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Types of Rugs

There is a vast range of different types of rugs, Here we explain and show the difference between them all.

Hand Knotted Rugs

Hand Knotted rugs are completely made by hand. They are of high quality and usually made of quality yarns such as wool, silk and cotton. However they are not all the same they come in all difference sizes, density and colours.

You can usually differenticate hand knotted rug from other types of rug by these characteristics. 

– Fringes (Tassels) that extend from the ends of the rug.

– You can see the same pattern on the back of the rug as the front.

– The knots on the back of the rug won’t be perfectly straight.

Back of Persian Tabriz Rug showing high KPI
Fringes are an extention of the foundations
Pattern can be clearly seen and knots not perfectly straight
Pattern the same on both the front and back of rug

These are all different types of Hand Knotted Rugs

Machine Woven Rugs

Machine made rugs are just that, made by machines. The are made in several different countries around the world but Turkey are one of the bigggest producers of machine made rugs. They are usually made using wool or man made fibres (plastic) such as polyester or polypropylene. They can also be made with Viscose fibres.

You can usually differenciate Machine made rugs from other types of rug by these characteristics

– You can see the pattern on the back of the rug but it looks washed out or very faint

– The weave/knots on the back are perfectly straight

– They often don’t have fringes but may also have premade stitched fringes attched or a machine fringe woven through the ends of the rug.

Back of rug faint compared to the front
Fringes woven into the rug with a fringing machine
Back of rug, weave perfectly straight and even
Premade fringes stitched onto the rug

These are all diferent types of Machine made rugs

  • Axminster
  • Shag Pile
  • Belgium
  • Flatweave
  • Turkish
  • Egypt
  • China
  • India

Tufted Rugs

Tufted rugs are made with a tufting gun. A piece of material is stretched across a loom and the yarn is punched through the material. A layer of latex glue is spead over the tufts of yarn to hold them in place and then a backing material is glued in place to cover up the back. A tufted rug can be made quickly compared to a hand knotted rug. They can be made with any type of design from 1 plain colour to copying the intricate patterns of a Persian hand knotted rug.

You can usually differenciate tufted rugs from other types of rugs by these characteristics.

– You can not see the pattern on the back of the rug, it will be cloth material.

– They don’t have fringes (except for Chinese tufted rugs)

Tufted Wool Rug Cleaning
Tufted Rug with simple modern pattern
Tufted Rug material backing and hand-whipped finish
Tufted Wool rug with Persian design pattern
Material Backing of tufted rug with edging tape finish

Flatweave Rugs

Flatweave Rugs can be made by hand and by machine looms. A variety of fibres are used in flatweave rugs from Cotton and wool to Silk and Jute. Flatweave rugs can also have different types of weave styles if hand made.

Poplar Laura Ashely and Louis De Poortere rugs are made on a machine loom and the patterns on the back will be interverted compared to the front of the rug.

You can usually differenciate flatweave rugs from other types of rugs by these characteristics.

– They are completely flat and do not have a pile.

– They are often floppy and can be folded easily

– The pattern is the same or inverted on the back of the rug.

For more information about Flatweave rugs see our Flatweave page.

Laura Ashley Flatweave Rug Cleaning
A popular Laura Ashley Flatweave Rug
Jute Rug Cleaning
A Flatweave rug made with Jute fibres
Flatweave Kilim Rug Cleaners
A hand made Wool Flatweave Rug
Soumak Flatweave Rug Cleaning
A flatweave rug made by hand using Soumak Weave

Home Made Rugs

Home made DIY kit rugs are often small in size and have been made from a latch hook kit. The kit provides the mesh in which the wool yarn is woven around using a latch hook. However home made rugs can be made out of anything from old T-shirts to Ribbons. The majority of home made rugs we see are the DIY latch hook rugs but we do have some very creative customers who have made their own rugs out of rope, rags and scrap material. Often we see home made rugs from customers who’s relative made the rug and was passed down to them, therefore they have great sentimental value and need some TLC.

A rug made from old T-Shirts
Home made wool rug
DIY Latch Hook rug
Restoration of a Latch Hook Rug

Sheepskins and Hides

Hides and Sheepskin rugs come in all shapes and sizes. They can come in 1 piece hides or multiple stitched together or even lots of smaller pieces stitched together to make a large patchwork rug.

Most hides are left natural with there natural colour but some are dyed to be pink, green, brown etc…

Sheepskin and hide rugs need a very specific way of being cleaned or you could run into issues.

To find out more about sheepskin rugs and hides go to our Sheepskin rug page

Cow Hide
Patchwork Hide
Sheepskin Rugs
Patchwork Sheepskin Hide