Our handknotted rugs are woven completely by hand on a special loom.
Did you know our weavers complete 20 knots per minute with over 288,000 knots that make up an 8x10 rug? This means a single hand-knotted rug can take almost four months with four weavers working on it at a time! Here is an overview of the entire process from start to finish to help you better understand why our heirloom quality oushaks can take so long to create.
The origins of the Oushak (Ushak) rug can be traced to an area south of Istanbul, Turkey known as Uşak. This area was a major center of rug production dating back to the Ottoman Empire. The designs of Oushak rugs are typically based on geometric movements, and are distinctive in both color and pattern, making them the ideal centerpiece for any room.
Today, at Milagro Collective, we continue this tradition to create the perfect one-of-a-kind rug for your home. We partner with incredible manufacturers in both India and Turkey who are known for their artistry and the essence of the rugs has trickled down through generations. Our Oushak weavers use 100% natural wool to hand knot your dream rug. Be assured that no child labor is used.
After sourcing the finest quality New Zealand wool, the fibers are cleaned and sorted. Carding is where the fibers are straightened and teased into individual strands by hand to prepare for spinning. These strands are then handspun into yarn with the aid of a spinning wheel. The yarn is then dyed by hand in small batches using traditional pot dyeing methods. Once the color is perfect, the yarn is then dried in the sun. Solar drying, which can take weeks, ensures the color is evenly distributed throughout the fibers.
Next, the dyed wool is prepared for weaving. Once the wool has dried, it is wound into balls. While the yarn is being prepared, we create a computer-generated file based off our original Milagro Collective design using a software called Galaincha. This acts as a rug map for the weavers, so they know exactly how to recreate the rug pattern and what color each knot should be.
Weaving can finally begin! Hand-knotted rug weaving involves the use of a special loom, which is comprised of a wooden frame. Every individual knot on a hand-knotted rug is woven by hand, row after row, horizontally on the loom. Although this process is time-consuming, it's what makes our rugs heirloom quality and made to last a lifetime. When the weaving is complete, a preliminary hand carving of the rug is produced using scissors.
The rug is finally ready to head to its forever home! Our process ensures that your rug is a completely unique, one-of-a-kind creation. Although this process can be quite lengthy, we are always happy to update you on the status of your rug. Please don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any questions. We’d love to hear from you!
The rug is then cleaned several times on both sides to prepare it for finishing. Any dust or dirt that’s become knotted in the yarn is washed out using a wooden paddle. Washing also helps soften the rugs.
Rugs are then placed on a stretcher, both to dry and to ensure correct sizing. Once this process is complete, the skilled craftsman work on evening out the design details using flat-bladed shears. Then clipping evens out the design details by hand using scissors and any excess threads are removed. The final stage is binding. The edges of the rug are hand-bound using a needle and yarn of colors which match the design.
Meant to last generations and become a family heirloom if used with care.
Unlike machine made rugs, our rugs can withstand heavy foot traffic.