(Posted on 12/07/13)
Some of the more famous names in oriental rugs, in particular Herati and Mir, refer to the design, rather than the place where they were made. These designs may be more closely associated with some weaving groups than others (e.g., Ferahan and Mal-e-mir), and it is not unusual for the names of the design and the weaving group to be interchanged. There is also a growing tendency in the carpet trade to market rugs from certain parts of the world under the name of the weaving group whose design has been used, rather than that of the group who actually made the rug. This is particularly true of items from India and Pakistan, which are often sold under the names of famous Persian or Turkoman weaving groups, and it is sometimes a matter of confusion whether the name Isfahan, for example, refer to a rug made in the Persian town of Isfahan or whether it is an Indian or Pakistani rug composed in a traditional Isfahan scheme. It is extremely important, because of the price and resale differences between items from the various countries, to ask specifically whether the name used refers to the rug's place of origin or its design.