Types of Materials
common materials used in the making of the oriental rugs are wool,
cotton, silk and rayon. At times, camelhair, goat-hair and horsehair are
used to a very limited extent.
Wool is the most common material
used in the oriental rug industry. It is used most often in the pile.
However, it may also be occasionally found in warp and/or weft yarns used
in the foundation of the rug. Wool's resilience makes it the best choice
of material for the making of
is the most common material for making weft and warp. It is found, though
not as often, in the pile also. It is used in it's natural, undyed
form in warp and weft, unless dyed for identification purposes.
Pure silk is the most expensive material used in oriental rugs. Therefore, it is more
commonly found in pile than in warp and weft. As well as being the
most resilient naturally occurring material, silk provides a luxurious,
lustrous look and texture to the rug. It is used to make the most
intricately knotted rugs.
Floss silk is a
man-made cellulose material often used as imitation-silk. In many parts
of the world, it is also called art-silk, not because of it's artistic
merit, but because it is artificial silk. Since it's resilience
is nowhere close to silk, rayon rugs wear much faster. Thus it bides a
collector of oriental rugs to beware of rayon rugs passed by
manufacturers or dealers as silk rugs.
Materials are drawn out and twisted together
to form yarn and this process is called spinning. The yarn can be twisted
in clock-wise direction, also called S-spun, or counter-clock-wise, called
Z-spun. For manufacture of rugs, two or three yarns are plied together to
make plied yarn. Traditionally done by hand, the process of spinning and
plying yarn is mainly done, in today's age of automation, by machines.