The oriental carpet is an evocative collectors item prized throughout history for their craftsmanship, rich history and a myriad of stories and legends. A useful, functional decorative item providing warmth and comfort, easily transported and the stuff of many a myth, oriental rugs have a rich history as decoration and collectors item.
We likely first saw them in Europe during the middle ages, as they would have been transported by knights returning from the Middle East during the crusades. Their history dates back much further, likely into the pre Islamic period, where they were probably often used as wall coverings, being considered to fine to be utilized underfoot.
Trade routes expanded throughout and after this period for the import of silks, spices and other such luxuries, and so oriental carpets became a sign of affluence and taste n more affluent European households, meaning we now have many examples available to us today.
The mythology regarding many of these creations is as rich and complex as their patterns, from Cleopatra’s introduction to Caesar whilst rolled up in one, to the familiar, incredible magical flying carpet of One Thousand and One Nights.
There are virtually infinite numbers of patterns and designs in oriental carpets (the term describes floor covering originating from a wide geographical area which roughly covers much of Asia from china to Turkey, Cyprus and Iran) with a vast and interesting history behind many of the designs. Rectangular or medallion rugs can be found, with repeating, geometric patterns, brighter jewelled colours or more subdued, muted tones to suit almost any décor. They do require some care and attention, and a specialist cleaner is thoroughly recommended to keep your carpet in tip top condition and ensure its beauty will continue to be enjoyed for many generations to come.