The Types of Rugs

Most often it is the construction of an area rug that establishes its formality or informality. Rag, hooked and braided rugs are considered informal and casual, perfect for country settings. On the opposite end, Aubusson and Oriental rugs generally appear in formal rooms with period furniture. Needlepoint, Dhurrie and Khilim rugs span the middle. There are always exceptions to rules. If you have a good eye for design and color then you can use area rugs in an eclectic manner, gracefully mixing rug and furniture styles to create a comfortable ambiance.

Here are some of the most popular types of area rugs:

  • Braided – Three fabric strips, with cut edges folded in by hand or machine, are braided then the braids are stitched together in rounds, ovals or straight rows to make these casual reversible rugs.
  • Aubusson – A flat tapestry pile made from a fine yarn, the original French is style is characterized by a central medallion in the field with a wide border repeating some center details.
  • Dhurrie – Hand-woven in India of colourful wool or cotton yarns that cover the cotton warp in a tapestry weave, these reversible rugs have soft colors and varied designs.
  • Khilim – A style of Oriental rug, Khilims are hand-woven in Anatolia, Persia, Turkestan and some Balkan States with heavy, twisted wool yarn in a split tapestry weave that is reversible.
  • Hooked – This rug is made with heavy yarn or a strip of fabric pulled through a mesh by a hook or needle to form a looped pile. Hooked rugs can be hand or machine-made.
  • Oriental – Classically any handmade rug from Turkey eastward to the Borth Pacific Ocean is an Oriental rug. The many styles are named for their regions or the peoples who make them. Machine-made reproductions at popular prices are available in many styles.
  • Rag – Torn strips of fabric with the edges visible or concealed are either woven, crocheted or knitted to make rag rugs. Colors usually run randomly throughout this type of rug and it is reversible.
  • Needlepoint – Tiny diagonal stitches are handmade across the threads of an even-weave canves with wool yarn. An 18th Century art form, needlepoint rugs are often made in floral or geometric patterns.