The Oriental Rug as an Investment
You may have heard, or read, about the concept of buying an Oriental rug as an investment. That does not mean however that an Oriental rug is a replacement for a good Mutual Fund! Instead what is really meant when people talk about the investment value of an Oriental rug they mean that such rugs, when cared for properly, last a long time, negating the need for replacements and can, over time become cherished heirlooms and antiques in the way that other pieces of decor and home furnishings can.
When discussing their value, especially if you intend to insure your ‘investment’ each rug has to be evaluated individually. Here however is a little about the things that a professional will usually take into account when appraising an Oriental rug:
As is the case with any piece of decor or home furnishing, design really does matter when it comes to the perceived value of an Oriental rug. If the colors used in the rug blend harmoniously together and its design – which is known as it’s drawing in the rug trade – is well defined and well executed the rug’s value is likely to increase.
It is worth noting though that design trends can be fickle, and that may affect the value of your rug. For example, in the Seventies yellows and oranges were popular for use in new Oriental rugs and fetched high prices. In the 21st century those colors are no longer very popular for use in home decor, so the value of such a rug, if you base it on design only, will have fallen.
The Quality of Materials Used
Almost all Oriental rugs, old and new, are crafted from wool, silk or cotton. In the case of wool rugs they tend to have the longest lifespan, as wool is such a resilient material but those crafted from handspun, rather than machine spun wool tend to have a higher value.
In the case of silk sometimes a silk rug will have cotton elements that have been woven into the foundation of the rug. This does make them appear to be a little more durable, but a 100% silk rug will usually be valued higher, as the level of skill of the craftsmanship involved in creating them is greater as silk threads are so much finer than cotton.
The Quality of the ‘Dye Job’
Oriental rugs are prized for their beautiful colors and these days you can find Oriental rugs created using both natural (vegetable) dyes and artificially created synthetic dyes. Both can create beautiful looking rugs but it is those that have natural dyes that are usually valued higher. Vegetable dyes are more expensive to create and harder to apply. It was not for nothing that in the history of rug weaving one of the most respected members of a tribal community was the master dyer and those skills are still respected today.
The quality of the weave used to create an Oriental rug can help determine its value as well. An appraiser is usually on the lookout for a weave that is tight and uniform as that not only improves the appearance of the rug but its durability as well.
Once you have a basic idea of the value of your ‘investment’ in an Oriental rug it is up to you to maintain it. Stains will devalue it as well snags and tears. That does not mean however that you will need to store away the rug to maintain its value. Regular vacuuming, prompt stain removal and an annual visit to a company offering Oriental rug cleaning in Rhode Island should be all that is needed to keep your beautiful rug in great shape – and to maintain its value – for many years to come.
Never have your oriental rug steam cleaned. Contact a professional oriental rug cleaning company when it’s time to have your rug cleaned.