Kashan Rug, ca. 1905
Appraised Value: $5,000 - $6,000
IMAGE: 1 of 2
Appraisal Video: (3:23)
Rugs & Textiles, Silver
Grogan & Co.
GUEST: The rug was purchased by my maternal grandparents in the 1920s, and it was used in their entry hall. And when my Aunt Rita was getting married, she was able to choose an oriental rug as her wedding gift, and she chose this one. She then gave it to my husband, Jim, and me in 1975 as a housewarming gift. And we used it as a wall hanging in our first home, but it's been in storage, essentially, for about the last 20 years.
APPRAISER: I find it very interesting for a lot of reasons, but primarily, it's just so well balanced. It's got a classic Persian rug design. And by classic, I mean it goes right back, in its design format, to the rugs from the 1500s, the earliest of the oriental rugs. This rug was made about 1900 to 1910, but it encompasses that early classic design. It has a beautiful central medallion, perfectly centered in the field. It comes down to these great palmettes on either end of it-- one here and one at the bottom end-- which anchor it very nicely and it's on a pretty, rust-colored field that's very evenly designed with these great flower heads. And then it continues on to these corner brackets, or what we call spandrels and all four corners couldn't be more symmetrical. And then it continues on to the primary border, or the main border, where you can see the palmettes come into this corner just absolutely perfectly. Also, the fact that you say you've had it in storage for the last, roughly, 25 years explains why it's in such good condition. Now, this is a rug that was woven in Persia-- what we now call Iran-- in the city of Kashan. And what distinguishes this from a rug that you could buy today for... you know, maybe $800 or $900 or $1,000 is the beauty of the age-- the patina that the wool has, the condition of it. It's an extremely soft wool. The wool from these Kashan carpets actually came from the chest of the sheep, as opposed to the rest of the body, because that was the softest wool, and that's what really... that's really why it has that wonderful luster to it. You should wash it probably every three to five years. Get it washed professionally.
APPRAISER: You could put it on the floor, as long as it doesn't get very much traffic. And the other thing I would avoid is vacuuming it, because that's unnecessary wear, and you want to keep it in this pristine condition.
GUEST: Now, I wanted to ask you about the edges-- both top and bottom.
GUEST: What would you suggest, if anything, in terms of care for this?
APPRAISER: Well, what you can do is called overcasting and that's something the person that cleans it can do for you. And that's literally taking a piece of cotton thread and just securing the ends so it doesn't unravel any more. While we have it turned up, I want to draw your attention to the quality, the number of knots per square inch. It has a remarkably dense knot count, so that makes it very durable and makes the design very pristine and very crisp. That's what you'd expect to see in a high-quality Kashan rug like yours.
GUEST: That's great.
APPRAISER: I think it's worth somewhere in the $5,000-to-$6,000 range.
GUEST: Oh... okay.
APPRAISER: Does that surprise you?
GUEST: Well, I knew that it had some value. I'm pleased to hear that it's in that range.
This website is produced for PBS Online by WGBH Boston. ©1997-2014 WGBH Educational Foundation.
ANTIQUES ROADSHOW is a trademark of the BBC and is produced for PBS by WGBH under license from BBC Worldwide.
WGBH and PBS are not responsible for the content of websites linked to or from ANTIQUES ROADSHOW Online.
PBS is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization.