This is an Antique Persian Rug Hack everyone needs to know! Not only are antique Persian rugs beautiful and a sound investment, but they have a unique characteristic that makes them quite versatile as well. When you buy one, you really have two rugs, meaning two ways of displaying the rug that look completely different.
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Why do Rugs Have a Light and Dark Side?
Because antique Persian rugs are hand-knotted, they have a light side and a dark side. The rugs are woven on a loom from the bottom to the top, and as the knots are made, the natural twists of the fiber, usually wool, create color variations in the rugs. That means that the rug looks light from one end and darker from the other. The knots reflect light on one side, and they cast shadows on the other side.
This characteristic of an antique Persian rug means that you have options when using it in your décor. You essentially have two rugs in one!
Let me show you with my bathroom vanity rug how rotating between the light and dark sides of an antique Persian rug can change the look of a space:
The Light Side of My Antique Persian Rug
You want to assess which side of the rug to use from the entrance to the room. In the case of my bathroom vanity rug, I see it most often as I walk into the bathroom from my bedroom. If I were using it in a more centrally located space, like a great room, I would have to evaluate how it looks with my décor from all entrances. The only other angle from which I see this rug is from my closet, so I am not overly concerned with that angle since it is just me who sees it from there.
Because the light side of my antique Persian rug picks up the tones of my antique English pine mirror, I chose to display the light side. This side helps balance the color in the space.
The Dark Side of My Antique Persian Rug
If I rotate the rug to the dark side, it becomes the dominate item in the room because of the white walls, white cabinets, and lighter accessories. Now, I could choose to display this side in the fall and winter to warm up the bathroom. If I were to go this direction, though, I would need to bring in some darker colors, with towels, candles, flowers, or lampshades, to balance the space.
Imagining those changes, which side—light or dark—is your favorite?
Sources for Antique Persian Rugs
Do you have an antique Persian rug at home that you can try this simple hack with? If so, tag me in your pictures @inheritedandco. I would love to see this free transformation of your space.
(Speaking of transformation, head to my home tour to see how my bathroom looked when we moved into the house.)
If you do not have an antique Persian rug but now understand the versatility of owning one, below are some sources where you can find one.
- Locally—If you are in the Franklin, Tennessee area, check out Essy’s Rug Gallery.
- Online—From small shops to large retailers, the online vintage rug market is quite extensive. NOTE: As you look at the rug pictures online, you should see a light side and a dark side. If you do not, I would suggest asking the dealer for more photos, so you can fully evaluate the rug before purchasing.
- Rug Pad—Every rug should have a rug pad to prevent slipping, obviously, but also to extend the life of the rug by absorbing the shock of traffic. These are my go-to pads.