A beautiful Persian tribal rug in the Tree of Life design.
Colors! Do you find the colors of the rug to be aesthetically pleasing? Do the colors in the rug give you a pleasant feeling of joy and happiness? If yes, this is a great start.
Quality of the materials. If the rug is wool, as most hand-woven rugs are, is the wool good quality? Good quality wool will not be dry or scratchy to the touch and should be quite resilient. If you push on it, does it spring back? Hand-spun wool from healthy sheep is durable and will last for many years. If the rug is silk, it should glisten like the sun and will be cold to the touch. If "fake silk" often called "art silk" it will be much less expensive and not very tightly knotted. Beware of these "art silk" rugs as they are mercerized cotton and there is no silk in the rug.
Do you like the drawing? The drawing is the design layout of the rug. It can be geometric based or floral or anything in between. Is it too busy? Too flowery? If you love the colors but do not like the design, my advice is to pass on the rug. Do not purchase it. You must like both. Always honor your taste!
Will the size work for your needs? A little bigger or a little smaller should not stop you from making a purchase but if the rug in question is a totally wrong size, time to let it go.
Are you able to try the rug "on an approval basis" which means, you can take the rug home and ensure it looks wonderful in the space you have in mind. All dealers of repute will allow you to do this and some dealers, such as myself, will even ship rugs, on an approval basis.
Do you love it? The more you look at the right rug, the prettier it becomes. Good quality hand-woven rugs with beautiful colors and interesting designs never stop giving. They will never become boring and as time moves forward, you will continue to enjoy your "handwoven work of art" every day of your life.
My last words of advice: Be, very, very careful if you start obsessing on all things rugs. This art form can be very addicting and then you may have to become a rug dealer so you can do this all the time!
For fun, I wrote an article on How to Deal with an Oriental Rug Addiction!
Article: How to Deal With an Oriental Rug Addiction
If you are looking for a beautiful handmade rug, please take a look at my gallery! I work very hard to find exquisite, interesting and wonderful Oriental rugs in tribal designs woven with hand spun wool and plant-based dyes.
Here are a few recent acquisitions for my gallery that I do think are quite lovely.
4 x 5ish Persian Bijar
Fantastic Persian Gabbeh rug, approximately 6 x 8
Small Qashqai rug.
To see more rugs here is my website.
Paradise Orienta Rugs, Inc.
137 No. Main St.
Sebastopol, CA 95472 707-823-3355
Penny Krieger is the owner of Paradise Oriental Rugs, Inc., located in Sebastopol, CA, one hour north of San Francisco. She has a wonderful selection of better quality tribal rugs, a few antique pieces and a large collection of Oriental rug trappings.