Monday, September 14, 2020

How Can I Tell if My Rug Has Moths?

 






One of the most common questions we receive is what moth infestation on an Oriental rug looks like.  Sometimes worried clients point to a small speck of dust worried that it could be a sign that their beloved wool rug is under attack by moths.  But more often, it is undeniable when a beautiful wool rug is being devoured by voracious moths.  Sometimes the evidence will be glue like white strings as in the first top photo.  Other times, dark black specks resembling dirt are the obvious evidence.  Regardless of how one can identify a moth infestation, the most important step to take is to isolate the rug and have it professionally cleaned as soon as possible.  Only through a professional rug cleaning can moths be eliminated.   If the rug has a rug pad, that should be discarded and a replacement should be ordered.  The floor beneath the rug should be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected.  Lastly, any wool products in the home should be examined carefully for any signs of moth infestation.  With quick action, a wool rug can be saved and restored for future years of enjoyment.  Any delay just gives hungry moths time to continue their work destroying beautiful wool rugs. --


353 W 48th street, New York, NY 10036

212 300 3348


Thursday, September 10, 2020

Antique Kazakh Rug Restoration

 


Kazakh rugs are among my favorites.  Their bold geometric motifs make such a strong statement in any space, and the muted colors found in antique Kazakhs are rich, warm, and beautiful.  For this reason, I love working on restoring antique Kazakh rugs.  This rug above had some worn sections after a century or so of love and wear.  We first professionally cleaned the rug, and then removed all compromised fibers.  Next, we rebuilt the warp and began reknotting the missing pile and weft.  Restoration projects such as these can take months, but they are well worth it.  They can bring back a beloved piece for another century or so.  And it's an honor to think about the original weaver of the rug and to imagine all that the rug has witnessed in its century of adorning a family's home. 

www.traditionalrugrepair.com

Business Address: 353 W 48th Street New York, NY 10036

Phone: 212 300 3348

Tuesday, August 18, 2020

Persian Rug Restoration - Before and After


In our last post, we shared the photo above of a worn area we were restoring in a beautiful Persian rug.  After professionally cleaning the rug, we extracted all the compromised knotted pile (though most of it had been worn off a long time ago) and removed the damaged warp and weft.  We rebuilt the foundation and started to reknot the missing pile.  Below is a photo of our Persian rug restoration in process.  



Finally, after several days of reknotting, below is the final result of our Persian rug restoration.  The worn area is once again beautiful and blends into the rest of the rug without calling attention to itself - always the goal of a good restoration. --www.traditionalrugrepair.com




Sunday, August 16, 2020

Persian Rug Restoration - Before Photo

 



This beautiful Persian rug had a damaged area that had been worn down over many years most likely through regular wear and tear.  The pile had been almost completely rubbed off and the underlying warp and weft was beginning to come undone.  We first professionally cleaned the Persian rug and extracted all the compromised fibers.  The next step was to rebuild the damaged warp and weft and reknot the missing pile in the manner and style of the original.  In our next post, we will share what our final result looked like. 

Monday, August 10, 2020

How to not store a wool rug.

 


You are planning a renovation.  Or you simply tire of the rug you have had out for a while.  You decide you want to put the rug in storage for a few weeks.  Or simply roll it up or put it in the back of a closet.  You vacuum it and roll it up.  It'll just be a few weeks or months you think.  Maybe you stick some cedar chips or a few mothballs in between the folds or rolls of the rug.  Weeks become moths (and maybe years) and one day you see a moth flying around.  You get this pang in your memory as you quickly calculate how long it's been since you last inspected your rug. Has it been that long?  You go to the closet and pull out the rug.  You open it and see holes where there was once a beautiful motif.  You see white gluey trails where there was nothing but black beautiful wool.  While you were thinking of anything but moths, moths were eating your beautiful wool rug.  This can be prevented by taking a few simple steps before putting a rug into storage.  Most importantly, you must have your rug professionally cleaned before putting it in storage.  Moths will always choose a dirty rug over a clean rug for their meal.  Secondly, it is important that rugs are stored in a well ventilated area.  Closets are among the worst places for storage.  And thirdly, regular inspection is necessary.  If moths are caught early, rugs can be cleaned and saved from costly and unsightly damage.

