Buyer's guide to Persial Silk Rugs
Although silk is not the first material that comes to mind when mentioning Persian rugs, it's glossy surface combined with rich Middle Eastern patterns creates truly unique and enticing mix. When shopping for either antique or contemporary rug, potential buyer can be overwhelmed by the sheer number of goods available on the market, making it easy to buy a piece of low quality or a fake. Luckily, there are some tips that will make aquiring silk rug much easier even for those who are about to buy their first Persian.
Silk is produced from the cocoon of the silk worm, that are unwound into single fibers, that later are spun into threads. After dyeing, silk's surface becomes glossy, further enhancing beauty of colors traditionally found in Iranian design. Authentic Persian silk rug should have between 200 and 500 knots per square inch and a fringe always made of the same material. Carpets made of artificial silk have not as much knots, with 150 being the most popular number and their fringes are made of cotton. In case of any doubts about the origins of the carpet you want to purchase, do not be afraid to ask your seller some questions. Remember that piece can only be called Persian, if it was made in the countries that were once a part of Persian Empire.
How to see wherever your rug of choice is made of authentic silk? There are few ways of doing that. The simplest way is to rub it's surface vigorously with an open palm. Natural silk will warm up quickly while its artificial counterpart will stay cool to touch. If possible, take a small thread of the carpet and burn it - the smell of burnt hair is an indicator of real silk.