The carpet is, perhaps, the most ancient piece of interior. It has gone from a simple mat, through all sorts of complications of weaves and knots, to the very idea of weaving.
Carpet making as a part of weaving art has being developed since ancient times. The earliest of the remaining carpets, dating back to approximately V century BC, was found in one of the graves in the Altai. Tapestry weaving is even more ancient. A linen shroud woven with multicolored lotus flowers and scarabs was found in the tomb of the Egyptian pharaoh Thutmose IV, dating back to about 1400 BC.
The carpet was created not only as a practical thing, protecting from the cold, but also as a decoration, giving solemnity to the temples and palaces of the rulers.
As carpet-craftsmanship developed, magical, symbolic, well-known and hidden drawings, signs, letters appeared on carpets. Probably the most common patterns were tree of life, the fruit of a pomegranate or almond — a possible “apple” from the tree of knowledge, Phoenix rising from the ashes.
The royal trips were accompanied by huge carts in which they carried several sets of carpets. For example, Countess of Artois, who stayed in various castles for a long time, ordered to cover all the walls of her room with woven and embroidered panels. Carpets were considered a luxurious diplomatic gift, and the theme of the images changed in accordance with fashion. Thus, the fashion for carpets with historical scenes originated in the Burgundian and French courtyards.
Tapestries were known in most European countries already in the 10th — 11th centuries. At the beginning of the XIV century a corporation of weavers was formed in France. They made carpets, woven wallpaper, curtains, canopies for thrones and beds, church curtains and other similar products. Themes for carpets were usually taken from the Old or New Testament, secular literature, mythology, history. Genre, hunting and love scenes, portraits, various allegories (seasons, months, countries of the world, human feelings, etc.) appeared on the tapestries.
The decoration of the walls with tapestries had become an integral part of the interiors in the Baroque, Rococo and Classicism styles. In the XVIII century many prominent painters worked on the tapestry sketches: Antoine Watteau, Nicolas Lancret, and François Boucher even once headed the Royal Tapestry Manufacture.
Carpets were historically more used in the interiors of eastern dwellings, where they played almost the main role.
You know, the carpets are woven from sheep, camel and goat wool, as well as silk, flax and hemp in various combinations depending on the purpose and place of production. Earlier only natural dyes were used: indigo, carmine, madder, saffron, buckthorn juice, etc. In 1856, Englishman William Henry Perkin discovered synthetic aniline dyes, and they quickly spread to the countries of the East.
Persia, according to many experts, is the birthplace of carpet weaving. Here this type of production was developed already in the III century and reached the pinnacle of perfection in the sixteenth century. The masters created huge (up to 30-50 m2) carpets with the most complex and delicate pattern, resembling oriental miniatures.
The quality of the work of Turkmen carpets, thin and durable, with a velvety, low-cut pile, occupy one of the first places in the global carpet hierarchy. Good Turkmen carpets usually have a high density of knots – up to 8 thousand. Ornament and weaving technology date back to at least the 12th — 13th centuries.
Since the end of the XIX century carpets produced by the factory made a serious competition for handicrafts. They were strong enough, fluffy and bright, successfully imitated any Eastern or Western sample.
Carpets in paintings