353 W 48th Street, New York, NY 10036
212 300 3348  

Monday, July 20, 2020

Turkish Kilims


This stunning Turkish cecim is a feast for the senses.  The embroidered motifs give it a beautiful texture that instantly warms a space.  The fabulous range of colors create a lively portrait for a floor or a wall.  I could stare at this cecim for hours (and I have) and still find something new to discover.  It is one of the joys of spending time with beautiful rugs and kilims.  
Cecims can be used in a great variety of ways.  They can, of course, be used as floor coverings similar to other kilims.  They can also be used as wall hangings as their great detail and beauty can rival any painting or other form of art.  Cecims can also be used as a regular textile draped over a sofa or ottoman, covering a table, or a bench.  Caring for cecims is very similar to caring for a kilim or a rug.  If a cecim is used as a floor covering, professional cleaning should be done approximately every two years or so. If it is a wall hanging, professional cleaning does not have to be done with nearly as much frequency.  A good cleaning schedule can extend the life of a beautiful cecim so it can be enjoyed for many, many years.  ---

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

Caring for Moroccan Rugs


Moroccan rugs are so popular now for a very obvious reason - they’re beautiful and their simple yet graphic patterns can be used with nearly any style of decor.  They almost immediately enhance a room’s features and warm even the starkest decor.  
Caring for Moroccan rugs includes regular vacuuming, periodic rotating, and professional cleaning every two years or so.  It is particularly important to have Moroccan rugs regularly cleaned because the pile tends to be longer and can therefore trap more embedded dirt or particles that can eventually grind down the foundation (or worse, harbor moth larvae).  With a regular cleaning schedule, Moroccan rugs can be enjoyed for decades. 
353 West 48th street, New York, NY 10036

Wednesday, June 24, 2020

What Does Moth Damage Look Like in an Oriental Rug



The hot weather brings so much joy to so many of us, especially hungry moths who thrive in hot, humid, and dark environments where there is little cross circulation.  If you store your wool sweaters in a closet or wardrobe, now is a good time to take them out to inspect them.  If you store your rugs in a dark closet, we would recommend an immediate inspection.  Even if you do not store your rug but have it out in the living room, perhaps a section of it has a heavy peace of furniture on it or is under a sofa.  Moths can damage those sections if left undisturbed.  
Many clients reach out when they suspect but are not certain of moth damage.  The photo above shows what advanced moth damage looks like. Moths ate entire little areas of wool pile as a section of the rug was left under furniture undisturbed for an extended period of time.  --www.traditionalrugrepair.com

Monday, June 15, 2020

Summer 2020

We hope that you and your families are healthy and safe during this incredibly challenging time.  As we transition to our newly emerging normal, we remain grateful to those who have helped heal us, support us, and provide for us in the fight against something that has robbed us of so many.  Our indebtedness to them is immeasurable.

Like so many businesses around the world, we have been temporarily closed in an effort to help control the spread of Covid19.  We remain hopeful that after lockdown ends, we will reopen in a way that keeps our customers and our team as safe as possible.  We are currently developing procedures and protocols to that end. 


In the meantime, we will begin weekly blogs to share some past projects and our musings on all things rug related.  We hope those that love textiles as much as we do will enjoy seeing how even the most damaged of rugs or cecims can be brought back to life for generations with just a little care and time.       

Kosker Traditional Rug Repair

353 West 48 Street New York, NY 10036

Saturday, March 7, 2020

Turkish Kilim Restoration - Before and After




This lovely Turkish kilim had several worn areas where the weft had almost completely disappeared. Luckily, the warp was largely intact.  We completed the restoration as shown in the top photo.  We tried to match the colors of the original kilim, and tried to recreate the missing motifs.  It's always a bit of a guessing game, but when a kilim is largely symmetrical we have a general guide.  
The kilim above utilizes a slit weave construction which lends the kilim a lovely look.  We hope the kilim's owners will use their restored kilims for many years to come.

