Glossary of Rug Terms #20
Every so often, we write a rug term dictionary post for those wanting to improve their handmade rug vernacular.
Whether you are an expert on decorative rugs or reading about the field for the first time, you will find these terms very informative!
butterfly saddle rugs- Tibetan saddle rugs woven in a trapezoidal shape. The corners of the shorter parallel edge may be rounded. The overall shape suggests a butterfly with spread wings.
cable weft- When warps are offset or depresses, wefts are alternately straight or bending in their passage through the warps. The straight and tight weft is termed a “cable” weft and the bending weft is termed a “sinuous” weft. In some rugs, the cable weft is much thicker than the sinuous weft, thus forcing the warps apart so that the thinner sinuous weft must bend.
cane pattern- a pattern of repeated stripes, each stripe occupied by some repeated motif.
Knot- A tie produced by interlocking one or more cords in such a way that one end of a cord passes through a loop in itself. Technically, the symmetric or Turkish and symmetric or Persian knots in cut pile fabrics are not knots at all (because no tie is produced), but different systems of dicontinuous supplementary weft wrapping.
carpet slave- A decorative weight placed on a rug to keep it flat and prevent it from shifting. Used in India.
colorways- The same design rendered in different color combinations. Used in describing commercial rugs and fabrics.
comb- A weighted comb is used to beat down wefts over rows of knots in weaving pile rugs. An image of a comb is often used as a filler motif in tribal and nomadic rugs.