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Pirot kilims now available at oriental rug specialist Pars Rug Gallery

Posted on 03 October 2014

Oriental rug specialist Pars Rug Gallery is delighted to announce the arrival of a special collection of Pirot kilims dating from the mid 19th Century.

Pirot is a town in the south eastern part of Serbia renowned for its carpet weaving tradition dating back to the middle ages. It was once considered one of the most important rug making centres in the Balkans lying on one of the main thoroughfares from the west to the middle east.

As Arash Karimzadeh, owner of Pars Rug Gallery, says “I really love these rugs as they are particularly stunning and unusual amongst kilims - they are so different in design and have strikingly bold colours. It’s thrilling to have something a little bit different.”

The wool from which these kilims is woven comes from sheep grazing in the Balkan mountain range. When the sheep are sheared the wool is classified for fibre length and then it is washed in boiling water, rinsed, dried and bleached and dyed. The wool is then spun to transform it into the yarn for weaving.

Pirot kilims are extremely finely woven and immediately recognisable through their geometrical designs using repeat patterns in vibrant, contrasting colours. Most common patterns are diamonds with stylized ‘mirab’ – a kind of pattern. There are also figures like birds, lizards, scorpions as well as roses, fruits, wreaths and flowers as well as tree of life and vine motifs.

Pirot kilims have been used as insignia for the Serbian and Yugoslavian royal families in the past and the tradition of carpet weaving has been considered one of the most important handicrafts in Serbia. Revived in 2011 the Pirot kilims are always on display at state ceremonies. Since 2002 they have gained geographical indication status as the French have for their wines.

There are two antique Pirot kilims in the British Museum and several 19th century examples at the Pars Rug Gallery. Come and see us soon!

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