Friday, February 21, 2020

Kilim Restoration - Before



There are some people who are afraid to buy kilims because they feel that they will not be as durable as other types of rugs.  The truth is that with proper care, kilims can last for generations.  Kilims can add a wonderful graphic element to a space and can ground an area with a wide range of colors, textures, and motifs. 
Restoring kilims is a challenge because it is difficult to "hide" any inconsistencies or errors in the reweaving.  But, I personally find kilim restoration to be wonderfully satisfying as the results of a restoration are immediately visible as there is no pile to be cut down.  Therefore, the fruits of a restorer's labors are immediately apparent.  The kilim above had several worn areas, but the warp was mostly intact.  It is a lovely semi antique Turkish kilim with vibrant orange, black, ivory, and pink colors.  In the following posts, we will share more about this recent kilim restoration project.  --www.traditionalrugrepair.com 
                                                     
                                                        Kosker Traditional Rug Repair
                                            353 West 48th street, New York, NY 10036

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Caring for Kilims - Cleaning



Some people think kilims only have geometric motifs, but kilims can be remarkably versatile as the kilim above shows.  Though floral motifs are usually associated with hand knotted Oriental rugs, this beautiful Moldovan kilim has a fantastic floral border and center field.  I find these kinds of kilims almost fun, and can lend a room a very dynamic and vibrant feel.
Caring for kilims is similar as caring for rugs.  It is important that a kilim is regularly vacuumed though without the use of a beater bar.  A kilim should be rotated every six months or so so that any wear or muting by the sun is evenly distributed.  In addition, it is good practice to have a kilim professionally cleaned every two years.  With these minimal steps, a kilim can last just as long as a handknotted rug, which is as long as a few generations.  ---


353 West 48th Street, New York, NY 10036

Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Oushak Rug Repair - After a/k/a Final Result


Pictured above is the final result (or the "after") of our recent Oushak rug repair project.  This is a zoomed in photograph but you can see that we tried to match the light pastel shades of the original Oushak rug.  To review, the photos below show the longer yarns we used to reknot the damaged pile, the reconstructed warp, and the last photo is the "before" of what the damage looked like before we started our Oushak rug repair project.  Please note that the bottom two photos are of the back of the rug while the first photos are of the front of the rug.  --www.traditionalrugrepair.com





Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Oushak Rug Repair - Process


After we professionally cleaned this beautiful Oushak rug, we proceeded to start our repair project.  We always work on handknotted rugs from the back.  As you can see from the photo above, our task was to rebuild the damaged and missing warp.  The warp is what forms, with the weft, the grid like structure on which the knotting can take place.  It is like the back bone of a rug.  The warp of this Oushak rug is cotton which is a very strong material that is often used for the warp and weft of hand knotted rugs.  --
                                        www.traditionalrugrepair.com
                                    Kosker Traditional Rug Repair

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Oushak Rug Repair - Before

I thought it would be a great time to do another series of posts showing the before, during, and after of a recent restoration project we completed.  This Oushak was damaged near the center of the rug.   Some of the wool pile was missing and the warp and weft was damaged.  The before picture above shows the area from the underside of the rug.  It's a lovely Oushak with a beautiful delicate color palette of pinks, ivories, and golds.  Stay tuned for more of this rug restoration progress in coming days.
                                             --www.traditionalrugrepair.com
                                              Kosker Traditional Rug Repair
                                       353 W 48th Street, New York, NY 10036

Monday, January 20, 2020

Which is the Bigger Challenge - Rug Restoration or Kilim Restoration?


