Navajo Rugs

Celebrating the Navajo Craft through Navajo Rugs

The patterns within Navajo rugs may have names, but the pattern itself within the Navajo rug does not carry significant meaning. These Southwestern rugs are only authentic when originated from the Navajo nation. The colors are rich and earthy, such as red, brown, black, cream, sky blue, sunset pink, vibrant yellow, and turquoise green.

The patterns wove into a Navajo rug take on names, usually assigned by the artist, but are not symbolic: Storm pattern, Saddle blanket, Raised outline, Granada, Tree of Life, Yei, Two Grey Hills, Crystal, and Twill weaves. Close resemblances to sand paintings and dancers in ceremonial dress are most commonly seen on these handcrafted Navajo rugs. Surprisingly, commercially sold Navajo rugs may hold the name "ceremony" but would not be used in an actual ceremony.

Navajo rugs sold to tourists are not the same as a special Navajo rug crafted for a ceremony. In fact, when these Southwestern rugs were traded during the days of the Old West starting around 1880s, traders pretty much dictated to the makers which patterns were most desirable and expected symmetry from one Navajo rug to the next. Thankfully, this is no longer the case. Navajo rugs carry their own unique designs, even if the rug is sold under a familiar rug name.

The art of weaving Navajo rugs is immensely labor intensive. From raising the sheep to preparing the wool for weaving, the Navajo nation puts a lot of time and effort into inventing and perfecting this talent.

Whereas Navajo rugs were originally used to cover the backs of horses or for home use, a Navajo rug now is frequently hung as an impressive work of art over a mantle or entry. Many galleries throughout the world also hang these impressive Southwestern rugs for thousands to appreciate. This shift is for good reason. The art form represents a shifting culture. And, the cost is slightly high for the average owner. From $800 up to over $4,000, anyone can buy a Navajo rug at Canyon Country Originals ( or

About the Author
Theron Platt is pleased to be a contributer to Find everything you need to know about area rugs here - braided, oriental, natural floorcoverings including sisal rugs and jute, contemporary rugs and more.

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