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A Persian Tabriz rug BB4081Antique Rugs and vintage rugs add a dimension of style and history to a room that no other floor covering can match.  Varying in style, based on local tradition, these rugs have been used for thousands of years as a beautiful and practical foundation on which to build a room.  With offerings of antique Persian rugs, antique Oriental rugs, antique Karastan rugs, antique area rugs, vintage rugs, and Moroccan rugs, no matter your preference for color, texture, style or vintage, Doris Leslie Blau offers the widest selection of antique carpets and vintage carpets for sale to fulfill your dreams.  

While some of the technology may have evolved, the basic art of making rugs has not changed for centuries; the same basic techniques and materials are used whether the antique carpet is from Turkey, China, Persia, India, Morocco, or Russia.

Most high-end carpets were made in sophisticated urban settings, in well-established cities where value was placed on fine artistry and the stability of a permanent worksite allowed for use of larger and more sophisticated looms. The more casual tribal rugs were woven by nomadic tribesmen and women whose access was limited to coarser material and smaller, more basic, easily portable looms as opposed to the permanent looms used to make the more refined city rugs.

Antique rugs for the western market were originally made in countries such as India, Persia and Turkey. As the industrial revolution created a new merchant class, antique rugs were a sought-after status symbol demonstrating wealth and good taste. Watch any period film set in the late 19th or early 20th centuries and you will almost certainly see an oriental rug on the floor.

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Vitage Modernist RugsThe political, cultural and artistic movement of Modernism in art, architecture, music, literature and applied arts emerged in the three decades preceding the First World War, making extraordinarily powerful changes to Western society that are still relevant today.

Modernist architects and designers strongly believed that the new technology rendered old Victorian styles obsolete. In rejecting the old decorative motifs, these modernist designers, including designers of modern rugs preferred to emphasize pure geometrical forms, along with the use of new and innovative materials in their modernist carpet design and production. The skyscraper became the archetypal symbol of the era and modernist carpet designs began to emphasize simplicity and clarity of form.

Vintage modernist rugs were created by illustrious designers of the period that include Ivan da Silva Bruhns in France, Edward McKnight Kauffer and Marion Dorn in England and Frank Lloyd Wright in America. It is important to note that modern rugs today are often seen to include the decorative Art Deco rugs or Viennese Art Nouveau rugs, but modernist rugs specifically rejected these decorative principles and emphasized simplicity and utility.

Spider Web RugTibetan rug making is an ancient traditional craft. Tibetan rugs are traditionally made from Tibetan highland sheep’s wool called changpel. Tibetans use rugs for many purposes ranging from flooring, through wall-hangings, and then on to horse saddles.

The process of making Tibetan rugs is unique in the sense that the knotting method is different from that used in oriental and other rug weaving traditions worldwide. With the introduction of modern technology some aspects of the rug making processes have been taken over by machine in many workshops, in particular for yarn spinning and trimming pile after weaving. This is primarily because of cost but also because of skill shortages in the traditional ways. Nevertheless, the finest carpets and rugs are those still made in the old-fashioned way, by hand.

Tibetan rugs are woven on a rectangular, vertical loom. The loom is warped with high-grade cotton from top to bottom. A metal rod is pushed horizontally across the warp and yarn is looped over the rod, then onto the warp to make a pile. When the whole knot is made, a cotton weft is put across to separate the pile, then combined and compacted with a wooden hammer. It is then slit with sharp blades across the metal rod to make a pile. This process is repeated until the rug is made. Tibetan rugs are available with 60 to 200 knots.

Tibetan carpets now woven in Nepal are direct descendants of the pile rug weaving tradition. Tibetan carpets at Doris Leslie Blau offer an array of exclusive yarns, colors and techniques. Hand knotted Tibetan woven carpets begin by dyeing wool and silk yarns and combining the two fibers in a length-wise fashion with both loop and cut pile weaves. Tibetan carpets can also be woven from organic fibers such as Hemp, Nettle, Sunpat and Banana silk.

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Metal Blue Ombre RugFrom the ancient to the modern Doris Leslie Blau weaves a unique web of creativity through our new and custom-designed modernist contemporary rugs. At the forefront of our business is our recognition that a rug or carpet is often the most integral element of any interior, its placement in a room can be likened to the introduction of a painting into a space — it gives the room personality. In light of the importance of floor imagery, Doris Leslie Blau Gallery is committed to assisting our clients in finding the perfect antique or bespoke rug.

Modern rugs can complement interiors that have antique rugs or contemporary rugs. Antique rugs can then be given a modern rug feel to them. 

One of the most famous people to influence modern rugs is William Morris. He considered carpets an art form rather than just a floor covering. His avocation of the  total work of art renewed interest in traditional craftsmanship. His arts and crafts movement became known throughout Europe, and became influential in every country.

Since then each major movement of western art has influenced modern rug designers. If you understand the movement that inspired the design you will appreciate modern rugs even more.

The art nouveau movement was characterized by highly-styled flowing, curvilinear designs, often incorporating floral and other plant-inspired motifs. It went through several changes and became the foundation of the modernist movement. 

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A Vintage Swedish Pile RugRug designs in the period known as the Mid 20th century, or the 1940’s through the 1960’s, are widely accepted as modern designs. Although production of mid-20th century rugs was stylistically anything from very traditional to very modern, what stands out are the designs that speak directly to the movement in design that was ‘design for everyone’, for every home in suburbia. Keep in mind that suburban neighborhoods were developed in the late 1950’s.

Hooked rugs and rag rugs, both American and European, referenced the casual and rural communities while modern designs inspired by the Bauhaus movement and High rise Architecture spoke to both the suburban house wife and the urban dweller.

Many mid-20th century rugs were stylistically inspired by the trends of the times. Think 40’s fashion, 50’s rock and roll and the political landscape of the 60’s that saw a young Jacqueline Kennedy as a style authority while Audrey Hepburn’s collaboration with Givenchy represented minimal elegance.

Wall to wall carpeting was very popular during this time but hand made rugs became the icons of the period representing  a home spun ideology or exotic textile art.

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