How to Identify Persian Rugs

How to Identify Persian Rugs

How to Identify Persian Rugs


The intricate art of Persian rug making reflects a craft honed over centuries, with each rug offering a glimpse into a rich cultural heritage. Renowned for their beauty and exceptional craftsmanship, Persian rugs are more than mere decorative items; they are symbolic narratives woven into fabric. This blog delves into the art of identifying these magnificent pieces, a skill that marries aesthetic appreciation with cultural understanding.


The Features of Persian Rugs

Understanding Persian rugs begins with recognizing their distinctive features:

Central Medallion: Often the focal point, the central medallion is a key feature in many Persian rugs. This element is not just decorative; it's laden with symbolism and often sets the tone for the rug's overall design theme​​.


Knots and Weaves: The specific knots and weaves used in Persian rugs, like the Sehna knot combined with a coarse grain weave, contribute significantly to their texture and durability. These techniques have been passed down through generations, with each region developing its unique style​​.


Border Patterns: The borders of Persian rugs are typically elaborate, featuring multiple stripes. The 'Turtle' design is commonly used as the principal border stripe. These borders are not just decorative edges but integral parts of the rug's narrative, framing the central story told in the field​​.


Color and Texture: The color palette in Persian rugs varies, with older pieces often featuring deep rose-pinks and dark blues. Textures range from coarse and rugged in older rugs to fine and silky in newer ones. This variation in color and texture is a testament to the natural dyes and materials used by the weavers​​.


Design Motifs: Persian rugs are known for their diverse design motifs. Each type, such as the Kurdish, Gorevan, or Hamadan, has specific patterns and characteristics. For example, Kurdish rugs often feature the Mina Khani pattern, notable for its artistic and elaborate rendering​​.


Weft and Pile: The weft's treatment and the rug's pile are key identifiers. The way the weft crosses between knots and the pile's quality, whether silky or velvety, can indicate the rug's origin and age​​.

 Pile of Handmade Persian Carpets

Special Types of Persian Carpets

Hamadans: Recognizable by the use of camel's hair in the pile and broad outer edging, Hamadans are among the easiest Persian rugs to identify. They are distinguished by their large proportions and the conspicuous use of plain camel's hair​​.

Kashans: Kashans are renowned for their fineness of grain and closeness of texture. Their characteristic designs, dark rich coloring, and short, velvety nap make them a distinctive type among Persian rugs​​.

Khorassans: Known for their unique weft treatment and specific patterns in the principal border stripe, Khorassans stand out with their elongated 'pear' designs and silky pile​​.

Kermans: The old Kermans are notable for their gorgeous red roses in field and border. Modern Kermans, however, tend to follow different patterns and shades, resembling Kermanshah rugs but distinguishable by their finer weave and superior workmanship​​.


The art of identifying Persian rugs is a journey through history, culture, and artistic expression. Each rug is a testament to the weavers' skill and the rich traditions from which they hail. Whether you are an aficionado or a casual admirer, understanding these nuances enriches your experience and appreciation of these timeless works of art. As you explore the world of Persian rugs, remember that each piece carries with it stories of the past, meticulously crafted into every knot and pattern.

Back to blog