Sunday, October 7, 2012

What are Oriental Rug Trappings?

The word trapping was originally used to describe decorative or utilitarian ornaments for horses such as bridle, saddle, blankets, etc. An early definition from the 1913 edition of Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary states: "Specifically, ornaments to be put on horses."  Other definitions I found included the terms adornments and decorations. 

Oriental rug trappings are functional of decorative items woven by tribal weavers used within the nomadic encampment or in their pastoral lifestyle.  A few examples are saddlebags, grain sacks (balashts) and storage bags which are called torbas.  Additional examples are tent bands, spindle bags, salt bags, and horse covers. 

Bag face: The front of an old or antique saddlebag, sometimes also called bag front.  Many collectors delight in these pieces as each tribal group has their own iconography, colors, wool type, etc.  Here are a few examples, the first two of which are from my private collection.

For more Oriental rug definitions, I invite you to the definitions page on my site.

Oriental Rug Definitions 

                                            Antique Qasqai Saddlebag 

                                                 Antique Kurdish Torba          

Antique Balouch Torba