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Parts of a Rug Design
Parts of a Rug Design |Rug Motifs and Colors
Motifs: Creatures > Plants > Others |Colors

Parts of a Rug Design


The field is the background color of the rug inside of the borders. Often, but not always, there is a medallion (a round, polygonal or oval motif) that sits directly in the middle of the rug. There are usually two borders on a rug: the main border and the guard border. The main border is the widest design around the outside of the rug. Guard borders are usually narrow and lay inside of the main border. Corner brackets, or spandrels, are designs that sometimes fill in the corners of the field.

parts of a rug design

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Rug Motifs and Color Meanings


Rug Motifs

There are popular motif patterns that are used in many different types of rug designs throughout the weaving world. The boteh is a style of weaving that looks much like a European paisley pattern. It is made to represent a pear, a flame or a cone.

rug motif: boteh
An example of the boteh style

 

The herati is a motif that is very curvilinear and is often used in the Victorian decorating style. It originated in Herat, Persia, and features a blossom with four curling leaves.

The gul motif is a squatty polygon design, which is usually arranged into rows in the field. A gul is used to represent an elephant foot.

 

rug motif: gul
An example of a gul motif

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Rug Symbols

Ancient rugs were not only pieces of art, but also of literature since each rug told a story with the symbols weaved into it. Below is a list of some of the commonly used symbols found in rugs and what they mean.



Creatures
ram Ram Horns
(male fertility)
lion Lion
(victory)
deer Deer
(well being)
 
crane Crane
(longevity)
bat Bats
(happiness)
 
fish Fish
(abundance &
prosperity)
dog Dogs
(protector of
noble places)
 
phoenix Phoenix
(Empress)
stag Stag
(long life)
 
dragon Dragon
(Emporer)
duck Duck
(faithful marriage)
 
dove Dove
(peace)
camel Camel
(wealth)
 
tarantula Tarantula
(prevents
bad luck)
crab Crab
(invincible
knowledge)
 
horse Horse
(speed)
elephant Elephant
(power)
 
peacock Peacock
(divine
protection)
butterfly Butterfly
(happiness)
   

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Plants
bamboo
Bamboo
(wealth & honor)
chrysanthemum
Chrysanthemum
(long life)
pomegranate
Pomegranate
(fertility)
 
iris
Iris
(liberty)
cyprus
Cyprus Tree
(immortality)
 
lily
Lily
(purity)
williow
Weeping Willow
(meditation)
 
carnation
Carnation
(wisdom)
tree of life
Tree of Life
(heaven or eternal paradise)
 
lotus
Lotus
(purity)
peony
Peony
(rank & wealth)
   
 
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Other Symbols
star
Star
(happiness)
amulet
Amulets
(rids evil spirits)
yin yang
Yin and Yang
(balance)
 
lamp
Lamp
(faith)
clouds
Cloud
(immortality)
 
comb
Comb
(cleanliness)
 
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Colors
red
Red
(happiness, joy)
orange
Orange
(devotion, piety)
yellow
Yellow
(power, glory)
 
green

Green
(paradise, sacred,
“Prophet’s color”)

blue
Blue
(solitude, truth)
 
black
Black
(destruction)
brown
Brown
(fertility)
 
white
White
(purity, peace, grief)
 
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Read about The History of Rugsnext.
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