WHO WE ARE  (page 12 of 15)

Mustafa examining a Star Ushak during the finishing process

Classical Carpets often make their fringes (the exposed warp) extra long, and braids them in a decorative knot, which is something seen in paintings of the older carpets, although not so much in the actual surviving examples, except in the best preserved ones, like the ones in the Transylvanian churches that were hung on the walls rather than used on the floor, because the fringes are often the first things to wear out in a carpet. 

Looking at the older carpets that have served as models for their production, you also see colored extra long kilim ends and extra wide colored selvedges.  They have incorporated all of these details into their carpets, so they are not only well drawn designs, with beautiful vibrant colors, but the underlying structure is also beautifully made, which is something absolutely unique in modern carpets, and a signature of their work. 

Their carpets have a very low pile, 1/8” to 1/4” of an inch, which is typical in both old carpets and in the best made modern rugs. 

Some might ask, isn’t a higher pile more luxurious and longer wearing?  Actually the lower pile carpets are more durable and wear more evenly, as less of the length of the yarn is exposed, since the “end grain” of the knot is actually more durable.  Also contrary to what one might think at first, Chris feels that the low pile is actually more beautiful, as it makes the actual structure of the carpets, the integrity and intelligibility of the individual knots, more clear and coherent.  “Our pile is hand cut, not machine sheared, just like the crafted surface we see in the old rugs.  And our carpets are washed only with mild soap and water, no chemicals or acids of any types are used, so the integrity of the yarn and the wool’s essential lanolin oils are retained.” 

Classical Carpets uses only handspun long staple wool, with a 15%-20% mohair content (from Afyon). And though some may debate this, there is no question in Chris’ mind that this is the best way to make a durable carpet.  The handspun wool is stronger, as it preserves the full length of the wool fibers, and it retains the essential lanolin, giving carpets unparalleled softness and handle.  It also, as described earlier takes the natural dyes in a more beautiful and subtly varied way.

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