I am often asked which is more difficult - hand knotted rug restoration or hand woven kilim restoration.  As with many of these types of questions, the answer is:  it depends.  It is almost impossible to categorically say whether rug restoration or kilim restoration is more difficult, because so much depends on the individual rug or kilim.  A good quality hand knotted Oriental rug will be just as big a challenge to restore or repair as a good quality hand woven kilim.  A unique color yarn in an antique Persian rug will be just as difficult to match as a unique color yarn in an antique kilim.  Each rug repair or restoration and kilim repair or restoration brings with it its unique challenges.  The goal for me professionally is to try to meet the challenge and to enjoy the process. 
353 W 48th Street, New York, NY 10036

Is It a Problem If My Persian Rug Has Uneven Fringes?


Before I continue to the main question addressed in this post, I want to note something about terminology.  Sometimes people refer to all hand knotted rugs as "Persian" rugs even if the rug is Turkish, Chinese, Indian, or even Central American.  When the word Persian is used to describe rugs,  the term is usually meant to refer to a type of construction (namely, that a rug is hand knotted) rather than a place of origin.  But of course, many Persian rugs do indeed come from Iran.  Terminology for rugs is actually quite imprecise so I thought that a small note would be helpful here.  Similarly, the word "Oriental" is still commonly used to describe rugs and other artifacts.  It, like the word Persian, is used to describe hand knotted rugs rather than a place of origin.
Now to address the question asked at the top of this post, namely, is it a problem if your Turkish rug (as the one photographed), Persian, or Oriental rug has uneven fringes?  The answer is: it depends.  Often, weavers will cut the rug off a loom in a somewhat imprecise way leaving a somewhat uneven fringe.  In those instances, an uneven fringe is nothing to worry about.  Other times, a section of the fringed area has been pulled or yanked by a vacuum, pet or something and in those instances it is not a problem unless you note the fringes are starting to come away from the rug.  If that is the case, that means that the fringe is failing and the edge of rug is vulnerable to further damage.  If the fringe is not coming away from the rug but is just a different length, it should not be a problem.  Shorter fringe is only problematic if it fails to protect the edge of the rug.  If the edge of the rug is vulnerable to damage, eventually the pile can start to come undone and rug restoration or rug repair will eventually be needed. 
353 W 48th street, New York, NY 10036

Sunday, January 19, 2020

Shaggy Moroccan Rugs - Moth Damage







There is nothing like stepping onto a warm, shaggy, fabulously textured Moroccan rug on a cold winter day.  Just looking at the long yarns of a gorgeous Moroccan Beni Ourain or other tribal rug is enough to warm up a space and give it wonderful textural depth.  Moroccan rugs often have longer piles which just means that the weaver left the pile yarns longer during the shearing process (which occurs after the knotting is completed).  Allowing for longer yarns is what allows rugs to have that shaggy look that is very much trending right now.  The longer yarns are gorgeous but they do pose a particular risk to the longevity of the rug.  Namely, the longer yarns provide more space for potential moth damage as a vacuuming or brushing will often not reach to the bottom of the pile and therefore allows for undisturbed moth infestation to occur.  A close examination of the photos above show a beautiful Moroccan rug that has been damaged at the base of the pile by moths.  The top photo shows the damaged area from the reverse side.  Because this risk exists, it is highly recommended that owners of beautiful Moroccan rugs take care to regularly vacuum their rugs, regularly inspect their rugs carefully, and have their rugs professionally cleaned every two years.  With these simple preventative measures, these gorgeous long piled Moroccan rugs can last for generations. --www.traditionalrugrepair.com
Address: 353 West 48th Street, New York, NY 10036


Thursday, January 16, 2020

What are those White Dots that have Recently Appeared On My Oriental Rug?



