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Can it be restored, or should I just get rid of it?

Updated: Apr 6, 2023

This is a common question we are asked here at the rug studio. I always respond “let me have a look”

If it is a machine made then probably not economical to the value of the piece but new fringes and a clean, always revive any rug.

Pets, moth, cleaning ladies, and red wine provide a continuous flow of work for the studio.

Ascertaining its history, value, traffic level, and rarity all play a factor. I always say there are 3 ways to restore the rug, it’s working out the best way in relationship to the value of the piece.

Low pile and worn out the art is to be sympathetic and retain its age. A hole, is potentially straight forward, just why did the hole happen, tension problems, a chair, or rotten from a plant being constantly watered are often the culprits behind it.

Here I have an 19th Century Borjalou Kazak. Rich in colour due to the good quality natural dyes, low in places and missing the end borders.

Unusual in format as the piece is quite square despite the 2 outer guard borders missing.

The client in this case chose not to ‘over restore’. The brief was to ensure the rug retained its feeling of age, was structurally sound but kept its character.

Restoring the sides and ends immediately brings a worn rug together, like placing a frame around a painting. The 2 fringe ends here were initially secured and not rewarped to replace the borders and kilim as per the original finish 160 years ago.

Matching the colours, texture and spin of the wool and original foundation materials used is imperative. Fleeces around the world have different textures and qualities, sheens or lustre.

The 2 outer selvedge’s were restored in a pale blue figure of 8 as per the original, see snippets seen in the top right-hand corner. Two or more colours to make one is always chosen whether insides or repiling a reweave (hole) to keep the eye moving and the repair fluid as one colour leaves a dead space. The green in the rug shows the quality of the original natural dyes, as had a poor natural yellow been used then this fades to a blue-based green. Then the dark brown corroded areas and the crease at the bottom of the rug were repiled and the bottom right-hand corner rewoven as sympathetically as possible resulting in a rug which can now be enjoyed, used and given to generations to come.

If you have a piece you and you are unsure do I restore or do I get rid, please get in touch for a no obligation consultation and we can share our knowledge and expertise. Contact Us

Rachel Bassill - Director of The Rug Studio

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