Which type of rug is right for you?
Hand knotted rugs, hand loomed rugs, tufted rugs, woven rugs, hooked rugs, machine made rugs... what's the difference?
To start, the first category is made up of pile rugs, meaning made in a way that creates a “pile” unlike a flat woven fabric. An example of a high pile is a shag rug. Other pile rugs include hand-loomed, hand-hooked, and hand-tufted; but the best of all is a hand-knotted rug. These are created by tying millions of knots by hand, sometimes with up to a thousand knots per square inch. A rug like this is meticulously crafted and takes a weaver an average of two and a half years to create. This method is why hand knotted rugs are durable, cleanable, and can last 100 years.
A hand-tufted or hand-hooked rug uses a hand held device to push thread through the back of a pre-planned grid, and then glue and canvas are applied to seal the bottom. This can make a rug more difficult to clean due to the risk of warping the shape with moisture.
A third category of rugs is a flat weave which involves looping strands around foundation threads. These are often called Durries or Kilims.
Lastly, machine made rugs can be created with absolutely perfect lines and may be very affordable. The downside is they are not one of a kind, may appear machine made, and can be very difficult to repair or clean if damaged. A machine made rug may be an adequate short term choice for budget reasons, but ultimately it will end up in a landfill and need to be replaced. A handmade rug will age beautifully, can actually appreciate in value, and will last for generations becoming a family heirloom.