Wool on wool (wool pile on wool warp and weft):
This is the most traditional type of Anatolian rug. Wool on wool carpet weaving dates back further and utilizes more ———————————————-
traditional design motifs than its counterparts. Because wool cannot be spun extra finely, the knot count is often not as high as seen in a “wool on cotton” or “silk on silk” rug. Wool on wool carpets are more frequently attributed to tribal or nomadic production.
Wool on cotton (wool pile on cotton warp and weft):
This particular combination facilitates a more intricate design pattern than a “wool on wool carpet”, as cotton can be finely spun which allows for a higher knot count. A “wool on cotton” rug is often indicative of a town weaver. Due to their higher pile density, wool on cotton carpets are heavier than wool on wool rugs.
Silk on silk (silk pile on silk warp and weft):
This is the most intricate type of carpet, featuring a very fine weave. Knot counts on some superior quality “silk on silk” rugs can be as high as 28×28 knots/cm2. Knot counts for silk carpets intended for floor coverings should be no greater than 100 knots per square cm, or 10×10 knots/cm2. Carpets woven with a knot count greater than 10×10 knots/cm2 are intended to be used as a wall or pillow tapestry, because their fabric is less resistant to mechanical stress.
Dyes and dyeing
Traditional dyes used for Turkish carpets are obtained from plants, insects and minerals. In 1856, the English chemist William Henry Perkin invented the first aniline dye, mauveine. A variety of other synthetic dyes were invented thereafter. Cheap, readily prepared and easy to use as they were compared to natural dyes, their use is documented in Ushak carpets already by the mid 1860s. The tradition of natural dyeing was recently revived, based on chemical analyses of natural dyes from antique wool samples, and experimental re-creation of dyeing recipes and processes, in the early 1980s.
According to these analyses, natural dyes used in Turkish carpets include:
Red from Madder (Rubia tinctorum) roots,
Yellow from plants, including onion (Allium cepa), several chamomile species (Anthemis, Matricaria chamomilla), and Euphorbia,
Black: Oak apples, Oak acorns, Tanner’s sumach,
Green by double dyeing with Indigo and yellow dye,
Orange by double dyeing with madder red and yellow dye,
Blue: Indigo gained from Indigofera tinctoria.
The dyeing process involves the preparation of the yarn in order to make it susceptible for the proper dyes by immersion in a mordant, immersing the yarn in the dyeing solution, and leaving it to dry exposed to air and sunlight. Some colours, especially dark brown, require iron mordants, which can damage or fade the fabric. This often results in faster pile wear in areas dyed in dark brown colours, and may create a relief effect in antique Turkish carpets.
With modern synthetic dyes, nearly every colour and shade can be obtained so that it is nearly impossible to identify, in a finished carpet, whether natural or artificial dyes were used. Modern carpets can be woven with carefully selected synthetic colours, and provide artistic and utilitarian value.
The Turkish carpet is distinct from carpets of other provenience in that it makes more pronounced use of primary colours. Western Anatolian carpets prefer red and blue colours, whereas Central Anatolian use more red and yellow, with sharp contrasts set in white.
Motifs and Symbolism Back
Running water. Without water, there is no life.
Eight Pointed Star
Sometimes called Solomon’s star or Mohammed’s jewel. This design is extremely old and probably meant spiritual revelation.
The ‘S’ Design
Also called hook. This design is used for strong relationship.
The Five Dots
Five important things for Moslems: 1. Pray five times a day. 2. Do Ramadan. 3. Go to Mecca. 4. Give to the poor. 5. Believe in Mohammed
This design is seen on was that come from Mt. Ararat region, where it is believed that Noah’s Ark laded after the flood. They feature many animal motifs which as well as having religious significance and representative of the natural environment of the weaver.
Symbol of immortality and rebirth
Women with Hands on Hips
Woven to denote fertility, motherhood is not only identified with fertility bu is symbol of scared duties of giving life to children and protecting them.
The most effective precaution against the “eye” which is regarding to be guilty or harmful and fatal looks sign for protection.
Love birds with heads facing each other s a sign of true love.
Nomads weave this magic motif, i.e. the triangle of charm, into a corner of their carpets so that they are completed without any defect or trouble, and not affected by the evil eye. Newly-wed brides also fold their headscarves into a triangle, letting them drop behind, to denote a wish of productivity, fertility and charm.
The ruler of the sky and an image of power and height, the eagle is a symbol of the sky and a healthy life because of its ability to look straight into the sun. The eagle, as the king of the birds, protects the people. An eagle with its head turned to the right symbolizes holiness and protection.
