Hand made Oriental rugs are hand knotted carpets, following an age old weaving tradition made popular in Persia. Rugs and their designs bear the name of the region in which they were created. Persian rugs, and these in particular which I am writing about in this article, are an exquisite commodity – as they are no longer being imported as a result of the embargo. I have stood atop a lot of Persian handiwork and I am deeply fond of their timeless style, their ‘looks better with age’ look, and, of course the very interesting stories they tell which are often just ‘swept under the rug.’
It is of popular opinion that a well made Persian rug is made of a thick pile, however this is not necessarily so. In fact many are made of a low pile – with rich color combinations, and a high density (in the business of rugs, referred to as asymetric or the Persian knot.) These beautiful rugs are known for their intricate design, colors, and slightly crooked sizes – the crazy dimensions are what make the pieces authentic.
(Another little known fact, and slightly off topic is that there is an area in Los Angeles called “Tehrangeles,” that is the largest such population outside of what used to be Persia – called Persian Square.) This fun fact is relevant in pop culture, as the the patterns, palettes, and weaves in the aforementioned rugs were purposefully linked with native Persian culture and geographic location and this demographic of Californians are so unique, so big, that Bravo went ahead and made them a reality show. The Persian cast of “Shahs of Sunset,” are woven together by the urban area from whence they came – like the rugs, too were made in Persia. They are rich in history and in wealth (as seen on TV) and are naturally pretty, colorful and makes for a fun floor show all around. It’s hard to keep your eyes off any of them, when the lights come on.
Each family of weavers would place elements in the rugs design to record their history and tell a tale. The use of color also represents an emotion. (Red for happiness, orange for devotion, yellow for power, blue for solitude, and so forth.) Each of these colors were carefully chosen to make each region’s Oriental rug design that much more unique. Along with the chosen colorscapes in the rugs, animals also became symbols – an elephant meant power, a stag meant long life and a butterfly meant happiness. It is these elements that make each Oriental rug so unique, so pretty, so desired and now so very expensive. In many cases they are worth far more as they age, and they are worth the price as they last forever.
And in real time, Persian rugs that are designed using the color “green” with a “dog” for a symbol means “the protector of a small paradise.”
Who knew how that story would be woven all these years later in a pretty little package that is The Greene Door.
Photos by MDO & TGD