You fall in love with a beautiful hand knotted Oriental rug on a trip or shopping excursion and bring it home and fall in love with it even more.  After several weeks, months, or years, you start noticing little white dots that you could swear were not there before.  Or perhaps you send a beloved wool rug to be professionally cleaned and when it is returned, you notice its pile is beautiful and lustrous once again but there are small white dots that you think were not there before.  In both instances, you question if somehow you didn't notice these white dots before but that they must have been there.  Sometimes you even panic slightly worried that the white dots are some kind of bug or insect that has infested your rug.  You reassure yourself when you stare at the dots and confirm to yourself that they are not moving.  You think.  (Don't worry - they're not moving.).  So what are these white dots that mysteriously appear after some time living with a hand knotted Persian or Oriental rug?  Are they anything to worry about?  The white dots are merely places where the warp strings have been tied when the rug was made.  Sometimes the yarns used to create the warp are not long enough and so therefore the weaver ties yarns or strings together to extend the warp.  Or sometimes a piece of yarn or string breaks during the construction of the warp and weft, and the weaver is forced to tie another piece to extend the newly shortened yarn.  These white dots are nothing more than the place where that knotting and tying has occurred.
So if the white dots were created when the rug was originally made, why do the white dots seem to appear out of nowhere?  The answer is a bit complicated.  Sometimes what happens if that after a period of wear, the knotted pile begins to separate a bit to show the hidden warp and weft (with its white dots).  Alternatively, sometimes weavers "color" in the white dots so that they can blend into the hand knotted pile.  After a professional cleaning, the inks used to color in the white dots can fade away, and therefore the white dots can appear to come out of nowhere.  If this happens with your rug, do not worry.  The white dots are nothing to be afraid of - they indeed are not moving - and they do not indicate that there is anything wrong with the structure of your rug.  If the white dots on your Oriental rug really bother you, contact a restorer who may be able to assist you in disguising them once again.  --www.traditionalrugrepair.com
353 W 48th street, fl 4 New York, NY 10036

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Oriental Rug Restoration - It's All in the Details


What makes for a successful Oriental rug restoration?  There are many elements involved.  First, the right yarns - the right texture and shade will go a long way in making for a seemingly "invisible" restoration that blends into the original.  Second, the proper set up - something that allows for the damaged area of the rug to be stretched out is also important.  Next, a uniform and tight grid to work on (the foundational warp and weft) is critical.  Lastly, a lot of time, patience, and skill.  These last elements are important because a proper restoration is nothing without attention to detail.  Getting the knotting right and following the pattern to recreate the missing motifs is important if the restoration will be successful.  --

                                                     www.traditionalrugrepair.com
                                               Kosker Traditional Rug Repair

Address: 353 W 48th St, FL 4, New York, NY 10036

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

How to Fix Damaged Fringes on a Vintage Persian Rug




Anyone who owns a beautiful vintage rug, or has spent any time in a home with a lovely Persian rug that has been around for a few decades will know that there is nothing quite like having a gorgeous older rug serve as the foundation for a warm living space.  Vintage rugs have just the right amount of muted colors and worn textures that can instantly transform a room.  And as the old adage goes, many times they just don't make them like they used to.  Therefore, in many cases, a vintage rug can be counted on to be of high quality.  Even if a vintage rug has already been around for a few decades, generally it can still withstand another generation or two with just minimal care.  Regular vacuuming and periodic professional cleaning is generally all that is needed.  However, sometimes a vintage rug can start to get damaged - usually around the edges.  Fringed edges especially succumb to aggressive vacuuming or hungry pets or kids who tug at the fringes and eventually can damage them.  The top photo shows a small portion of a fringed edge that had been damaged.  In order to properly restore this damaged area, we reconstructed new fringe and integrated the warp strings into the field of the rug.  The bottom photo shows us in the process of restoring the fringed area.  With any luck, this lovely vintage Persian rug will be able to withstand another few decades of love and wear.  --


Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Moroccan Rug - Removing Stains


