What does the word “Abrash” Mean?

The word “Abrash” means rainbow / spectrum in Farsi. In Oriental rugs, the term is used to describe the visible variations and changes in color of the rug’s front facing pile.

 

What causes abrashes to appear in the first place?

For the most part, Abrash es are created due to variations in individual batches of dye, or individually dyed batches of yarn. While the colors may look the same at the time that the rug was woven, all human created carpet dye lots vary a little bit. As a result, over the years, each batch will mellow out and fade a little differently. This results in the “Abrash affect” – different striated shades of the same base color.

overdyed vintage and patchwork rug / carpet

Does Abrash mean that the rug is defect or poorly made?

While some people may look at the Abrash coloration and think of them as “imperfections,” in reality, they are not defects at all. Instead, they are the innate characteristic of dye variables that naturally occur when materials are handmade and hand dyed. While some may prefer the more flat and uniform look like those of a machine-made replica, most others will prefer the original and unique distinctions that the hand weaving process brings out. To these individuals, the striated Abrash coloration add a distinctive beauty to the rugs & carpets and make them a far more valuable and treasured work of art. In fact, most of the best connoisseurs and rug collectors value the unique beauty that the Abrash coloration offer.

 

Abrash es are so appreciated that many of today’s manufacturers, who are producing some of the highest quality rugs , often put a great deal of time and energy trying to recreate this distinctive look. While they may accomplish this with varying degrees of success, there is still nothing quite as valuable or beautiful as an original handcrafted antique or semi antique rugs . In fact, collectors of rugs are often particularly drawn to the most creative and warm Abrash found in antique rugs

If you are considering purchasing an antique or oriental rug for your home, it is important to be aware that the markings that you may, at firs,t take to be mistakes, imperfections, repairs and restore, may actually end up being very markings that often give antique rugs  the greatest value.

When buying rugs, inspect them to determine the origin of the color variations. Keep in mind that the striated Abrash es may be part of the intended original design, variations in dye lots, different batches of yarn, a natural result of the aging process, or sun fading.

over dyed carpets under coffee table

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