Carpet Weaving Techniques:
There are two kinds of knots used in handmade rugs. The double knot, also known as the ‘Turkish Knot’ and the single knot, also known as the ‘Persian Knot’. Turkish Knot is a symmetrical knot and in Anatolia it is also known as ‘Ghiordes Knot’. Turkish Knot is used in rugs made in Anatolia, Caucusus, Azerbeijan and North East Iran. Turkish Knot is wrapped around two warp lines symmetrically, pulled out from the middle, tightened and the ends are cut. This way the knot is wrapped around two warp lines forming a solid structure.
Even when they get worn, handmade rugs that use the Turkish knot stay intact keeping the warp and the weft hidden under the knot. This way the colors and the motifs of the rug do not deteriorate for many years. The making of rugs using the Turkish knot takes a longer time compared to others due to the fact that tying the Turkish knot is harder. The Turkish knot does not come off because of its tight grip even if one wants to untie it. Antique Turkish Rugs that are hundreds of years old still preserve their colors and motifs to this day.
The single knot or the ‘Persian Knot’ is wrapped once around the warp string and the other end is left untied. This technique is asymmetrical. Persian Knot is used in rugs that are made in Iran, Central Asia, India and China.
Kilim Weaving Techniques:
Plain weave tapestries are artistic objects that have a unique history and development. In several excavations in Anatolia woven tapestries dating back to 6500 BC were found. This proves that woven tapestries are much older than knotted tapestries.
Plain weave tapestries are woven on horizontal or vertical looms by threading the weft through the warp using different techniques. They do not have a pile due to the fact that they are woven.
Turkish Art of Kilims can be grouped under two main branches; geometric and natural designs. Kilims are the richest and the most colorful tapestries of Turkish weaving tradition. They are woven using various techniques and they are the most recognized type of Turkish tapestry all over the world. Kilims have traditional geometric motifs with nomadic roots.
Flat weave tapestries have never been thought of or produced as a commodity. It has been a part of communities’ everyday lives; made to be used by their makers and embellished with folkloric motifs to emphasize cultural highlights. Each kind of kilim bears symbols and colors important to their makers.
Turkic tribes that used to live in the vast plains of Central Asia continued their weaving tradition after they came to Anatolia. They have woven their symbols and colors significant to them thread by thread onto kilims reflecting the taste, talent and dexterity of Anatolian women for centuries.
Kilim motifs, compositions and colors have been transferred from generation to generation without major changes and they have survived to our day. Traditional kilims with geometric motifs are flat weaves that horizontal threads cover up vertical threads.
When weaving kilims strands of weft in different colors are threaded through strands of warp to form motifs. Strands of weft in different colors bring forth different kilim weaving styles depending on techniques used to weave them.
Sumakh is a reverse weaving technique like jijim and zili. Motifs and patterns are formed by threading weft strands around every two strands of warp. Just like jijim weaving, the surface of sumakh weavings are bulgy. Threads form motifs by wrapping around the warp in areas where the patterns are intended to be formed. Sumakh weavings differ by the way motif threads wrap the warp and whether there are strands of weft in between them or not. Kinds of sumakh weavings are:
Flat Sumakh Weaving With Weft in Between
These weavings are formed by motif threads wrapping strands of warp. Motif threads are woven from top to bottom or bottom to top same in each line by taking on strand of weft between every two motif threads.
Reverse Sumakh Weaving With Weft in Between
Unlike flat weaving, motif threads are wrapped from inside to outside forming a thinner surface. It is not a practical weaving method. Since the look of the weave is ribbed it resembles the look of zili weavings and they are usually used alongside other weaving techniques.