What Makes Rugs Beautiful

Rugs are an expression of art. They have been for thousands of years. There are many techniques to rug making but, through the expression of design they become art. How do you determine that a rug is beautiful? To know that, you have to define what beauty means.

When a student is learning to make rugs through a school or a mentor, they are taught to make a connection with the viewer. It is more difficult for some and comes more easily to others. If a successful rug maker possesses passion, this drives the maker to create new patterns and implement new ideas of expression through their rugs. Students that struggle are at a disadvantage. It is the student that creates for the love of creating beautiful rugs that becomes a success in the long run. There have been attempts to find a formula to create a beautiful rug but, there has been no success as it seems to be a raw talent. Personally, I believe that what makes a rug beautiful is the time, effort and story that is put into the rug.

Research has found people are attracted to symmetrical shapes. Subjects also seem to prefer these shapes when they are placed vertically, rather than horizontally or at angles. For example, of symmetry, you can look at tribal rugs that do not follow the formal rules of color combinations or symmetry. It seems that we are drawn to imperfect or flaws in rugs. The simplistically designed rug draws us to love the child-like innocence and elegance within the design. A connection made with the maker demonstrating the perspective of the artist with the humanity of the viewer. We know that human hands touched every fiber of the carpet. We know that human hands picked the plants for the colors and raised the sheep that produced the wool. We see the humanity behind every element in the beautiful rug design.

Persian Isfahan Rug, Rose and Nightingale Design. Size 5.2x7.6
727-Persian Isfahan Rug, Rose and Nightingale Design By Ahmad Zojaji. Size 5.2×7.6.

Rose and Nightingale Design or Golo Bolbol Design Rug By Ahmad Zojaji

Another element of the beautiful rugs, you can connect with an artist who no longer walks the earth, but you know they existed because you can see, touch and feel their work. You can see the threads they chose. The color and design picked by them. Personally, when I see a rug from a producer I am familiar with, the history and story or message are conveyed in the design choices of the maker. A family may produce a rug, then destroy their design so that the rug design is exclusive and unique to their perspective at the time the rug was produced. The rugs show the families hard work and care for this beautiful art form. Through researching various producers and their stories, I have learned that beautiful rug design is a key component to understanding the inspiration for each family’s perspective when producing artful rugs. When learning about a rug’s history, it becomes more interesting, beautiful and intriguing to the viewer.

Considering the two prominent ways beautiful rugs are made, the scientific approach of symmetry and the human approach of simplicity. Which is correct? Both can be beautiful rugs depending on your point of view. Art is subjective and beautiful rugs are no exception. Some people are drawn to a symmetrical pattern, while others prefer tribal patterns. Both techniques create beautiful rugs. It is in the eye of the beholder to decide if the story the rug tells speaks to them. Beautiful rugs have a story to tell not only through pattern but through family history and tradition. The beautiful rug that you choose is beautiful to you. Whether it is the color, pattern or the feel of it, the beautiful rug will speak to your interests.


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