Having been in the business of buying and selling rugs for over a decade, the first questions I get from people are: Before buying an antique rug, what should i consider? Where do i go to buy antique rugs? Where do i actually begin my antique rug-buying hunt?
First of all, dealers, designers and collectors buy rugs online all over the world seek to find the greatest antique rugs. Antique rugs are considered a form of art. A rug needs to be at least 80 years old to be considered an antique. Whereas furniture or art needs to be at least 100 years old to be considered antique. One of the differences is that antique rugs should not look like they were used at all and just viewed as art. Also, rugs are stepped and walked on as opposed to art which is only viewed. Therefore, art will always look newer and last longer. It is amazing that some antique rugs will cost less than an actual new rug. However, there is a misconception that antique rugs cost more than new rugs. A new rug could cost $80 for every square foot in today’s market. This is an average price. The better quality rugs can cost over double that. For example, a 9’x2′ new rug can cost approximately $8, 600. Bearing in mind that the rugs will not necessarily be commercial grade in this price range, nor will they be great pieces. New 9’x12′ rugs have been seen to sell well over $20, 000. Therefore, my question is pretty simple: why not purchase a rug which has resale value if you are going to invest such a substantial amount of money in an antique rug? As nice as new rugs are, they have no intrinsic value. The same rule applies as if you bought a new car and paid $30, 000 for it. As soon as you drive the car out of the dealership, it automatically decreases in value.
Patterns, colors, trends and looks will determine whether a certain rug is a must-have in the current market. Of course, everyone has different tastes and the ultimate decision is a very individual one. All markets are different as well. The American market, for instance, concentrates on decorative pieces. We are a society of beauty. We make our selections by colors and patterns. Other markets base their selection on quality. The European market for instance. Europeans will pay more for an antique rug based on quality. Antique rugs such as an Oushak rug prices are greatly affected by the pattern of the rug as well. For example, all-over designed rugs vs. medallion rugs. All-over designed rugs are at least 30% more expensive that rugs that have a center design. In the American market everything should be centered. We tend to select rugs which have center designs and try to perfectly align the rug in the room according to other furnishings.
First measure the space and determine the size of rug you desire. There are no set rules for placing a rug in a room. Some people prefer a small rug in a large room. Some like to see that the rug fits the room to the exact size. People usually compromise on size first. If they find an antique rug that they fall in love with based on its colors, design, price or style, they are very willing to compromise on size. The cost of new rugs is based on square footage. The bigger the rug is, the more expensive it will be. However, this is not the case with antique rugs since they are individually evaluated based on many factors. For instance, it is not unheard of for an antique rug (5’x8′) to be sold in Christies London for $10 million.
Most high-end decorators believe a rug should be the most expensive piece in the room. Therefore, it makes the most sense to start with the purchase of an antique rug and then purchasing remaining furniture. Finding the perfect rug you love is not going to be an easy task. It takes a lot of time and effort. By seeing what is on the market first, you can compare rugs to your specific taste. There are a lot of choices online. This is the easiest way of finding a rug you love. The internet is also the best way to choose your dream rug since you can compare every rug available. One great site is the Nazmiyal Collection. You can spend hours and days browsing the entire collection. This site has one of the most comprehensive collections such as Antique Oriental rugs and Vintage Moroccan rugs and it is the largest online source of great art and information. There are also plenty of local rug dealers around. This is another great way to get a feel for different designs, colors, types and price ranges.
Once the size, budget and style of rug are established, you are ready to start shopping for antique rugs. More important than the dealer you choose to work with is educating yourself on the purchase of rugs beforehand. Make sure you choose a dealer who has the best reputation and selection. Seek an established dealer who has been in business for a long time as opposed to a smaller dealer who usually has only one or two pieces available. Larger dealers will have reputable collections. Ask friends, family and colleagues for references if you are seeking high-end rugs. Compare prices once you have narrowed down your selection. Visit several dealers and search the internet to get a feel of all aspects before you commit to buying a rug. You will know you have selected the correct piece once you lay it down in your room. If you choose a local dealer, they will be more than happy to bring the rug to your home so you can lay the rug down in your room and know you have the perfect rug. Some of the reputable dealers online will do the same for you. They will offer to pay for the shipping to your home. It is crucial that you read or inquire about dealer guarantees as far as shipping and return policies. You should ask the dealer to provide you with the guarantee in writing.