As the value of antique rugs soars, an increasing number of collectors are choosing to hang the rugs from the wall, rather than put them on the floor. Previously, antique rugs, collectively known as “Persian”, were typically used as floor coverings. As the value of antique rugs dated before 1800 has increased, along with Islamic art generally, they are displayed on walls along with fine art.
Although rugs are often labelled as “Persian”, they are more likely to come from Turkey, central Asia or the Caucasus Mountains and of course, Persia. Diverse designs were created as representation of each tribe or village. In 2010, a Kirman “vase” rug dating from the 17th century was sold by Christie’s for £6.2 million, a record breaking price.
Hanging an antique rug from a wall isn’t an easy process. An expert should prepare the rug to protect fabrics from damage. Humidity is a huge concern, as being too high or low can cause damage to the fibres. Antique furniture also has to be restored and treated by a professional to avoid damage.
President of the Claremont Rug Company in California, Jan David Winitz started his business in 1980. At that time, collectors would give antique rugs little thought, merely treating them as coverings for floors. Trends change over the years, with demand of antique art, furnishings and carpets fluctuating. The current trend is to mix the old and new, with antique furniture being used in modern homes. In the UK, reputable antique dealers offer advice for the care of furniture, like antique chests. Lancashire boasts a number of dealers who can show you fine art and furniture, including rugs.
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