What Is the Difference between a Hand-tufted Rug and a Handmade One?

Do you know what makes a valuable rug valuable? Cost is often determined by how desired or sought after an object is, but part of the intrinsic value of a good rug is in how it is made. All rugs are not the same. At one end of the spectrum are basic rugs made to fulfill the basic function of covering up a part of the floor, and at the other are literal works of fiber art, crafted by professionals with years of expertise and from the best materials. So what exactly are the different grades of rugs?

The least valuable type of rug is machine made. Everything on this type of rug is made by machine, there are no individual modifications or touches, and it’s made in multiple quantities, often very large quantities. Machine-made rugs can be made from a number of materials, from synthetic to natural. This does not mean that a machine-made rug can’t be an attractive addition to your home. It simply means that it’s less valuable than other types.

Hand-tufted rugs are more valuable than machine-made rugs because they use the same kinds of high-quality fibers that weavers use for hand-knotted rugs, but they are much quicker to produce. Essentially the weaver prepares a rug backing with a design, and then injects tufts of wool or cotton yarn into it with a tufting gun. Once all of the yarn has been injected, another foundation, called a scrim, is applied with latex glue so that the fibers remain in place. After this the carpet loops are sheared to present a flat and dense appearance that is comfortable to walk on.

Hand-tufted rugs can be beautiful rugs and will last for a decade or more under foot traffic, but they are not individually crafted by one person over time with an eye toward color, texture, or weave. That is what hand-knotted rugs are.

Hand-knotted rugs are rugs in which one weaver individually tied all of the knots – between 50 to 400 knots per square inch – onto warp strings and then cut them to create a one-of-a-kind rug. They can take up to a year to make, but these rugs can last for generations. People who invest in hand-knotted rugs know the quality of the rug they are purchasing, and they are usually eager to respect it.

You can see that if a rug is painstakingly made with this much care and expertise, it is a treasure that should be protected and maintained. This means making sure that it is professionally cleaned on a regular basis and repaired when necessary, including being rebound. If you have questions about how to take care or repair a rug in your home, Bond Products would be happy to help you with that challenge.

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