Design of Hamadan Rug (Rugman)
|Original name||قالی همدان|
|Alternative name(s)||Hamadan Carpet (Mosul Rug)|
|Common designs||Afshan, Herati (Fish)|
|Common colors||Red, Blue, Navy Blue, Begie, Yellow, White, Orange, Cream|
|Dyeing method||Natural, Synthetic|
|Knot type||Symmetrical (Turkish)|
Hamadan carpet or Hamadan rug is a village, city rug that is woven in Hamadan Province, located in west of Iran. These rugs are employed symmetrical knots with cotton foundation and a wool pile. The designs of these rugs are Afshan, Herati and Fish, and the colors are Red, Blue, Navy Blue, Begie, Yellow, White, Orange, Cream.
Hamadan is the capital city of the Hamadan Province, located in western Iran. It is an ancient city that dates back close to IOOO BCE. Rugs and carpets woven in the villages, towns, and cities throughout Hamadan are known worldwide. The carpets of Hamadan are divided into two types, based on quality and weaving technique.
The first type is referred to as the village rug. Village Hamadans are known in the market from the mid-nineteenth century. They have geometric or semigeometric designs in allover, medallion, and Open Field styles. Early weavings were made in wool or cotton foundations with a thick wool pile. By the early twentieth century most villages switched to using a cotton foundation with a wool pile. The Turkish (symmetric) knot is always employed. The Hamadan village type is also called "Mosul" in the trade, because it was previously marketed in the town of Mosul in Iraq. mosuL RUGS made in Hamadan villages each have their own design characteristics, weave qualities, and pile height.
There are hundreds of active weaving sites in Hamadan Province. The most notable villages are Bibikabad, Borchalu, Borujerd, Darjazin, HosseinAbad, Injelas, Kabudar Ahang, Kolyai, Malayer, Mazlaghan, Mishan, Nehavand, Saveh, Tafresh, and Touserkan, as well as the districts of Khamseh and Mehraban. These villages are surrounded by many weaving locations that follow similar designs and coloration and are grouped under the main village name.
Beginning in the twentieth century Hamadan village rugs were marketed abroad, priced competitively with the Caucasian and Anatolian (Turkish) rugs of that era. Village Hamadan rugs were successfully exported in large quantities and continue to be so today.
The designs vary, and include either palmettes with leaves and vines, flower heads with a variety of animals, birds, and figures, Shrub and Vase motifs, and traditional Boteh (paisley) and Herati (fish) motifs. At times, these designs have primitive tribal ornamental motifs woven in the background and borders. Some villages are known to have their own conventional open-field design and center-medallion layouts.
The coloration for the backgrounds is mostly red or dark blue; a small percentage are woven in ivory. In addition to these colors, different shades of blue, brown, camel, gray, orange, and green were used for the borders and design elements.
Hamadan village rug formats range from small bag face rugs to approximately seven feet by five feet; on occasion, room-size carpets are produced. Runners and gallery sizes are woven in a variety of lengths. Old runners with camel hair or camel color fields were made in the villages of the Mehraban district and are often confused with Sarab rugs. After World War II some Hamadan villages expanded the size of their looms in order to weave room-size carpets on a more consistent basis. Hamadan village rugs are generally medium to fine in grade quality. The second Hamadan type is the city-weave carpet. Hamadan city carpets were made after World War I and are named Shahr Boft in Farsi, which means, "city-woven." These carpets have a cotton foundation with a wool pile woven using the Turkish (symmetric) knot. The carpets are made tightly, with a double weft and a high pile. They are durable and heavy. The designs are floral, typically in a medallion style with palmette, leaves, and vines in the field and borders. These high-pile carpets were suitable for the North American market. American carpet dealers named them Kazvin, after a city located sixty miles (96.5 km) from Hamadan, for better marketing purposes. Kazvin was better known for making quality carpets from the early twentieth century until the Depression era. In Europe Shahr Boft Hamadans were called "Alvand," after a well-known local mountain.
In the 1960s the city of Hamadan began to weave French Savonnerie Carpets designs, which were fashionable in the American market. The Hamadan Savonnerie designs were woven in large quantities and in less-expensive qualities. American dealers continued to market these city carpets as Kazvin-made.
Hamadan Shahr Boft carpets usually have red or ivory backgrounds, with a small percentage woven in dark blue. These colors are interchangeable for the borders and medallion. In addition to these colors, blues, gold, greens, grays, orange, and browns were used for the flowers and other design elements. The carpets were woven in standard American sizes, ranging from approximately nine feet by six feet to eighteen feet by twelve feet. Hamadan Shahr Boft carpets are generally medium to good in grade quality. The province of Hamadan has enjoyed world-wide renown for its enormous carpet production beginning in the early twentieth century. The weaving industry there has had a significant effect on the local economy and continues to greatly improve the lifestyle of weavers and their families.
- Moheban, 2015, 222-223
- Abraham Levi Moheban. 2015. The Encyclopedia of Antique Carpets: Twenty-Five Centuries of Weaving. NewYork: Princeton Architectural Press.