Overdyed Rugs: A Fabulous Combination of Vintage & Modern
Vintage Anatolian rugs have been cherished and treasured over the years for their exquisite workmanship, bright colors and unique distinctive patterns.However, while many homeowners may love to own one of these splendid creations, the downside is that the vintage look of these rugs often clashes with the homeowners’ existing modern decor.
Enter overdyed vintage rugs – an excellent alternative that allows homeowners to enjoy the classic beauty of an original hand-woven rug without compromising on the overall look of the room. Not surprisingly, this ‘make-over’ of select handcrafted Anatolian and Asian rugs has becoming hugely popular in recent years.
Understanding the appeal of overdyed rugs from Turkey
You may be wondering, why buy an overdyed rug when you could just settle for a modern rug. After all, modern rugs are more easily available and cheaper too.
The truth is, there is a tremendous difference between the two. It’s the difference between owning an original Picasso painting and a computer generated replica.
Turkish overdyed rugs may have the muted colors that are usually seen in their modern counterparts but that’s where the similarity ends. An overdyed rug or a distressed rug as it is often called, has a lived-in look that gives it character and a certain air of distinction that you can never get from a modern rug.
The faded, worn-out look and soft feel gives it a sense of belonging as if it has always been a part of your home. It’s not just another floor covering in the room. Instead it imbues the room with a certain character and flair and plays a key factor in the overall ambience in the room and therein lies its undeniable appeal.
Although you can now find these upcycled rugs all over the world, the most impressive pieces are still obtained from their original birthplace – Turkey. There are several reasons for this. For one thing, the original weavers have a deeper understanding of their creations best and are the best experts when it comes to upcycling the original creations. Secondly, over-dyeing rugs is just one manifestation of the Turkish culture of repurposing and reusing items instead of throwing things away. After years of recycling rugs they have mastered the art and have a certain level of expertise that you would not find anywhere else.
Two huge benefits that overdyed rugs offer
Overdyed rugs do more than just enhance the looks of your interiors. The rugs that are overdyed are typically older pieces that may be worn, damaged or just faded. When you buy such a rug, you are showing your commitment to recycling and to preserving the environment.
Another huge benefit of buying distressed rugs is that they are so affordable. Vintage or antique hand-woven rugs and kilims can cost a fortune. When you buy an overdyed version you are getting a quality, vintage rug for a fraction of the price!
A behind-the-scenes look at the overdyeing process
Only vintage and antique rugs are usually chosen to be overdyed. Rugs that were produced between the 1920s and 1970s are categorized as vintage. Rugs that were produced before the 1920s are considered antiques.
There are several different methods that can be used to over-dye rugs and accelerate the ageing process. Generally however, they all go through a similar process with slight variations that are employed to obtain a slightly different outcome.
The rugs are sheared either partially or wholly so there is very little or no pile remaining. This is what gives the rug its distinctive distressed look.
The second step focuses on removing or neutralizing the existing colors of the rug. Again, depending on the desired outcome the rug is either stone washed to remove all existing color or put through a series of specialized processes that only softens the original colors. These processes are highly specialized to wash away only the color but not the pattern. After all or some of the color has been washed away what is remaining is the outline of the original pattern. This outline now creates a foundation for a brand new version of the rug.
The fully or semi-washed rug is now ready to be infused with striking colors. This is done using several different techniques. Some may be dipped into a vat of dye and dyed one color. For a deeper hue the process may be repeated several times. Paler colors are more common as they are a truer representation of the distressed look. The dyes used are specialized dyes that are sourced from different countries in Europe.
Using various specialized techniques, expert over-dyers also create marvelous multi-tonal effects and block color effects.
The overdyed rug is now sent to be laundered before drying. Laundering sets the color of the rug and helps it to last long. The overdyed effect lasts for many years.
That’s it! The overdyed rug is now ready for your home. In the finished product you can often see shade and texture variations. These variations are a result of irregular surfaces and uneven wear and tear. They add to the value of the rug.
Patchwork overdyed rugs are another variation of a classic
Patchwork overdyed rugs take distressed rugs to whole new level. These rugs are created by sewing together smaller fragments of different shapes that have been cut from larger rugs. Depending on the desired effect, a patchwork rug may be made using pieces from the same color tones or from contrasting colors.
A sturdy, thick yarn is used to join the pieces. Not only does this thick yarn boost the strength of the finished piece but it also gives it a rugged look that is very attractive.
After all the pieces have been attached, the completed rug is reinforced with a backing made of sturdy cotton cloth.
What is particularly appealing about patchwork overdyed rug is that the individual pieces are obtained from different rugs, each of which has its own history and its own story to tell. Moreover, each patchwork rug is like a showcase for a wide range of techniques, patterns and weaving skills. A piece like this can make for an excellent conversation piece in any setting.
Did you know that you could even get an overdyed patchwork rug tailored to your requirements? You could get one custom made to the exact size and color combination to fit your space.
A few ideas for using overdyed rugs in your home decor
The sky really is the limit when it comes to using Turkish overdyed rugs in your home decor. Each piece is unique and can be used in a variety of ways to enhance the overall look in any space.
Is the room done up in a minimalistic style decor with neutral shades? In such a space offers a variety of options. While an overdyed rug in a lighter shade can help give the room a seamless look, a brightly colored piece can add a punch of color and loads of drama to the room.
Is your room already bright and colorful? You need to be a little more careful when choosing an overdyed rug for such a space. Whether you go for a bright or light colored rug, it is important that the piece you pick should complement the decor that is already in the rom.
Whether you choose to complement or clash, add drama or tone the existing decor, an overdyed vintage rug is a fantastic and affordable way to enhance the overall look of any room and give it a cozy, lived-in feeling.
Would you like to know some more? Check out the Overdyed Section of our online rug store and browse through our spectacular selection of Turkish overdyed rugs.
- Rug Wiki