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All About Vegetable Dyed Rugs

There is a common notion among new rug buyers that vegetable dyed rugs are more desirable and are of higher quality than synthetic rugs. Vegetable dyes are considered to be more old world and traditional than the synthetic. Synthetic dyes are thought to be more commercial.

However, vegetable dyes are highly corrosive to the wool, and may cause rugs to wear faster than synthetic dyes. For instance, it is often seen that the vegetable black used in many Turkish and Balouch rugs is so corrosive that the black colored pile will be completely worn away, and other colors will still be thick and fully piled. However, many don’t realize that synthetic dyes were introduced to weaving areas between 1875 and 1890, and by the turn of century were available to many weavers in rural areas.

So that means just because a rug is old, doesn’t necessarily mean that a rug is vegetable dyed. In the past twenty years or so, there has been a large influx in the quantity and variety of new vegetable dyed rugs on the market. The three most commonly used vegetable dyes are indigo, madder, and larkspur. These dyes produce dark navy blue, dark rusty red, and muted gold.

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