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Mahal Rugs

Posted on 16 December 2013

Mahal rugs are woven in the Arak district in northwest Persia, they are highly decorative and are among the most desirable of Persian village weavings. They can have all over patterns or a central medallion; traditionally they were made by families in small villages, and have a loose to moderate weave and a thick pile.


These rugs often feature pastel tones such as beige and cream, but also can have earthy reds, greens and even blue tones. The medallion format is more unusual in the Mahal rugs, as they are more likely to have an all over pattern. Some of the most common patterns found here are variations of classic Persian patterns, such as the Mina Khani pattern with its repeated circular flower head pattern, or the Harshang, which is a highly stylised dragon with flower blossom. Floral designs are very popular, especially among the rugs that are made for export for homes in the western world.


Ivory Mahals are another type of Mahal rugs, these are ivory in colour as the name suggests, and they often have dramatic motifs in bold red tones. An ivory Mahal has two popular sizes, which are 9ft by 12ft and 11ft by 14ft, although variations of these sizes do exist. Lattice works of flower heads and vines are a common design of the ivory Mahals.


The best examples of a Mahal rug would feature spacious all over designs with large blossoms and an asymmetric, spacious field. Antique Mahals which are from the 19th and 20th centuries are now considered rare and are sought after by many rug collectors and home owners.


Ziegler & Co are a German company that started in Manchester, England, who commissioned the design and development of Ziegler rugs in the late 19th century. The designs come from Persian and Oriental rugs, especially Mahals, but use a softer, more delicate colour palette. They feature impressive oversized proportions, casual motifs, and have a finer weave, thinner fabric and incredible craftsmanship. These rugs were commissioned for export, designed for the western market to suit any home as the neutral colours complement both modern and traditional furniture. Ziegler rugs have been woven all over the Persian region, and nowadays new Zieglers are commonly woven in Afghanistan.

At Pars Rug Gallery we have many antique, contemporary and Ziegler Mahal rugs in our shop, showrooms and warehouse, please do get in touch or pop in to find out more and have a look.

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