It symbolizes rebirth and fertility, because one grain that falls to the soil produces hundreds of new grains. Women who weave this motif usually express a wish that their crops be plenty and bring abundance to their homes.
It is believed that a goose foot inside a circle or triangle brings luck. Each toe of a goose foot symbolizes one of the rules in divine trio (Holiness, Productivity, Fertility)
It is a symbol of courage and heroism. A woman who weaves this pattern into her carpet wants to say that her man is a strong and courageous person.
A woman weaver often weaves herself, her family or a member of her family into her carpets, such as husband and wife or mother and daughter figures, and this usually represents the weaver’s expectation of a child.
Scorpions are in effect a natural disaster for nomads. They often break into the tent; their sting is very painful and may sometimes be deadly. A scorpion motif woven into a carpet symbolizes the instinct of protection against this animal. In the belief of nomads, a scorpion cannot approach a carpet if there is such a motif in it. The scorpion is also a symbol of “pride and liberty”. Hence a scorpion surrounded by fire commits suicide by stinging itself when it realizes that the circle of fire is insurmountable.
Every tribe places a unique identification mark (stamp) on their carpets and kilims. These stamps not only serve the purpose of strengthening and promoting tribal unity but they are also woven so as to assist in sorting out or identifying the tribal origin of carpets which have been mixed or lost.
It is the most important means of transport for nomads. Reserving a place for them also in carpets denotes blessing for this obedient animal that has carried the goods of the tribe patiently and untiringly for many years.
Tree of Life
It is a big, tall tree which is believed to have grown out of the centre of the world, living for centuries, knowing the secrets of the world, and being close to the universal powers. It is a tree, which is regarded as the stairs of human journey from the underground to the sky, its knots grasping the world and its branches hosting the birds of Paradise. Denoting life and death, the Tree of life is often woven into carpets as an Anatolian motif. The birds of life that will fly away when the time comes. It is believed that after death spirits come to the branches of this tree to envoy endless happiness.
Believed to live in every place, every climate and region, the sacred imaginary animal of the sea, sky, mountain and forest, the Dragon is a symbol of power, force and might for its ability to produce flames from its mouth and its supernatural appearance (multi-headed, multi-legged, multi-tailed, etc.)
This motif is frequently woven with a view to expressing desire for marriage
It is a symbol woven by nomads for protection against wild animals they frequently encounter in nature.
A white rose symbolizes love, a red rose symbolizes passion, and a wild rose symbolizes yearning
It symbolizes the magic power and infinite sleep.
It symbolizes marriage wishes
It is a symbol of sacred, luminous, inextinguishable, endless light of Paradise
It is a symbol of golden post mythology, and symbolizes power, force and might.
It is a symbol of power, force, heath and happiness; it also denotes man’s fertility and the power of giving life and protection.
Numbers like 3,5,7,9 etc. are usually regarded to be sacred. These numbers are represented in the borders of carpets. 3 symbolizes earth, sky, water, holiness, productivity, fertility and so on. 5 means of five fingers of the hand or five prayers in a day. 7 symbolizes seven levels of the sky. Almost all Turkish carpets have such a number of borders that corresponds to one of these figures.
It symbolizes the birds, which bring good and happy news.
It represents happiness of the family
Pomegranate fruit is the fruit of Paradise, regarded as sacred in Anatolia. It is even believed that scattering pomegranate fruit inside the house of in a newly-wed bride will make the marriage long-lasting and productive, as well as making the family rich, with many children who will have long life. It, therefore, symbolizes abundance and fertility.
It is a motif which is related to life and death. It is believed that a person dies with every falling leaf and a person is born with every new leaf. It is also symbolizes the immortality of the spirit.
As a precision instrument symbolizing justice on which sins and good deeds are weighed, it denotes a wish for going to heaven.
The Significance of Color
Many colors used in the rugs are understood to have a meaning often intriguingly at variance with their significance (if any) in the West.
WHITE – is the color of mourning.
RED – burns with passion. It is the color of vibrant life, happiness and success, especially in creative activities.
YELLOW – the color of the sun, indicates plenty, riches and glorious power.
GREEN – as elsewhere, signifies renewal and growth, but, more importantly for Muslims, holiness, as it was the color of Mohammed’s coat, and therefore not suitable to be walked upon and not used by them in rugs for that reason.
BROWN – indicates fruitful fertility.
ORANGE -sometimes interpreted in the West as the color of hatred, is, in reverse, the color associated with sympathetic feelings like devotion and tenderness in the East.