Turkish rugs are coveted by designers for their ability to add elegance and warmth while introducing cultural verisimilitude into any space. Whether handwoven or flat-woven, they are renowned for their intricate patterns and tight, sturdy weaves that result in durable and long-lasting floor coverings. As a whole, the Turkish rug industry has historically been very influential in developing Oriental carpet weaving techniques and establishing cultural references throughout the world.
Antique Turkish rugs were some of the first Oriental carpets to be exported to Europe, and many of these pieces worked their way into the prestigious collections of European masters like Memling, Lotto, Bellini, and Hans Holbein. They are also credited with influencing the design of Persian carpets, as many small repeating patterns and guls were developed in the early Ottoman period.
From tribal designs to opulent, decorative room-sized masterpieces, the Turkish rug genre varies widely across the country and each region’s style tells its own unique story of culture and history. For example, Ladik rugs often incorporate asymmetry and elemental open patterns with gorgeous deep rose to burgundy colorations derived from natural dyes extracted from roots, plants and beetles. Meanwhile, Bergama rugs are known for their boldly stylized geometric designs and the best Turkish town rugs from the first three quarters of the 19th century exhibit refined and clearly rendered geometric compositions.
Turkish rugs are typically handknotted using either the symmetrical Turkish or Ghiordes knot, but each weaving technique creates different aesthetic characteristics and durability. In general, the more knots a rug has per square inch, the higher quality it is. To ensure a rug’s craftsmanship, look for the “Knots per Square Meter” or “KPSM” label on its underside; this indicates how many knots are in each square inch and is the most accurate way to determine its quality.vintage turkish rugs