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One often gets confused what is the quality of wool and silk that one should look at while purchasing a handknotted rug. Viscose, Artificial silk, bamboo silk are all words that one has probably heard of but does not know what they really mean and how they should affect our purchase decision.

At the end of this blog I’m sure you will know everything you need to know about different qualities of wool and silk.

Silk is sheared from sheep, this fibre is the most associated with rugs for its sheer durability, sustainability and texture. It is considered the finest material for a rug, famously associated with royalty. It is used for intricate detailing, requiring great skill to weave and is most desirable for its aesthetic and legendary softness.Merging it with the durable, unique texture of wool brings character and it is the ideal choice for every space.

Silk usually demands weaving a shorter / denser pile, making the knot count higher than wool. Highly intricate designs are portrayed by the weavers.

The fundamental difference between real and artificial silk is that the real silk is protein-based and not cellulose-based like the rayon used to make artificial silk.

  • Real silk has a higher tensile strength and will last longer. It is less stiff than artificial silk.
  • Bamboo Silk mimics the look and feel of silk and is considered its cost-effective substitute. It also possesses anti-microbial properties, making the home a healthier place with a cost-effective rug but also tends to get dark and dirty over time.
  • Viscose is made from fibres derived from natural sources including wood and other fibrous plants. Viscose has a soft finish but isn’t as luxurious and fine as real silk.

Wool is the most common rug material and its durability extends generations, giving a classic matte look.Mixing the sheer durability, sustainability and unique texture of wool with the sheen and anti-microbial properties of silk make a complete package. Each rug will last long, with a look and feel that everyone enjoys! The good ones will last for decades, becoming family heirlooms, appreciating in price as any good investment does.

The top tier of wool is usually sourced from merino sheep and cashmere goats, and these are worth their steep price. A liquid secreted out of the sheep called Lanolin, called wool fat, lends water repellency and wool flexibility during the process of creating the rug. This prevents your rug from tearing or over-shedding.

Once you understand these nuances, you will have a baseline from which you can choose the best rug from your distributor!

Discover our full range of Modern, Classical and Transitional rugs that have been handcrafted using the best silk and New Zealand wool and have been carefully chosen to be timeless, yet contemporary.