Tuesday, July 24, 2012

American Sarouk - Painted Beauty

Typical American Sarouk

I am often asked what my own favorite type of rug is. I have several, but the most affordable and utilitarian of my faves is the American Sarouk. They are well made, pretty to look at and they have such an interesting story...

Mottled Dyes
Called “American Sarouk” because they were specifically designed for American tastes and woven in Northwest Iran, these rugs are easily recognizable for their rich red and blue colors and detached floral spray patterns.  They are known for their durability and lustrous feel.  

Original Yarn Color on the Back,
Over-Dyed Yarn Color on the Face
The American Sarouk was produced for export and shipped primarily to New York in the 1920’s and 1930’s by the boatload. They were welcomed for their quality and sheen, but sadly, not for their color.  The rugs were simply too orange.  The remedy for this was to build warehouses where workers would spend their days over-dying or painting the orange-red areas with a more popular burgundy-red.  It was an interesting and effective solution to a costly problem.  Nearly 100 years later, those dyes are still holding fast, but are beginning to show signs of mottling and breaking down. While this should not affect a rug’s value, it may appear unsightly to some.

I can be contacted by email: Lynn@rugadvocate.com


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  2. Thanks for your insight and information, Barry! :)
    I wish I had been on that RugLover tour in December! I would have loved seeing Rug Renovating! I think I'll check my own American Sarouk at home for one of their tags. Wouldn't that be something to find...?

  3. The american sarouk is on of my favorite rugs too Lynn. Thanks for the info.

  4. Is this expensive ?? I want all your designs because they suit to my room. Thank you so much for letting us know this one.

    North Vancouver Rug Cleaning

  5. Outstanding blog Lynn. From a cleaning perspective, be sure to inspect these for dry rot and weak foundation issues when you mark them in, and never, ever fold a Sarouk if you can avoid it. I have some theories about why these rugs seem so prone to this condition, but I'd like to see what the rest of you think.