<div style="display:inline;"> <img height="1" width="1" style="border-style:none;" alt="" src="//googleads.g.doubleclick.net/pagead/viewthroughconversion/1028731116/?value=0&amp;guid=ON&amp;script=0">
6 ISSUES FOR £6 Subscribe to Cheshire Life today click here

What are Oriental rugs?

PUBLISHED: 10:19 12 May 2016 | UPDATED: 16:17 12 May 2016

Frith Indian

Frith Indian


Discover a range of Oriental rugs available at Frith Rugs.

Oriental rugs are many things to many people. To the nomadic tribes and villagers of the Middle East, a rug is not just a floor covering or a wall hanging -but more a way of life. In many cases rugs are used as a form of currency to purchase goods not normally available to them. Rugs made by the nomadic tribes and weavers in the small villages of Iran and Afghanistan depict shapes and designs which are inspired by their lifestyle and environment.

By extreme contrast, large factories employing thousands of weavers in modern day China churn out rug after rug in almost identical form in designs and colours to suit western tastes and fashions.

Somewhere in between we have India and Pakistan with predominantly cottage industry production and generally rugs are woven to order for sale in western countries.

Rugs produced in all these countries are, of course, all Oriental rugs but each one is distinctly identifiable as to country of origin.

Persian rugs

Persian (Iranian) rugs and carpets are the most varied in design from small intricate Tabriz and Qum designs to large ‘open ground’ Kirman or Keshan designs. The various names given to these rugs are actually the villages or areas where the designs or qualities originated from. Even though most are produced with red or dark blue background colours. Persian rugs are the most accommodating when it comes to design and you are sure to find a choice to blend with the existing colour schemes in your home. There are very few schemes that will not be enhanced by the addition of Persian rug.

Frith Persian Frith Persian

Afghan rugs

Afghan rugs and carpets are predominantly red in colour and the very basic designs consist of a number of octagons or ‘elephants footprints’ in dark blue to almost black. Sometimes Afghans are woven in a gold colour using vegetable dyes but more often, the red ones are chemically washed to produce a gold or amber effect. Afghans, whilst being very simple in colour and design, will suit all kinds of décor and can be used most effectively in heavy traffic areas.

Frith Afghan Frith Afghan

Chinese rugs

Chinese rugs and carpets were once the most widely available Orientals in this country. Modern manufacturing methods mean that this once cottage industry has now been transformed into huge, highly organised, factory operations. The rugs are still hand made, either by traditional hand knotting or the modern method of hand tufting, although the latter is always of a poorer quality and can be easily recognised by its distinctive cloth background. Designs and colours are very Western inspired, with floral Aubusson designs predominating. Traditional Peking dragon and scenic scenes are also widely available but are not as popular in this country. Colours range from the very palest pastels to the strongest of primary colours.

Frith Chinese Frith Chinese

Indian rugs

Indian rugs and carpets are also widely available and fall into four main categories. Aubusson Design, Indo Persia, modern and Shaggy . Aubusson Indians are the traditional thick piled rugs with deep carving, similar to Chinese. They are available with both off white and coloured backgrounds and no longer continuously shed their thick pile as their counterparts did 20 to 30 years ago.

Frith Indian Modern Frith Indian Modern

Indo Persian is the terminology given to Indian carpets which have been woven in traditional Persian designs and have a shorter pile, similar to Persian rugs. Finer wools are used in the production of these rugs and the end result is very pleasing and offers excellent value for money.

Indian modern rugs tend to be of a lower quality which means they will be more affordable, allowing the customer to change them more regularly to coincide with current trends. They can be made from 100% wool or have a wool/viscose mix with the latter adding a silky shine effect which will give your rug a high luster.

Shaggy Rugs come in numerous different materials including wool, polyester, polypropylene and a mixture of materials such as wool, polyester and cotton. Shaggy rugs are available in range of patterns or single colour, and some have a range of different textures running through them. One constant with any shaggy rug, is that it will look and feel luxurious thanks to the long pile which ensures a cosy and warm mood in any room

Frith Shaggies Frith Shaggies

Pakistani rugs

Pakistani rugs and carpets are produced using very fine wools creating extremely intricate designs. The Bokhara (elephant’s footprint) and variants of this design, account for the bulk of production, and these rugs and carpets are available in a wide range of both traditional and modern colourings. Weavers in Pakistan also produce Persian designs and these tend to be, in many cases, even finer than original Persians.

Frith Pakistan Frith Pakistan

Choosing the right Oriental rug

So, where do you go to choose your Oriental rug or carpet and what type should you purchase?

The best advice for anyone interested in purchasing an Oriental rug or carpet is only go to reputable shops, stores or specialist warehouses, where you will be offered a large selection of qualities and types. Staff should be knowledgeable and take a keen interest in finding the rug to meet your particular needs rather than just try to sell you something in order to make a sale.

Your choice of an Oriental rug or carpet will depend on many factors such as existing or planned colour scheme, type of room or home – traditional, contemporary or a mixture of both. Many people go to choose a rug with a very fixed idea in mind but, perhaps, that rug is not available- nor even made!

Always have an open mind and take along with you a piece of your fitted carpet, a cushion, a tie back or curtain or even a piece of wallpaper. A rough plan of the area including measurements, is almost as essential to ensure that you make the right decision. Once purchased, your Oriental rug will give you enjoyment for the rest of your life


Telephone 0845 4 900 600

Stores located in Cannock, Warrington and Bodelwyddan in North Wales


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Cheshire visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Cheshire staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Cheshire account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More from Homes & Gardens

Monday, January 8, 2018

This charming property has spectacular views of the Cheshire Plain.

Read more
Sunday, December 3, 2017

This award-winning home in Prestbury is sleek and stylish

Read more
Friday, November 17, 2017

Cheshire-based Crystal Living explain why home-owners have so much choice when it comes to transforming their property.

Read more
Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Character and charm

Read more
Thursday, October 12, 2017

Su Hurrell, from Alsager, launched her mobile art enterprise Ladybird Garden Safari to inspire children, writes Kate Houghton

Read more
Wednesday, October 11, 2017

When it comes to property, the old adage is location, location, location. For many though, size is important. We take a look at what areas give you more for your money in terms of house size.

Read more
Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Founded in 1970 by Julia Jones, this wonderful furniture, lighting and homeware store is now in the sure hands of Julia’s son Rob and daughter Zeta. Here Rob has some advice about how to choose the right sofa for your needs and your space

Read more
Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Pupils at an Alsager primary school show off their award-winning garden. Words and pictures by Linda Viney

Read more
Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Jo Deas’ Wilmslow house is a blend of art gallery and family home, says Kate Houghton, where her two worlds collide and meld to 
create perfect harmony.

Read more
Thursday, September 14, 2017

Tweedmill, in Flint, is a British success story that began in Wales, but found international fans. Kate Houghton reports.

Read more
Thursday, September 7, 2017

Living in a busy urban area needn’t stop you creating a little quiet corner for yourself. Linda Viney visits Didsbury.

Read more
Monday, September 4, 2017

This family home in Chester has a wonderful outlook onto the River Dee

Read more
Thursday, August 3, 2017

Garden setting

Read more
Wednesday, August 2, 2017

The winners of our Garden of the Year competition have a new shed to shelter in when it rains on their glorious garden in Neston
Words and photographs by Linda Viney

Read more
Great British Holidays advert link

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Topics of Interest

Food and Drink Directory

Subscribe or buy a mag today

Cheshire Life Application Link

Local Business Directory

Cheshire's trusted business finder

Job search in your local area

Property Search