What the knot?

When you have a hand-knotted rug you expect it to be well, knotted. But what does it mean when you start seeing knots pop up through the pile?

Simply put, those knots (and often times they are white, so they will be noticeable when exposed in darker colors) are a very common characteristic of true oriental rugs. They are very common and nothing to worry about. These are part of the foundation yarns that have managed to wiggle their way to the upper surface of the rug.

So why is this happening? Hand knotted rugs are woven onto a foundation of warp (top to bottom) and weft (side to side) yarns. This is often a light or white shade of cotton yarn. Generally, the cotton is sent in shorter lengths, they must be knotted together to achieve the desired length. During the normal weaving process, they often break and need to be re-spliced together and this creates more knots.

Because the knots are generally larger than the typical surrounding yarns, normal wear and tear will force them to the surface. Since the foundation is typically a different color, you will typically notice them right away. When the rug is newer, you more than likely won’t notice them as the pile is generally at full length and hides them.

Important Note: It is very important to never, ever cut these knots in your beautiful oriental rug! Only trained technicians should do this. You could cause a hole to form in the foundation of rug and that could spell disaster for your beautiful rug(s).

Fun Fact: Weavers have some skills to help hide these knots. They can push the knot to the backside of the rug. They could also snip the loose stands shorter in hopes it will stay hidden. Finally, some weavers will actually dye them after weaving is finished to thoroughly hide them. Those are all quite clever!

So, what should I do with these knots? First, as previously mentioned, do not clip them. Let a professional handle that. A professional can do a few things. They may snip the lose threads to hide it. They may weave it through the back or they may dye it to match. You can also always opt to just leave the knots. Many times, people find these to be fun and unique touches to their rugs, making them truly one of a kind.

These are in every hand-woven rug. It is simply how they are made. This does not indicate poor quality or a damaged oriental rug.

Don’t forget to call us for your annual rug cleanings at (916) 348-7018.

From Davis to El Dorado Hills, Folsom, Granite Bay, Lincoln and all points in between. We are here to keep you informed and keep your rugs looking their absolute best! Be sure to check out our before and after gallery to our work.

Call us today to book your cleaning! (916) 348-7018