Peruse any design blog or magazine and you will find pages and pages of gorgeous white, cream, and ivory Moroccan rugs marked by minimal graphic designs in black and brown.  These gorgeous Beni Ourain rugs, Berber rugs,  and other Moroccan rugs immediately lend spaces a wonderful grounded and textural foundation that complements almost any style of decor.  What is perhaps inevitable, however, is that these beautiful pale rugs will conspicuously show any accidental spill.  As a result, we often get calls to address unfortunate stains on these knotted Moroccan beauties.  The first step is to first professionally clean the rug in its entirety.  We are sometimes asked to just remove a stain, but that is not possible as a water mark will result.  There are some fortunate instances where a regular professional cleaning will remove a stain from a Moroccan rug.  If an additional step is required, we treat the area to minimize the appearance of the stain, sometimes eliminating it altogether.  While there is no guarantee for complete removal (for say, a red wine stain), our stain treatment can generally reduce the appearance of a stain significantly.   The risk of staining these gorgeous rugs, however, should not deter anyone from living and enjoying these rugs in their home.  In my opinion, any stain and imperfection will just add to the history of the rug, making it part of a home all the more. --

Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Professionally Cleaning Moth Infested Rugs




You see your normally still rug moving ever so slightly.  You squint your eyes to make sure you eyes aren't deceiving you.  But no, the rug is moving.  More accurately, something on the rug is moving.  Some things.  Plural.  The feeling of disgust washes over you and you somehow gather yourself together to closely examine what exactly is happening.  You see tiny white caterpillar like things having a feast all over your gorgeous wool rug.  Moths, you think.  Moths, you google.  And sure enough, your suspicions are confirmed.  Moths are eating your rug.  What do you do?  First, don't panic.  This, unfortunately, is not a rare occurrence.  With any luck, you have caught the infestation early on and a simple professional cleaning will eradicate the moths and no significant restoration will be necessary.  More often, you neglected to examine your rug regularly and the moths have had time to eat a few chunks of wool.  You should immediately isolate your rug so that other unaffected rugs or wool textiles are not subjected to the same damage.  Wrap the rug in plastic and thoroughly mop the floor on which the rug lay.  Vacuum all surrounding upholstered furniture (and then empty the vacuum cleaner or change the bag).  A simple solution of vinegar and water is very effective to clean floors.  Next, have your moth damaged rug professionally cleaned as soon as possible.  The moths will continue to eat until the rug is cleaned.  Ask your professional Oriental rug cleaner if they have experience cleaning and restoring moth damaged rugs.  After a thorough professional cleaning, the rug will be ready to be inspected for the full extent of the damage.  Ask your restorer what your options are.  Sometimes a simple repair can suffice, but other times, a full restoration is the only option.  

Thursday, December 19, 2019

Silk Rug Fringe Repair




The silk rug photographed above (which is laying on top of a green wool rug) has some significant damage to its fringes.  This damage was most likely caused by aggressive vacuuming of the fringes over an extended period of time.  The fringes are uneven at this point, and are tearing away from the rug itself.  The binding has come undone and the knotted edge are starting to come undone as well.  Repairing this fringe damage would be much easier (and less costly) to fix at this point than if one waited until the knotted areas would start to come undone (which is imminent).  The first step in this kind of fringe repair is, as always, to professionally clean the rug.  Then, we will cut away all damaged areas, create a uniformed edge, and newly bind the rug along the fringed edge.  This repair should be enough to minimize the risk of further damage.

www.traditionalrugrepair.com

Kosker Traditional Rug Repair

Thursday, December 12, 2019

Turkish Antique Kilim Repair



This gorgeous antique Turkish kilim had several worn areas mostly in its red field.  Restoring this kind of kilim damage is challenging as we must strive to match the red yarns to those of the original as much as possible so as not to call too much attention to the restored areas.  The kilim restoration process is greatly rewarding, however, and the final results can be very beautiful. I find the mechanics of this stage of our work highly calming and restorative -- not just to the kilim but to even myself.  To see the tangible results of one's labors is intensely gratifying, and can be very rare in our fast paced world.  I consider myself very fortunate that I can fill my days with these kind of antique kilim restoration projects.  ---

www.traditionalrugrepair.com
Kosker Traditional Rug Repair