For the Love of Persian Rugs

HERIZ_210Antique Persian rugs were enjoyed both as décor and furnishings in historic Persia by the populace from the clerics to nomads to potentates. Modern day collectors can be driven by the value proposition of a Persian rug and or their decorative appeal.

If there is any question about the intrinsic value of a genuine Persian rug one only has to be reminded of the June, 2013 sale by Sotheby’s of a 17th century Kirman vase rug from southern Persia that sold for a record smashing $33.765 million.

Many of us will not be in the market for a rug with price tag of a significant fortune in the millions, however owing something of quality that will most likely hold its value through time and bring years of enjoyment to your home is still an achievable proposition.

Do you buy A Rug with your Head or your Heart?

Serious rug collectors and buyers do their research, can spend considerable time before making a purchase and know it can take up to at least ten years to see their investment bring a return of anything from 20 per cent to 100 percent. These collectors are in it for the investment and often the long haul. More people are most likely collecting rugs for the love of it as the purchase for investment sector are the minority in the global Persian rug business.

So how about the rest of us who do not have million dollar budgets to spend on a rug? Determining what is most important to you should influence your decision.

Are you attracted to owning a work of art that is a beautiful slice of history with a story to tell to adorn a living space? If so you are most likely going to let your heart be your guide when you purchase your Persian rug. The design of the rug will resonate with you have meaning for you and you are most likely making the purchase because you like the look and feel of the rug.

The material a rug is made from will also influence your choice with wool or cotton generally being at the lower end of the scale with a rug made from silk potentially pushing the price up.  If you love silk and must have a rug made from silk you can either buy a smaller rug or if you desire a large silk rug on a lower budget you may be looking at rugs that do not deliver the same quality made in China or outside of Iran.

The knot count of the rug you purchase will also influence the price. History tells us that the knot count of the rugs was just as important as the materials the rug was made of. Antique Persian rugs and silk carpet were frequently made with a knot count of 1,000 knots per inch that is significantly higher than the modern Persian carpets with a knot count between 16 to 800 knots per inch depending upon skill of the weavers and the materials used.

Keep in mind, when you are on your whirlwind holiday that a rug purchase in a local market may not be what you think you are buying.  If you want to have a bit of fun bartering for it and be willing to risk a low dollar purchase then go for it, however be prepared that it may end up in the family pooches kennel after the holiday ends.

If you are buying a rug with your heart and purely for the love of it, still important to consider is the space the rug will live in, the materials it is made of and if it can stand the test of time.  Regardless of your motivation when buying a Persian rug; with your heart and for the love or it or purely as an investment, Persian rugs offer another important buying proposition.

Being made by hand from sustainable, natural animal and vegetable fibers like cotton, wool and silk and traditionally having used natural dyes derived from insects, plants and minerals to dye the fibers, an antique Persian rug can be considered eco-friendly.  How valuable is that?

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