Antique Rug-Making Techniques Still Alive Today
The antique rug is so irresistible because much like the hand knit fisherman's sweater or hand tattered lace on the bottom of a family wedding dress is that you just don't see it being made by hand much anymore.
Antique rugs typically fall into two categories: "commercial" oriental rugs and handmade rag rugs. Antique oriental rugs are often still in use today. You won't find that many antique rag rugs in use although machine made rag rugs are always a favorite for area rugs.
Hand made rugs have gone the way of the dressmaking and ice-cream making. You just don't see handmade area rugs anymore.
Be careful when you first venture into the antique world. Many rug makers have perfected the art of aging an handmade rug to make it appear antique. The best way to guard against buying an "antiqued" rug is to stick with rug sources that have good reputations and who have experts that help them decide how old their rugs really are.
That's not to say that you can't find people making rugs today the way they used to in the past. In the middle east and in Asia, oriental rugs are still made with the painstaking effort that puts young girls out to pasture at 15 (their eyes can focus in close enough anymore). And for more recent handmade antique area rug techniques, you can find both living history and specialized craft niches that focus on the art of making a an area rug the same way you would 100 to 200 years ago.
If you really enjoy how these old rugs look but they're out of your price range, consider learning how to make some of the handmade rag rugs yourself. If you enjoy crafts, you might enjoy making braided rugs. Check out your local crafts store or go online to find courses on rug making.
About the Author
Janine Jones is a freelance writer based in Northern Virginia (she likes to call it NoVa). New to the freelance world, Janine used to work as an analyst / programmer for a beltway bandit before deciding to mix being a stay-at-home-mom with a writing career. These days, Janine tries to get a little work done when her two kids (ages 3 and 15 months) are otherwise occupied. Janine is hooked on area rugs of all kinds.