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area rugs

area rug glossary

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Abrash (Arbrush)

Color variations in a field of color on an area rug that may or may not be intentional. Can be the result of using yarn from different dye batches or from using yarn that is thicker in some areas than others (common when using hand spun yarn).


A type of synthetic fiber that is most commonly used in the making of machine–made area rugs. Acrylic fibers are meant to resemble wool at a fraction of the price.

All Over Design

A repeating pattern or a design that covers the entire area rug without the use of a border or central medallion.


A treatment that can be applied to rugs to help reduce the build–up and transfer of static electricity.

Antique Wash

An effect given to area rugs using a chemical washing technique that results in an antique looking rug.


A rug design that involves patterns of flowers and vines which intertwine with each other.


(see Abrash)

Art Deco

A style of interior decor that is common on area rugs used today. Art deco was originally popular from 1925–1940 and features bold, geometric designs.

Art Silk

Art silk stands for artificial silk which can be made of cotton, polyester, or rayon. Art silk rugs are often passed off as real silk though they are much lower quality. Art silk can yellow over time and has no resale value. (See Burn Tests for more.)

Asymmetrical Knot

An asymmetrical knot is one that has yarn knotted around only one of the two warps. A Persian Knot is considered asymmetrical.

Aubusson (Aubuson)

A rug style that began in the 1500's in France as flat–weave rugs often with a floral centerpiece created using pastel colors. Popular styles that evolved from Aubussion patterns including the Antoinette, Maison, and Josephine.

Axminister Loom

The Axminister Loom originated during the industrial revolution in Axminister, England. This machine is used to make rugs that allow the maker to incorporate up to 70 different colors, creating complex designs and patterns.

Axminster Rug

Rugs made by the Axminister Loom which can incorporate up to 70 different colors and complex designs.