and Turkish rugs are valuable and can be expensive. If the price seems too good to be true, it may be a fake.
- Research the seller: Buy from reputable dealers who are knowledgeable about Persian and Turkish rugs. If the seller has a history of selling fake rugs or has poor customer reviews, it may be a red flag.
Where to Buy Turkish and Persian Rugs
There are several places where you can buy Turkish and Persian rugs, both in-person and online. Here are some options to consider:
- Rug dealers: Look for rug dealers in your area who specialize in Turkish and Persian rugs. You can visit their showroom to see and touch the rugs in person, and they can provide expert advice and guidance on selecting the right rug for your needs.
- Artisan markets: Many cities have artisan markets where you can find handmade rugs from local artisans. These markets are a great place to find unique and one-of-a-kind rugs.
- Online marketplaces: There are many online marketplaces that sell Turkish and Persian rugs. Some trusted brands we love include:
RugKnots is a brand specializing in modern and oriental handmade area rugs, providing a wide range of styles, sizes, colors, and prices. With over 50 years of experience, RugKnots offers a convenient online shopping experience, including Best Sellers, New Arrivals, and Custom Rugs options. RugKnots provides various color options, including White, Beige, Tan, Gold, Silver, Teal, Coral, Rust, Aqua, and Peach.
The brand offers an extensive collection of modern and oriental styles, including the ever-popular Persian and Turkish rugs. Handmade with quality fabric yarns by local artisans, these Persian and Turkish rugs are truly one-of-a-kind and a beautiful addition to any home.
Use promo code - 10FORYOU
Catalina Rug is a prestigious Persian and Oriental rug dealer, specializing in 100% hand-knotted rugs. The founders, Rose and Jeff Shadkam, hand-pick the best suppliers and every rug comes with a certificate of authenticity. They value customer care, quality perfection, and price honesty, offering a transparent pricing model with no bartering. With 35 years of experience, Catalina Rug is committed to providing the best experience for customers looking to invest in a rug that will last for decades.
Use promo code - Narb12
Rug Source is a leading rug store that offers an extensive range of rugs from different manufacturers at prices to suit your budget. They provide top-notch fitting and excellent customer service, and specialize in different rug styles, including Persian and Oriental rugs. Their Persian rugs have distinctive designs and unique crafting that make them a piece of art while the Oriental rugs offer vintage hand-knotted looks at budget-friendly prices. They also offer a comprehensive selection of antique rugs, modern rugs, and hand-tufted rugs suitable for contemporary living spaces and classic interior designs.
Kilim Studio offers a diverse and carefully curated selection of over 20,000 unique and authentic hand-woven Turkish and Oriental rugs, along with kilim upholstered benches, ikat pillow covers, artisan furniture, and more. They also offer customization options for their rugs and furniture, and provide helpful resources for designing with and caring for their products. With their 3D AR tool, customers can visualize how their chosen rug will look in their space. Kilim Studio aims to add beauty and harmony to customers' lives through their products.
- Auctions: Auctions can be a great place to find rare and valuable Turkish and Persian rugs.
- Traveling: If you plan on traveling to Turkey or Iran, you can purchase authentic rugs from local markets and bazaars. However, be aware that prices may vary depending on the location and vendor.
So, there you have it. Turkish rugs vs Persian rugs. We hope you now better understand the differences and learned something to better help you in your purchase journey!