The Different Types of Rug Weaves

The Different Types of Rug Weaves

You may be wondering how rugs are made or how to tell if a rug is hand knotted. When you choose a rug for your home, it’s important to think about such questions. Understanding how a rug is made can help you choose one that is perfect for your lifestyle.
More than any other aspect, the technique that goes into producing a rug determines its overall qualities and aesthetic. Armed with an understanding of what these methods are, and what each one entails for a rug, you can make wise decisions on what to purchase. Here are the different types of rug weaves and making techniques used today.

Hand Tufted Rugs

A hand tufted rug is made by one of the easiest weaving types! Its technique utilizes a tufting gun during the process of construction. This makes creating hand tufted rugs easier than other techniques done solely by hand or which use slower tools. Manufacturers can even produce the highest quality hand tufted rugs fast when compared to the other practices by hand.

The process of hand tufting involves a few simple steps. First, the rugmakers hang and stretch a tufting cloth on a frame. Through the little squares in the cloth’s weave, they then shoot strands of yarn from the back to the front using the tufting gun’s needle, perpendicular to the cloth. Once they finish the whole front surface in this way, they trim the strands to create an even surface.

Skilled artisans may also cut the yarn pieces with duckbill scissors to achieve varying heights of the pile on the rug’s surface. This further complements the designs that they pattern across the tufted rugs. These plush rugs made with the softest rug material will go great as an accent piece in your bedroom and living room!

Hand-tufted rugs do shed a bit, so make sure to vacuum them regularly. To minimize the shedding, try to vacuum your hand tufted rugs once a week!

Hooked Rugs 

Rug hooking is no different than crochet! This technique involves pulling yarn strands from the back of a foundation cloth to the front with a hook. The foundation could be from materials such as linen or monk’s cloth. It is laid horizontally on a frame and used as the rug’s base. The small loops resulting from the hooking remain untouched on the front surface. Hence hooking consists of pushing the hook through the foundation cloth and pulling the strands from back to the front surface of your rug.
Since the result pile is high, these rugs are lumpier than other varieties, endowing designs with quirky rounded but spectacular styles!

Flatweave Rugs 

Flatweave rugs are, as their name suggests, thinly woven rugs with no pile. These rugs are the pattern and foundation in one and because they have no backing, you can use either side when you place them down. Their lack of pile and smoother texture contribute to their durability.

For this technique, you would need a loom machine. Building on a structure of two layers of vertical warp strands, the rugmaker puts the horizontal weft strands between the top and bottom warp layers. The loom has a moveable front section called a beater that the rug maker pulls toward the growing rug to press in each additional line of the weft. This way, there are no large empty spaces in the weave that could harm the rug’s integrity once completed. If a flatweave rug is created manually, it’s called a hand woven rug.

The flatweave rugs are very durable. They are great for high-traffic areas like hallways and outdoors when made with synthetic materials. Unlike hand-tufted rugs, they don’t have backing. Since a flat woven rug is thin, it’s important to use a rug pad under the rug as it will prevent the rug from slipping. Flatweave rugs are adaptable for the popular spaces at your home.

Hand Knotted Rugs

Originating in the Orient, hand-knotting is a method applied in traditional Persian, Tibetan, and Indian rugs and is the most labor-intensive.

How hand knotted rugs are made is more demanding than the other weaving types. Rugmakers first need to create the base by attaching warp yarns to a handloom and weaving weft (horizontal strands) onto the warp (vertical ones). As they put on the wefts, the rug maker will tie small knots around the warp strands one by one. These knots form by threading the horizontal yarn on the left side of the warp yarn and curving it back out on the right side of the warp. From there, the weaver directs the weft back left behind an adjacent warp, then brings the fiber to the front on the left side of that second warp. After, the professional may cut the yarn, and one knot is complete.

Understandably, this complex process is slow and represents the most valuable rug construction. It can take anywhere from months to over years for the artisans to finish a single rug. As a result, the precious hand knotted rugs become a great investment as their value of artistry ever increases over time.

Machine Woven Rugs

Today machine woven rugs permeate the industry and are perhaps the most accessible with their affordable cost. These machine loomed rugs are created with a power loom, they’re produced extremely quickly. Able to loom, weave, hook, and tuft, these machines can produce complete rugs in a fraction of the time. Automated loom machines can create a variety of intricate patterns with pinpoint accuracy through the application of computer-aided design technology.

If you’re looking to buy an area rug for a high-traffic area of your home, such as a playroom, this is a great option. Machine made area rugs generally use synthetic fibers, which make the rug more durable. These rugs can last up to 20 years. Their versatility in material composition can make them easier to maintain and clean compared to more delicate hand-made rugs. A lot of times, you can simply place them in a washing machine when they become dirty! Check out our best seller rugs with various styles and sizes to meet all your interior design needs. 

Frequently Asked Questions About Rug Weaves 

What’s the difference between hand-woven and hand-knotted rugs?

Only hand-woven and hand-knotted rugs can genuinely own the claim of being hand-made. While both rugs are made on a loom, a hand knotted rug has a pile unlike a woven rug and takes much more time to be produced. What would normally constitute the back layer of a hand-knotted rug is the entirety of weft and warp of a hand-woven rug. A hand-knotted rug is made of thousands of knots, each of them intricately knotted into a labor of sophistication. A hand-woven rug like a flatweave will be less detailed though no less beautiful, if you’d love to invest in a budget-friendly durable rug.

Hand tufted vs. hand knotted rugs. Which one should I choose?

Woven vs tufted rugs differ by their weaving types as one is a loomed rug and other is created as yarn is pushed through its backing material. People can confuse them upon first inspection regarding their similar, high pile appearance. Examine the back of the rug to distinguish between them: Tufted area rugs have a white canvas in the back without any signs of wool knots, in contrast to the hand-knotted rugs. The threads in tufted rugs are prone to pulling out since they are not woven into the rug's structure the way hand knotted rugs are. Vacuum periodically to extend your tufted rug’s life.

Although its definition includes “hand”, a tufting gun creates a tufted rug meaning, it can be produced much faster and hence purchased for much less price. If you’d like to invest in a long-lasting and durable rug, you should consider a hand knotted rug; however if your budget is tight and you’d like a soft touch at your house, hand tufted rugs will be the perfect choice!

How do you take care of a handmade rug?

While handmade rugs like knotted or weaved rugs are very durable, their maintenance such as cleaning requires a different process and should be handled by a professional expert only. If you see any threads poking from your handmade rug, do not pull any thread as removing it could damage the rug. Instead, use a pair of scissors to snip the thread. An occasional thread coming out of a hand knotted rug is a common problem.

At Boutique Rugs, we offer high-quality and affordable rugs. We have various styles and sizes to meet all your interior design needs. If you’re in the market for the perfect rugs to adorn your home with, Boutique Rugs has an extensive selection to choose from. Whether that be affordable rugs or more luxurious and traditional designs of handmade products, we have something to suit every individual’s style. We are more than happy to help you choose the perfect rug for your home, so feel free to give us a call with any questions.


Simay Gunes

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Welcome to the Boutique Blog, your destination for the latest in home decor inspiration and rug styling tips. At Boutique Rugs, our passion for quality rugs and design drives us to provide insights and ideas that cater to every taste and budget. From expert advice to the latest trends, join us as we explore the transformative power of rugs in creating spaces that reflect your unique style.


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