The city of Ardebil is on the border with the Caucasus and Turkey, on the north-western side of Iran. In this city where different cultures and customs have always existed. Ardebil Carpets or Ardebil Rugs come from this city and are one of the famous Persian carpets.
History of Ardebil Carpets
The production of the Ardebil carpets, has specific historical story. It goes back to the time of Turkish domination and the power of the Safavid monarchy that chose the city as the base of its Empire. Ardebil became a center of attraction for the monarchs, an artistically and culturally lively place. It was the era of craftsmanship, manufacturing handmade products, the silk trade and the manufacture of carpets. Today, they represents an important item among Iranian exports. The name Ardebil Carpets is linked to one of the most important carpets in the world. An eternal masterpiece of extraordinary beauty for its manufacturing, design and refined colors. And it is precisely the choice of colors that still characterizes this type of carpet that has undergone, throughout history, influences of heterogeneous cultures.
The Ardebil Carpets, due to their patterns and their colors, are in great demand by the European market. This intense commercialization, although it increases its fame, exposes the Ardebil carpets to the threat of frequent imitations. As a result, the manufacturer is not always distinguished by being high quality. In Addition, there is the consequent risk for the buyer of spending an unsuitable amount to the real value of the product.
Not infrequently, it happens, that the Ardebils are exchanged for Shirvan carpets, given their similarity. Elements that help us in recognizing an Ardebil Carpet, are the colors. That colors show the predominance of beige for the background and pea green and red in the decorations. The edge and the most frames made from wool that has bigger threads and the highest pile compared to the Shirvan.
Colors and Patterns
The use of a hooked knife gives a sense that characterizes the habit of knotting similar to what happens in the processing of Persian carpets. The specimens of the past, typical of the Azerbaijani tradition, have a wool structure, while, other specimens knotted by the shahsavan women, present the typical techniques of nomad tribes. The silk ones are rare and precious.
The characteristics of the Ardebil carpets are cotton or silk warp. few specimens have an extra-fine knotting. But more commonly, we find fine knotting and, in other cases, coarse knotting. In old-fashioned specimens, the edge is flat, otherwise, it is round. The decoration includes a wide border and central frame and, in a few cases, presents floral motifs. There are rugs with predominantly geometric patterns. The recurrent symbolism shows an iconography given by stars with eight or sixteen points, from the number four, from the tree of life, from the horns of ram and talismanic animals.
Most of weavers of Ardebil carpets aim at the commercialization of their production which makes these carpets particularly suitable for entrances and corridors.