How to Appraise Carpets & Rugs

Oriental rugs have been a worldwide favorite amongst collectors and homeowners for centuries, appreciated and enjoyed by royalty and laymen as works of art and items of elevated luxury and status. Do you own an old carpet or rug you may have picked up at a flea market, or perhaps something you've inherited? If so, Value My Stuff will happily appraise your items. Read this article for more information about how to appraise carpets and rugs.

Carpets & Textiles

What is the Difference Between Carpets and Rugs?

Although the two terms are often synonyms, there's a clear difference. A carpet is installed, and spans typically wall to wall, meaning total floor covering. A rug, on the other hand, is, in general, movable, meaning that rugs are typically much smaller than carpets.

Follow these easy steps to appraise your carpets and rugs.

A room of various oriental rugs. (Public Domain)

A room of various oriental rugs. (Public Domain)


The most highly emphasized consideration taken when it comes to determining the appraisal of a rug is its condition relative to its age. The older the carpet or rug is, and the better condition it is in, the more rare and thus valuable it will be on the market. It is essential to look out for damage such as discoloration, fading, fraying, holes, burns, stains, and other compromises to the rug's quality of appearance and function. However, if a rug isn't in top-notch condition, all is not necessarily lost; in some cases in which a piece is ancient, rare, and sought-after, it may still be worth quite a lot, even if it does bare some flaws from the wear of time. Likewise, even though an item is in top condition, it will still be high in value if it is not particularly desirable to buyers on the market.


The country in which an oriental rug is made highly impacts its value in the case of both antique and new items alike. Some regions, towns, villages, or workshops are historically well-known and highly regarded for their skillmanship and artistry in producing their rugs; thus, with the name comes a reputation that will inherently possess a higher value. For example, the Turkish village of Usak in Central Anatolia has been weaving carpets for centuries and today holds a status as one of the most admired and greatly valued places of origin in terms of weaving. Rugs woven in Turkey today require a great deal more time, finishing processes, and skill than most other contributors to the market, as wool must be hand spun and dyed in small batches of different colors, and Turkish labor is thus more expensive. Additionally, the fact that an item bears the label of an authentic Usak rug will ensure its value will be enduringly high.

The world's oldest known pile carpet was found in the largest of the Pazyryk burial mounds. It's exhibited in the Hermitage Museum Saint Petersburg. (Public Domain)

The world's oldest known pile carpet was found in the largest of the Pazyryk burial mounds. It's exhibited in the Hermitage Museum Saint Petersburg. (Public Domain)

Materials and Craftsmanship

Not only do the materials and craftsmanship utilized in making a textile directly affect its aesthetic appeal, but they are also significant components in determining its value. Most often, the materials used in the making of oriental rugs will be camel hair, goat hair, wool, cotton, silk, and metal threads. In recently made rugs, materials are present such as banana silk, cactus silk, and even some synthetic substances. It is necessary to assess your item's worth to be aware that wool is available in various grades or levels of quality. Regions located in areas of higher elevation tend to source their wool from sheep with more dense and substantial coats, which allow for a more sumptuous rug pile. Hand weaving the wool as opposed to doing so by machine will also result in a softer, smoother pile; all of these factors will be noticeable in the quality of the rug.

How To Determine The Value of Carpets and Rugs

As is the case with many other works of art and collectibles, but especially in the case of carpets and rugs, the more untouched the carpet or rug is, the better. However, the only way to truly identify and ascertain whether or not your rug is of this highly regarded caliber is to seek professional appraisal. Only an expert will be able to truly understand the nature of your rug, thus reducing the margin for error in determining its value as much as possible. Here at Value My Stuff, professional appraisers in the field will be able to lead you on your journey to finding the value of your oriental rug today. Follow these simple steps to appraise carpets and rugs today.

Other factors

The knot density of a rug will also affect its worth. Even today, most weaving patterns are unique to specific regions; however, in some areas where labor is cheaper, weavers are instructed to use knots that are not local to the area. Also, as a result of this profit-driven approach to weaving, wools of lesser quality and density will be used, and knots will be tied in a flimsy manner; these pieces will be less durable and resilient against the test of time. A rug of lesser quality, such as this, will be identifiable by its flexibility when handling it, whereas a high-quality rug will feel sturdier and more difficult to bend.

When it comes to the coloring of a rug, natural dyes are, without exception, preferred to synthetic ones; this is due to the more earthy appearance of the colors, as well as the expertise and knowledge required to complete the complex process of their creation. This additional labor and limited availability of those who possess the training to make these colors contribute to the textile's value.

Jean-Léon Gérôme's painting "The Carpet Merchant" from 1887. (Public Domain)

Jean-Léon Gérôme's painting "The Carpet Merchant" from 1887. (Public Domain)

How To Get Carpets & Rugs Appraised

Only a professional will be able to provide you with a sure and particular range of value and an up-to-date price for your Carpets & Rugs by using their experience and expertise to eliminate as much chance for misstep and error as possible. Luckily here at Value My Stuff, there are experts in the field who can provide professional valuation services so that you can take the necessary steps to discover how much your Carpets & Rugs are worth today! Start Your Carpets & Rugs Appraisal Here!

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