Rug Fragments Get New Life

We have accumulated a vast collection of rug fragments at our rug workshop here in San Diego. We keep them not only for use as patches in repairing larger damaged rugs, but also we often turn the fragments into small rugs in their own right. 

Recently, we took several pieces from an old Chinese rug and turned them into small, usable rugs for a client of ours. This is what we began with... (click to enlarge):

These pieces came from a rug that had been in a flood and left wet too long before being brought to us. Much of the rug had rotted. Instead of throwing the rug away, we cut away all of the pieces that could be salvaged and threw the remainder away. Now these fragments (after having been thoroughly cleaned and santized) can see use again. The colors are strong, the pile full, and the look is pleasant.

Here are the "After" shots (click to enlarge):

The sides of the pieces were secured and furnished with new sidecords, and new pre-fabricated fringes were attached to each secured end. Like this:

If you have a rug in your collection that has seen its better day, but has sections of it that are still in good condition, this could be an option. Rather than disposing of the piece, see if it makes sense to cull out the good segments and make smaller throw rugs out of them.

If you would like our opinion on the matter, you can email us at rugcarecentral@gmail.com and we'd be happy to discuss it with you. Please include a photo or two of the rug in question.

Dave W.



Seraband Salvage

Earlier in the year, a client brought us a late 1800's Seraband rug that was in pretty rough shape...

As you can see, the perimeter was pretty gnarled and there was a lot of wear in the field from steady use over the years. Plus, there were areas of dry rot where the sides were in the worst condition. But the design was still visible, and the features striking, so repair options were discussed.

Patching the rug would only really work if a piece of a similar rug (era/structure) could be found. Our scrap collection is extensive but nothing we had came close enough. If the rug were a collectible piece, reweaving could have been considered, but at this point, any remaining value in the piece would be based mostly on appearance. So the decision was made to cut the piece down, add new sidecords as needed, clean the ends up and do some dyeing in the field to make the design pop again.

First, the side borders were removed. This would let us work with the borders separately, finding the best segments to retain, and also treat the field as its own unit as well. Treating each segment separately would also serve to better mask the seams when the work is finished. A straight cut across the entire piece is pretty noticeable, from front and back.

We figured out the best way to cut out the worst of the wear in the field by folding the center over onto itself until the pattern in the field matched up well.

Once the cuts were made to both the field and the side borders, each piece was secured properly, and then the rug was ready to be reassembled. 

Here is a close-up of the corner, after the reassembling was finished. Close inspection will reveal the seams, but they won't be noticeable to a person walking into a room, viewing the rug while standing.

Here's the same corner, from the back side.

Strips of fabric were used to reinforce the seams from the back, since the rug is going to see use again (rather than be displayed on the wall as art). We wanted the piece to be strong.

The rug started out 4'8"x9'6" and ended up 4'8"x8', so it was shortened by a foot and a half. The sides are complete now, the ends secure, the field design touched up, and the rug is ready for use again.

If you have a rug that you feel is worn or damaged beyond hope, there are usually always options. Feel free to contact us at rugcarecentral@gmail.com and we can discuss it.


Turkish Azeri Picture Rugs

A company called Woven Legends has been producing some fascinating newer rugs the past couple decades, having set up shop in different countries, striving to create new rugs using the old methods and local weaving talent. 

Among the rugs they've produced are some Turkish rugs called Azeris which have a rich, unique look, and occasionally feature some interesting design elements. From what I understand, weavers are often given free reign to put whatever they want into the designs, and what results is often the weaving equivalent of the old phrase "write what you know". Elements of daily life may feature prominently.

A good example of this came through our shop recently.

We call this The Kitchen Rug. As you can see, the weaver has woven numerous kitchen implements into it: pots, pans, tea kettles, utensils, spice bottles... even a lady to oversee it all! If that wasn't unique enough, the heart border is another interesting touch.

Here are a couple close-ups - you can click them to see them better.

And here are a few more examples of designs from these Azeris that have come through the shop over the past few years... again, click to enlarge.


A Recent Visitor

This wonderfully unique pictoral Chinese rug was in our shop recently. I've seen many of these types of rugs before (having grown up around rugs), but have yet to see one quite like this one. We were granted permission to take and post a few pictures up here, since it is such a visually interesting piece. It is not for sale.

Click the pictures to see close-ups.

The borders are full of wonderful touches...

Here is a close-up of the plaza area before the palace gates.


And here are some close-ups of the buildings...


American Indian Reweave: Lesley Torres

Our resident American Indian Restorer Lesley Torres always has a steady stream of interesting projects going. In the following video, she displys her current reweaving project.

The client that owns this particular piece received a group of American Indian rugs as an inheritance from her grandfather, and is currently having Lesley restore them, one at a time, so they can be displayed/used again, in his honor.

Once the restoration is complete, I will post some "after" photos, so be sure to check back.



Here are some "after" photos of the rug (click to enlarge):

If you own an American Indian carpet and it is in need to repair/restoration, you can contact Lesley by calling San Diego Rug Cleaning Co. directly at (858) 566-3833, and we can give you more information.