Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Carpet dreams: An Uzbek tradition becomes latest design trend

I became quite the rug enthusiast during my visits to Azerbaijan. I miss the afternoons of sitting in a converted Hammam, listening to Ruslan tell the story of a carpet that he's rolled out while sipping my tea. He would show us anything from an antique silk Sumak from Iran to a modern Killum that was crafted right there in Baku. While most have a flair for the silks, I couldn't help but fall in love with Suzanis.

Suzani rugs are embroidered by hand, and originated in Uzbekistan. Women usually took a piece of material to the tribe elder, and they would hand draw a design on the fabric. The rug was divided into 4-6 different strips and then divided amongst family members. Each strip would vary in color and the patterns were often slightly mismatched. 


They work well in a modern home as a tablecloth, or can be made in to pillows. One day, I hope to make it to Uzbekistan to admire their amazing craftiness. (And hopefully get some Suzanis of my own!)

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