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Wool and Silk

About Wool and Silk Pile

Traditionally it is thought that a fine all silk pile rugs are meant for the wall only and an all wool rug is meant for the floor only.  The finest wool rugs for both the floor and the wall often incorporate silk.  Silk is used primarily in two ways in a fine wool rug.

The first way one normally finds silk in a rug is as a “highlight” or “silk touch”.  This will be seen in very high knot count traditional rugs typically.  The silk is used in very small amounts throughout the design to highlight, add an extra dimension, and/or pop to the design.  When looking at the rug in certain light the small silk highlighted areas will shimmer and usually when used like this the touches of silk are white silk making them stick out in the design to a greater degree.

The second way silk is incorporated into a wool rug sometimes is when an entire element of a rug or color is done in silk.  This is seen in both modern as well as traditional rugs.  A design element, for instance a flower or bird, could be entirely carved out in silk within the rug.  This design sometimes will also be depressed or raised (have a higher and lower pile) besides being done in silk so it will stand out even more within the rug.  Besides entire design elements being done in silk certain colors used throughout a rug maybe silk as well.  So a color appearing again and again throughout a rug maybe only done in silk creating and adding contrast throughout the entire rug, instead of just to certain elements.

Whether used as touches or in large swaths, when incorporated into a wool rug, silk can further elevate the originality and complexity already existing within all genuine hand knotted rugs.

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