These are very high quality carpets, all woven by hand and made of silk and wool. They feature mostly plant designs and the knot density reaches 300-700 thousand knots for a square meter. The pile height is from 5 to 9 milimeters. They come in a very wide range of designs and colors.
The art of weaving began flourishing in India in the sixteenth century under the rule of the Mughal dynasty, which was founded in 1526 by Babura. The dynasty ruled until 1858 until Afgan and Persian conquests as well as colonization by the English contributed to its demise.
The origins of Indian carpet weaving date back to Humajuma (1530-1555) who fled the country following a 1544 Afgan revolt. He took refuge in Persia while staying with the Shah Tahmaspa Sultan. There he learned the value of culture and science. Apparently, according to the legend, before returning to the country in 1553 Humajuma asked the Sultan's permission to take with him designers and masters of his beloved skill of carpet weaving who could help popularize this art in his homeland. Thus, a great tradition was born and continued to be cherished, first by Humajuma's son, Akbar (he founded manufactories in in Agra, Lahore and Fatehpur) as well as other moguls - the paintings depcting precious carpets in the palaces of local maharajas attest to this.
Zigler, Farahan and Bokchara are all handwoven oriental woolen carpets with a density of 200-300 thousand knots per square meter and a relatively low pile height of about 7 milimiters. The characteristic pattern of Bokchara commonly known as "elephant feet" comes in a wide range of colours, most commonly including: burgundy, red, beige and green. Ziglery and Farah in turn have a softer pattern, often large and heavily washed-out - they are often "copies" of earlier Persian carpets. They come in beige, gold, burgundy and bronze.
Gabbeh, which means raw or natural in Persian, are carpets woven from hand-spun wool. They often use the natural colour of yarn, or threads dyed with natural vegetable dyes. These carpets are characterized by a large number of interwoven threads and tall pile. They are soft and flowing, thus nomads very often used them as quilts.
These are just some of the carpets from our wide collection of Gabbeh carpets. We invite you to explore the whole range in our retail stores.
Around the thirteenth century the art of carpet weaving in China started to flourish, albeit not across the whole country, but only in a few regions in the north and west: Ningxia, Manchuria, Shangdong Shanxi, and Inner Mongolia. It was where the influences of nomadic tribes from Central Asia were the most apparent. On the basis of the few testimonies and other historical sources written it is difficult to determine the exact place and of the origin of Chinese carpet weaving. Most likely, the ability to weave reached China the Mongols who in 1279 founded the Juan Dynasty, which reigned in China until 1368. When it comes to hand-weaving carpets they either taught this skill to the local population, or contributed to the increase in production capabilities of local manufactories by bringing craftsmen from the conquered East Turkestan.
Silk is a noble material which since ancient times has been connected in our minds to the Far East. It was discovered, as records tell us, more than five thousand years ago by one of the Chinese empresses. Silk thread emerged in Europe in the late Romanesque period, supplied by caravans which followed the Silk Road - the commercial route running through the desert areas of Asia. Silk is obtained from cocoons of the mulberry silkworm (Bombyx mori) - the silkworms inhabit the cocoons during their transformation from a larvae into a butterfly. When the cocoons are formed, the farmers have to dry them quickly, before pupation. Then they soak them in warm water. Only this way the protective rubbery substances can be removed. Then individual threads are separated and turned into thicker ones (to create carpets stands of six to nine individual threads are used). The high price of this raw material is due to, among other things, the low production capacity: seven kilograms of cocoons produce only one kilogram of pure silk. It is no wonder that silk carpets are among the most sought after. The remarkable tensile durability of silk makes it best suited for the manufacture of bonded fabric, and moreover the properties of silk illuminate colors and confer brilliance of the carpets produced - allowing them to become soft, lightweight, and yet resistant to damage. The carpets are also immune to damage caused by moths and other insects. It is known that silk carpets are very expensive. Centuries ago they were manufactured in areas celebrating the splendor of the Eastern dynasties - Persian Safavids, Indian Mughals, and Turkish Ottomans. In our time Iran achieved the position of the leader in the production of silk carpets. Its famous famous manufaktories are in Qom, Isfahan and Kashan. Conversely, India is still producing carpets in Kashmir and Armistar. Everywhere, supervision over the production of valuable hand-crafted carpets is entrusted to the most experienced masters.
Persian carpets are considered to be the most valuable hand-woven oriental carpets. This opinion is not unfounded, even though Persia reached the pinnacle of the art of weaving later than Turkey or Egypt. Persian carpets have achieved perfection only in the sixteenth century, in times of great sultans of the Shiite Safavid dynasty. Because of the Safavid sultans of the East carpets began to be viewed differently - not only as expensive and luxurious furnishings and symbols of wealth, but also as works of art, expressions of pure beauty and artistic needs. Soon carpets started to be decorated with new elements inspired by the designs of ivory products as well as silver and gold. Over time, the decorative elements of the carpets themselves began appearing on, and thus enriching, other works of art.