Antique Ppeking Rug Carpet

Peking Rugs historically been a product of the Hui-hui people of China a Persian speaking Chinese minority of Persian and Arab descent. Peking Rugs were  first produced by the Hui who were broght to the capital to weave for the court.

Antique Chinese Peking Dragon Rug from Richard Rothstein of  the great Philadelphia Area Oriental Rug store.

Antique Chinese Peking Bat Mat Rug from Richard Rothstein of  the great Philadelphia Area Oriental Rug store.

Peking Rugs are part of a long standing migration of both people and design across the Silk Route. 

Yuan Dynasty White Porcelain Vase

The Dyeing of Chinese Rugs.

American lovers of oriental rugs are becoming increasingly familiar with the products of Chinese looms. The methods of dyeing the yarn used in these rugs are exceedingly primitive, but the-colors obtained are exceptionally fast. The following account of the materials employed and the method of application recently appeared in "The Dyer and Calico Printer," and is of general interest:

The wool that enters into Chinese carpets is grown in Mongolia, and the yarn is spun by old men and idle women in the border villages. Each spinner strolls about with a wad of raw wool and a hand spindle, and accumulates a ball of yarn by a mechanical twirling of the spindle while entering vigorously into the gossip of the day. As no shuttle is used in the weaving of the carpets, so there is no wheel used in the spinning of the yarn. The Chinese rug is most literally hand-made.

The Ninghsia dyes never fade, but gain in lustre as they age. A twenty-four-year-old carpet, far from being worn out, has a silky brilliance and gloss which cannot be imitated. The native dyes used in Peking, when properly set, will outlast the carpet, and nothing has yet been discovered in China which will bleach the rug without ruining

the carpet, if the dyer has done his work conscientiously. Actual experiment has shown that it is possible to boil a new rug to shreds without extracting the dye out of the yarn.

Each rug maker does his own dyeing to match the colors in the design submitted to him. At one dyeing he makes enough to finish the carpets, so that there can be no possible variation in shade, and he has his whole supply of the various colors dyed, set and dried, ready for the client's inspection before he sets his men to work on the loom. Minerals are rarely used. Their blue is indigo; the locust tree, which also yields black; brown comes from a kind of acorn husk; purple trom hollyhocks: and yellows, reds, greens and other shades from various native woods, mostly cheap and abundant.

The dyer takes as much dyewood or seed as his judgment prompts him to use, throws it into a great pot of boiling water, and when the liquid takes on color throws in the yarn, and sets a man to stir it. The fixing of the colors is done with alum. A rug made partly with yarn dyed with the native vegetable dyes and partly with aniline dyes fades in streaks and patches, and betrays itself in a few months, but the colors in a well-dyed Peking rug temper evenly and bear any amount of washing. Strong soap and water have no more effect on a good rug than they have upon a good handkerchief, and often make a surprising difference in the ornamental qualities of a carpet that appears hopelessly old and dirty.

The recent carpet boom has made the Chinese carpet an article of trade, and has given it the status, of a useful and ornamental floor covering. The successful buyers in the carpet centres have worked hard to impress their ideas upon the native artists, with the result that the Chinese are developing a perception of color and arrangement as the foreigner sees them, and are relegating their old patterns to the dust-bins.

Chinese Indigo.

A consular report states, that the cultivation of indigo has been notably augmented in the Swatow district, China. The export of crude indigo, in a paste form, increased from 1,683 short tons in 1913 to 5,388 tons in 1916. The dyestuff is sent chiefly to other parts of China, and also to Siam and Singapore. The methods of extraction employed are much cruder than those used in India.

Chemical age: Volume 26 - Page 22 1917

Thanks and best wishes,

J. Barry O'Connell Jr.

Persian Rugs the O'Connell Guides

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