Is it Worth Repairing My Persian Rug? Should I Restore My Oriental Rug?

We get asked these questions at least once a week, if not almost daily.  Often, the people asking either have inherited a beautiful, but worn, Oriental rug, or the people have found a damaged, but lovely and well-priced rug to purchase, or the people asking are just examining a beloved rug that has stood guard in their house for years slowly losing areas of pile and levels of structural integrity.

Answering the question of whether it is prudent to invest money and time repairing and restoring a damaged rug is difficult, as the answer must consider a number of factors.  First, of course, there is the question of what is reasonably feasible.  While it is true that practically any rug can be restored, sometimes a rug is "too far gone."  This is often the case when a rug has been kept in an environment that is too humid or too dry, or the rug has been subject to moth damage for too long.  Second, there is the factor of the monetary element.  Sometimes a fine antique rug will increase in value with a good restoration and therefore a restoration can be seen as prudent investment.  Other times, however, when a decorative rug is very damaged or extensively worn, the time and money it would take to restore might be more than what it would cost to buy a new rug.  Third, there is the element of sentimental value.  This can be underestimated at times, but from personal experience, I know that I have spent countless hours, days, weeks, and months, restoring gorgeous rugs that belonged in my great grandmother's dowry - not because the rugs themselves are of high monetary value, but because their value to my family's own history is immeasurable.  For me, they are as priceless as any possession can be.  They are a testament to a great tradition - and a woven letter from my own ancestors - that I have the privilege of seeing and appreciating every day.  And which I hope to pass on myself one day.