The value of a carpet

The value of a carpet

5 factors that affect the value of a carpet

“Not all treasure is silver and gold”

Jack Sparrow’s words of wisdom also apply to carpets. Carpets are true cultural treasures whose value lies not in the materials they are made of, but rather, in their design, history, and craftsmanship. But the biggest treasure is the carpet’s emotional value, because each carpet tells its own story. Read on and find out more about what makes a carpet valuable.


Let’s take a look at the five factors that can affect the value of a carpet:


  1. Materials and fixed costs

  2. Knot density and size

  3. Origin and age

  4. Patterns, colours, cultural significance

  5. Aesthetics and design


1. Materials and fixed costs when making a carpet

An essential factor in determining the price of a carpet are the fixed costs of making a carpet. This applies first of all to the materials and the special tools being used. There is a great variation in the required raw materials, such as the quality of the wool. The same applies to the dyes, whose quality is not usually known until after the carpet has been subject to decades of use. That is why it is worthwhile to have the highest quality requirements when manufacturing a carpet, and to accept the higher prices. Also, labour costs can vary greatly, depending on how much experience and expertise the carpet-making artists have.


2. Knot density and carpet size

The number of knots in a carpet is one of the biggest determining factors when it comes to the amount of work required to make a carpet. The more knots there are per square decimetre, the more work required. Of course, this also depends on the size of the carpet. In view of the fact that a carpet knotter ties an average of 30,000 to 5,000 knots daily, the time to manufacture a carpet can be calculated as follows:


2-6 months for a high-quality carpet (3,000 knots/dm2)

1-2 weeks for a standard, lower-quality carpet (500 knots/dm2)



Vintage Persian Carpet Value of a Carpe 

3. Origin and age of the carpet

Thanks to the knowledge we have about a carpet’s origins, we can draw conclusions on the techniques and workmanship used to make the carpet. When it comes to knots, there is a difference between Persian and Turkish knots, and depending on the region and the traditions, different techniques are used. Every region has acquired experience over generations and further developed and refined its techniques.

When classifying the age of a carpet, there are four broad categories:

  • Antique carpets
older than 100 years
  • Classic carpets
between 50-100 years
  • Neo-classic carpets     
less than 50 years
  • Newer carpets
less than 5 years or not used

The origin of a carpet is a significant factor in determining a carpet’s value, whereby the age of a carpet does not necessarily affect its price. The condition the carpet is in also plays a significant role.

4. Patterns and colours and their cultural significance

Not only the origin of a carpet can tell us a lot about a carpet – the order of the patterns and the use of colours can also be used as an identifying feature, depending on how the colour is applied and combined. These are usually linked with values and traditions that distinguish the carpet as an unusual item of cultural heritage.


Vintage Persian Carpets Value of Carpets


5. The aesthetic value of a carpet

One might disagree on matters of taste – and naturally, it’s hard to capture the aesthetic value of a carpet in numbers. After all, taste is subjective. However, or maybe because of this, the aesthetic value is often the biggest factor in determining the value of a carpet.


A carpet as an investment

If you were looking at the photos included in this blog, you will have seen our most expensive carpet:

Vintage Persian Carpets Original

It is an exclusive Persian carpet from our collection of over 11,000 carpets. This unusual specimen is, believe it or not, 16.32 m, which is reflected in the costs of making the carpet, both in terms of materials and labour. But even with respect to the knot density and its origin or the affidavit stating it is a genuine Persian carpet, this carpet falls under the highest value category. One of its defining features is the typical dramatic central field, which is repeated in intricate patterns to the borders. In addition to being in perfect condition, it’s simply an exquisitely beautiful carpet!

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