Sunday, July 10, 2016

Pet Urine Stain on Rug

In the vast majority of cases, pets and Oriental rugs can coexist quite peacefully adding beauty and warmth to a home.  There are occasions, however, when an unfortunate pet accident can damage an Oriental rug.  Usually, this happens when a pet is either very young or very old.  Pet urine can threaten the color fastness of the dyes in a handmade rug so attending to any accidents is imperative.  When you have pet urine accidents, it is important to blot the spot immediately with a damp white towel (to avoid any color transfer) and have the rug professionally cleaned as quickly as possible.  If proper attention is paid quickly, stains can be averted (and any associated bad odor can be avoided as well).   If pet urine is allowed to settle for an extended period of time, any stains will be more difficult to remove although it is quite possible to ameliorate the stain if not remove it altogether.  It is much easier to avoid the stain from setting in the first place which is why we recommend immediate attention to any pet urine accidents.  --

Undoing an Old Repair - Afghan Rug Restoration Project Final Result

After many hours of weaving and knotting, we completed our Afghan rug restoration project.  Pictured above is the result.  You will note from the final result picture (as well as from our in progress pictures) that the restoration is integrated into the original structure of the rug thereby making it both more aesthetically pleasing and significantly more durable.  With time, the very slight variation in the red yarns should appear even more like the original rug once the rug is exposed to some sunlight.  The photos below show the original patch before repair.

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Undoing an old Repair - Afghan Rug Restoration Project In Progress

As is almost always the case, we first professionally cleaned the rug before we began our latest Afghan rug restoration project.  We then extracted the old patch so that we could restore the area properly.  Next, we carefully reconstructed the warp (the white vertical strands in the photo below).

Subsequently, we reconstructed the weft (the brown horizontal yarns).  Once the warp and weft were reconstructed, they formed a grid-like structure upon which we then reknotted the pile.  Below is a photo of the weft reconstruction in progress.

The photo below illustrates the benefits of this kind of restoration.  The warp and weft are not superficially attached to the rug; rather, they are integrated into the structure of the original rug making this kind of restoration both more aesthetically pleasing, but also more long-lasting.  Indeed, absent any extraordinary stress on the area, this restoration will last the life of the rug if not longer.   

When the warp and weft reconstruction were completed, we began reknotting the pile.  The long red vertical yarns (the fuzzy section in the bottom right hand corner of the photo below) is the reconstructed pile in progress.

Below is a view of the reconstructed pile taken from the back of the rug.

Below are photos of the reconstructed pile before we cut back the yarns.

Below is the completed pile before we cut back the yarns so that they are the same length of the original rug (the restored section almost looks like a Turkish Tulu which are very much in vogue these days).   In our next post we will share a photo of the result of this Afghan rug restoration project.

Friday, July 1, 2016

Undoing an Old Repair - Afghan Rug Restoration Project

Occasionally we come across rugs that have been repaired in the past but need to be repaired again, or rather restored, due to the earlier repair's failings or an aesthetically unpleasing appearance.  The Afghan rug pictured above and below is an example of an old repair that might have solved an immediate structural problem, but ultimately was temporary at best and certainly detracted from the beauty of the rug.  This Afghan rug was repaired with a patch that was sewn into a section of missing pile.  The patch, while it was specifically woven for this rug, was not integrated into the original rug except for a superficial sewing around the perimeter. We have seen worse examples of this patch approach to repair/restoration, especially when the patch is taken from another rug altogether and therefore the motifs and colors do not blend into the original.   Sometimes restorers opt to repair rugs with a patch so as to stabilize a rug in the most cost effective way as this kind of repair work takes a significantly shorter time than a proper restoration (hours versus weeks if not months).  Our task for this project was to remove the old repair and undertake a restoration that would be integrated into the original structure of the rug rather than a mere sewing in of a patch.  Below are more photos of the patch that we were charged with replacing.

Note in the photo below how simple it was to extract the patch.  It was affixed to the rug only around its perimeter; it was never part of the original structure of the rug.   In our next posts, we will share how we restored this lovely Afghan rug.