"Elephant Foot" Design Afghan Baccara rug cleaning & repair for a client in Essex

In the Spring of 2023 we undertook the cleaning and repair of a beautiful red Afghan rug for a lady client in Essex. This rug is probably around 20-years old, so while not old enough to be classed as vintage or antique, it is nevertheless a very attractive deep pile rug, Unfortunately the rug had suffered moth damage and was in need of urgent repair before the moths ate even more of the pile, leaving an unsightly hole in an otherwise lovely rug.

The first step was to thoroughly clean the rug before repair work began

First we 'dry dusted' this thick piled rug to vibrate and extract any accumulated dirt and grit hidden deep within the rug fibres that can not only cause damage to the pile, but also reveal any further evidence of moth damage. Next, the rug was then soaked and washed with a gentle organic shampoo, followed by thorough rinsing to wash away any remaining traces of grime, contaminants and cleaning product. Finally excess water was removed and moth protection applied, before allowing rugs to dry naturally. Once the rug was clean, our rug restoration technicians were able to assess the extent of the moth damage, resulting in a hole that required 'reweaving and repiling' with naturally dyed wools that closely matched the rug's original colours to ensure the repair blended with the rest of the rug so it would be hardly noticeable.

Why cleaning precedes rug repair

If a rug is repaired before cleaning, dirt and other contaminants in the rug may be sealed in, making it harder to remove them afterwards during the washing process. A clean Persian rug will show any damage or wear more clearly, making it easier for the specialist repairer to identify and address the issues.

In addition to cleaning, this Afghan Baccara rug needed additional repairs

  • Cleaning: vibration dust extraction was followed by thorough soaking, power washing, rinsiig, drying and moth treatment
  • Hole Repair: using wools that closely matched the original rug fibes and colours we relined and re-piled mot damaged areas
  • Edge Repair: frayed edges along both long sides  were rewhipped using colour-matched wool to stop further edge unravelling
  • Fringe Repair: frayed and unravelling fringes on the short sides threatening the rug's foundation were repaired to prevent further damage

Moth Damage — Before Repair

Moth Damage — After Repair

Fringe Repair

Hole Repair Close Up

Afghanistan east of Iran —home of the Afghan rug

About Afghan Baccara or Bokhara Rugs

Baccara rugs originated from the city of Bokhara, in what is today Uzbekistan, one of the main towns along the famous Silk Road, where the original Turkman rugs were sold in the local Bazar and soon became known as Bokhara or Baccara rugs. Today, Bokhara carpets are mainly woven in Pakistan with the traditional Elephant Foot design in lustrous soft wool using the same traditional hand-woven techniques just like the original Bokhara rugs. The most common colour is red, and the softness in its textures comes from repeatedly combed wool which is washed several times to give it a silkier feel.

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Want to know more?

Read our Guide to Antique Persian Rug Repair Cleaning & Restoration

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Get in touch

Got an oriental or Persian rug that needs cleaning and a little TLC? Don't hesitate to give us a call.

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In addition to antique rug cleaning, repair and restoration services, we also travel continually to source the best and most authentic oriental and Persian rugs and carpets on behalf of clients, at very affordable prices

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