The Rug Furnish

Processes Involved in Making of HAND-KNOTTED Rug

Hand-knotted rugs are famous for their intricate design, pattern and rich detailing.

What we do not know is the complex processes that it goes through to come out like the beautiful rugs we see.

Hand-knotted rugs trace their origins to Persia. It was introduced to Indian soils during the reigns of Babur. The first weaving centre for hand-knotted rugs was established in Agra.

Later the weaving and manufacturing of this rug were supported and patronized by Akbar the great king of the Mughal empire. In the 16th century, he invited proficient artisans and craftsmen from Persia to set up rug manufacturing centres in India.

These artisans contributed immensely to flaunt the Mughal court with sophisticated and pretty rugs similar to Persian rugs. Slowly the art of hand-knotted rugs was passed on through generations and it established its roots in Indian culture.

Let us explore the steps of manufacturing hand-knotted rugs.

From start to finish, one handcrafted rug passes through 180 hands, which is a monument to craftsmanship in and of itself. Each of those 90 people possesses a one-of-a-kind and priceless skill that takes years to develop.

Getting the raw material

Merino Wool

It is sourced from New Zealand and utilized in the highest quality 14/14 carpets as well as wool blends. The best wool is sourced from 18 different nations to create yarn blends with shine, durability, and a fleecy texture.

Wool Chokla

Due to the cyclical shearing of sheep in the spring and fall, the best Indian wool for carpets is purchased during a biannual auction in Bikaner. It comes in a variety of textures and quality that are hand-sorted since the traditional knowledge of the locals is invaluable.


Silk is supplied from China and purchased from Indian vendors of the highest quality.


The handpicked wool is then segregated, washed and moved to the next process of carding. In carding process, the spinner layers the strands of the wool together. He then places the strands of wool on a dollop and brushes it to remove the dirt and fine particles in it.

The brushing is also done to remove the lumps and knots in the wool. Wool is made uniform so that it can be spanned into yarn.

Spinning using chakra

Artisans uses centuries old and a symbol of great importance during the freedom struggle that is Chakra.

Wool threads interweave in a wave-like pattern of thick and thin, but they hold together to form the most lasting form of yarn with the most extraordinary texture, perhaps a metaphor for Indian history.

Washing the yarn

It is very crucial to wash the yarn after spinning to remove any dirt, dust or unwanted particles from it.


Rug dyeing is a centuries-old craft that allows artists to produce artistic effects on rugs. Before the dyeing process, the yarn is separated. Lighter wool is better for lighter coloured dyes, whereas darker wool is better for darker dyes and texture.

The texture is also significant since it influences the yarn’s overall quality. Blends of different wools help to control how bristly or soft the finished product is.


Before weaving the artisans draw the design or pattern over graph paper. Then this paper is placed on the loom. After the loom is set, they proceed to put threads over the loom to weave.

After the loom is tied the vertical threads over the loom. These are called wraps and it provides a flat base for weaving. The weavers shifts through the wraps with the help of weft.

As the weaver weaves the yarn and proceeds with each thread and designs the weft runs horizontally to secure the design. It gives a definite look to the edges of the rug as well as builds a base for the rug.

After the weaving process is complete the rug goes forward to washing and finishing steps.

Giving a finishing shine to the rug

A carpet has to go through complex 18 steps in the finishing process. When all of these procedures are completed by hand, it might take up to a month for everything to come together perfectly.

These 18 finishing processes are as follows:

  • Measurement
  • Knot counting
  • Pile height checking
  • Raffu
  • Thukai – knot beating
  • First Shear
  • Design Correction – Sua Birai
  • Back burning
  • Back burn cleaning
  • Dipping
  • Washing
  • Stretching
  • Cutting
  • Binding
  • Pucci Kainchi – Final Shearing
  • Detailing – Kalam Birai
  • Snipping visible cotton – Chinte Nikalna
  • Carving and Embossing

These finishing steps ensure that you get premium quality handcrafted rugs.


Making hand-knotted rugs is not an easy task. Expert artisans, experience, hard work and art are required to weave out such magnificent beauties of intricately woven yards of threads.