Manual helps rug buying decisions

Peter F. Stone, is an expert on oriental carpets and has written several books. Originally published 1981, this updated, hardcover edition of “Oriental Rug Repair, Step-by-Step Reknotting and Reconstruction, Care and Preservation,” was published in 2010. It covers all the necessary methods, materials and tools needed to repair and maintain oriental rugs.

It has a definite “you can do it” attitude about it. The author states, “Anyone who can develop needlecraft skills can acquire the skills used in oriental rug repair. The primary requisites are attention to detail and patience.”

So if you have the will, he has the way, as illustrated in the step-by-step instructions that include, but are not limited to, reknotting, selecting yarn, using patches, repairing ends, and selvage and edge repairs. However, he does caution that both experience and practice are necessary to develop the skill needed to properly repair an oriental rug. How do you get that experience? By practicing on worn and worthless rugs.

Touted as “an indispensable sourcebook for collectors and dealers,” even if you won’t be applying the practices and techniques directly, the information within “Oriental Rug Repair” can be used to evaluate the repairability and price of rugs on the market that are worn or damaged to help you make a well-informed decision.

Anyone who owns an oriental rug might be well tempted to purchase this book for chapters 9 (Washing Rugs) and 10 (Stain Removal and Use, Care, Storage, and Display) alone. Step-by-step procedures for removing specific, common stains such as lipstick, mildew and grass stains are included in chapter 9, and the dos and don’ts of living with oriental rugs are included in chapter 10. Here’s a hint for everyone who owns a rug or carpet: Always wipe a spill up towards the center of the spill or stain to minimize spreading the staining materials.

Visual aids in “Oriental Rug Repair” include 363 illustrations, 37 of which are in color; the photographs are sometimes a bit small but always clear, and the line drawings are precise and detailed. The book also includes a substantial bibliography for further reading and impressive illustrated glossary.

I would rather have had the spiral be a bit bigger for easier page turning, as this is no lightweight vanity book meant to sit on a shelf or coffee table: It is a professional-quality manual for caring for and repairing what may be called woven works of art. ?


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