How Old Are Most Antique Rugs

Do you ever go antique shopping? Most shops have a broad definition of the term “antique,” and you’ll find items from 20 to 200 years ago. But when you’re shopping for area rugs, the term “antique” is more defined.

Antique area rugs are usually at least 50 years old, and often older. In fact, a 50-year-old rug is considered rather young. However, the style and type of rug you’re looking for will help you determine the appropriate level of antiquity for your collection or home.

Certain styles of rug were only made during a set period. European Art Deco designs were incorporated into rugs from 1925-1950 — still considered antique, but just barely. If you are looking for area rugs that incorporate a wide range of colors, you may have to look for more modern pieces since artificial dyes (not vegetable-based) were only available after the 1920s.

The most collectible antique rugs are at least a century old and are often hung on the wall instead of walked on. While we encourage our customers to “walk on art,” sometimes a piece really does deserve to be displayed on the wall. It allows you to appreciate the piece like the art that it is, and it reduces wear and tear.

When you’re evaluating an antique rug’s value, its condition, quality, uniqueness, age, and beauty are all factors. Of course, how you want to use it and your own personal tastes will help you find the rug perfect for your home or collection.

How Do You Tell An Antique Rug’s Age?

There are several small clues that are used to determine a rug’s age. Often, it is an estimate given in a range, though some rugs have dates woven into them. When present, the numbers translate to a date on the Moslem calendar, so you’ll have to convert it to the Gregorian calendar to get an estimate.

Shady rug outlets will sometimes alter one of the numbers to artificially inflate the age and value. Take a close look at the numbers if they are present to be sure they were originally woven into the rug. If a number has been altered, it’s usually the second one because that adds nearly 100 years to the date.

Experts are able to identify styles, motifs, methods of construction, size, and pile to approximate the age. If you are interested in rugs from a particular era, you will be able to identify some of the common traits by reviewing different examples. Unfortunately, some rug outlets alter their rugs, as we mentioned. If you are ever uncertain about a rug’s authenticity, get a second opinion before you buy it. No one wants to discover their beautiful painting is a forgery, and you wouldn’t want to tricked into making a poor rug investment either.

If you need a second opinion on someone else’s area rugs or if you want to know the value and age of one you already own, we offer rug appraisals at Alyshaan Fine Rugs in Scottsdale.

By Allison Edrington.

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