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Learn About Oriental Area Rug Designs

Updated on September 27, 2013

We can genuinely appreciate the oriental area rug designs by understanding the meanings of motifs. The learning gives us a chance to understand the significant meanings linked to the patterns. Oriental area rug designs and patterns reflect traditions and history. They are used as medium of expressions for orient cultures.


The rug weavers use particular motifs and unique symbols that speak volumes about the history while making the oriental rugs. Universal symbols are used by all the cultures of the world and thoroughly define the nature of humans to share meanings in different forms. The symbols are invaluably preserved in the form of carpets and rugs.


Oriental area rugs belong to the Eastern countries involving China and central Asian regions. Therefore, the designs are heavily influenced by the cultures of each region. The silk route can not be merely termed as a trade route but it served as a way for intercultural exchange and influence. The contemporary rug weavers make inspiring designs that have rich cultural meanings from the past.

Star cross is considered as a basic motif of oriental rugs. Weavers use this motif to create additional design variations in oriental rugs. A star acts as a focal point and combines four triangles at the base. Star motif has deep connections with the ancient cultures and used quite commonly to create wonderful patterns on carpets. Star reflects good faith and luck.

The Herati motif is unique field design that consists of a centered flower inside a diamond surrounded by curved leaves. These leaves are parallel to each side of diamond. Curvilinear designs and geometric designs are commonly found in oriental area rugs. The diamond motif signifies women and two diamonds attached to each other reflect a man and woman.

Gul motif is also a famous motif and commonly used by the Eastern rug weavers. Gul is a Persian word meaning flower. A typical gul design is polygon shaped and represents a rose. Gul represents life and reflects that life is a blend of thorns and colors. It is short and temporary. Similarly different other flower motifs are also used by orient artisan. Peony reflects power, lily is a symbol of spirituality and purity, lotus reflects immortality, tulip is a symbol of prosperity etc.

Orient area rug weavers use different animal and bird motifs to design the rugs. Each motif has different meanings that are highly significant. For example; a parrot represents protection and safety. Peacock is a symbol of immortality. Dog is a symbol of defense and trust. Paradise bird is a symbol of paradise.

Similarly the colors used in the oriental area rug designs are full of meanings. Red color is most often used in oriental area rugs and it reflects beauty, wealth, power and luck. Similarly golden color is a symbol of power and wealth. Black is a symbol of destruction and used only for outlining the motifs and patterns. While color is used in Oriental rug designs and is a symbol of purity.

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