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By Roelf Nel

Oriental rugs will add timeless beauty to your home. They coordinate with any décor, and enhance any room, hallway, or entrance. They are also a favourite option when decorating home offices. These rugs are a great choice for high traffic areas because of the intricacies of their designs, which hide wear and tear. The term “oriental” refers to rugs produced on the continent of Asia, such as Persian (from Iran), Indian, Chinese, and Turkish rugs.

Making rugs by hand is an ancient art and the old designs reflect the religious and ethnic structures of the times in the countries or areas of origin. Many of these ancient designs are still produced today, sometimes hand-woven and hand-knotted, other times woven by machine. The most traditional patterns are those with a floral or garden motif, or geometric or curvilinear designs around a central medallion or a central painting-like scene.

Oriental rugs used to be constructed only with such natural fibers as wool, cotton, silk, or goat and camel hair, or blends of these materials.  Now you can find these rugs made with less expensive synthetic materials such as olefin (polypropylene), nylon, polyester, and acrylic. Wool rugs remain the first choice in durable, soft, dirt-and-fire resistant and warm rugs. However, synthetic reproductions make oriental area rugs are more affordable. They come in a variety of colours, sizes, and shapes – round, oval, rectangular, and, of course, the popular runner.

How to Choose Oriental Rugs for Your Home

Decide on how you are going to use each area rug.

  • Will it define furniture groupings or unify all the elements in the room?
  • Is its primary use to protect a floor or a carpet?
  • Is the prime function to add warmth and comfort?

The use of the rug will dictate its size and shape. Keep in mind that the colours should be harmonious with other colours in the room. If the center of the carpet will be visible, medallions or central scenes are good choices. If the center will be fully or partially hidden under a table or other furniture, it is better to go with a repetitive design or an elaborate and interesting border.

Very colourful and busy designs can make an oriental rug the focal point in a room. If the room is already colourful with intricate drapery and upholstery fabric designs, choose simple designs and subtle colours. If you are going to use two different rugs in one room, make sure the colours and patterns blend and complement each other.

Whether you choose a genuine antique oriental wool rug that has been hand woven and hand knotted in Iran, or a  machine woven rug with an oriental design manufactured locally, you will be adding beauty and warmth to your home.

Visit our Pinterest Board  and explore some of the beautiful designs we came across and the elegant use of the rugs.

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Oriental Rugs add Elegance to Room Design