With so many different kinds of area rugs available on the market today, it’s important to approach rug shopping with a bit of knowledge in your back pocket. Rug weave and construction type is crucial to the rug’s durability and resilience. Each rug type is best suited for a different space, and certain rugs function better than others in high-traffic areas. We’ve compiled a few need to know facts on rug weaves so you can find the best rug construction for your space.
- Hand Knotted Rugs: Hand knotted rugs are produced using techniques that have been passed down from generation to generation. Hand knotted rugs are available in an unlimited amount of colors, patterns, and designs. This style of rug is made on a vertical frame called a hand knotting loom. Columns of threads, called warp threads, are hung from the top of the loom and yarn is wrapped and then knotted around each thread. The threads are hand-cut and tamped to form a tightly knotted weave. Hand knotted rugs are typically more expensive because of all the hard work and craftsmanship that goes into each piece, but are worth the investment because of the rug’s high quality and durability. The rug’s tightly knotted construction makes it ideal for high-traffic area and can stand up to daily rigorous use.
- Hand Tufted Rugs: To produce hand tufted rugs, artisans punch individual yarns through a frame-stretched fabric backing on which a pattern has been drawn. Each step of the process involves hand-finishing by skilled craftsmen and this handiwork often contributes to the rug’s final price tag. Once this process is complete, a second layer of fabric is attached to the back to hold the yarn in place. When finished correctly, hand tufted rugs can withstand daily use and can function well in high-traffic rooms.
- Machine Made Rugs: Machine made rugs are an efficient and price conscious alternative to hand made or hand tufted rugs. Machine or power-loomed rugs are typically crafted from synthetic materials and patterns are constructed by a computer. These rugs can be produced very quickly and will have a low turn around time. Machine made rugs lack the high quality that you’d find with hand made rugs but are generally less expensive, offering a more budget friendly option for your area rugs.
- Braided Rugs: Dating back centuries, for years people have been looking to braided rugs for a durable, no-nonsense floor covering. To make braided rugs, yarns are braided into one continuous rope that’s then laced together. Other strips are sewn on the continue the braiding. Braided rugs are known for their durability and resilience to hold up in high-traffic areas. Braided rugs can be crafted from natural fibers or synthetic materials. Synthetic braided rugs make for great indoor outdoor floor coverings.
- Flat Weave Rugs: Unlike the other rug construction types, flat weave rugs do not have a pile. Instead, to construct flat weave rugs vertical yarns are woven through horizontal yarns forming a flat surface. Though flat woven rugs such as kilims or dhurries are typically produced by hand, these rugs can also be made by a machine.
To learn more about which rug material and size is the best for your space, check out our rug buying guide here.