Armenians Remember Their Carpet Making Tradition

For those who are worried about the fate of the centuries old tradition of carpet making in Armenia in this modern age, there is hope as twin sisters learned the craft starting when they were teens. They twins Haykanush and SahkanushStepanyan both learned the skill atGyumri which is known to be the second largest city in the country of Armenia. Everyone knows including the staff at Breath Easy Carpet Care how precious the art of carpet making in the country.

The teens are now 23 years old and employed by Tufenkian which manufactures wool carpets that are hand-knotted, hand-carded, hand-dyed ad hand-spun. Armenia features many arts but carpet making is something they are renowned for. Centuries ago, the art is considered to be a domestic craft done by housewives to give themselves a break from cooking, taking care of children and cleaning the house.

The Stepanyan twins are going to participate this coming summer in the Smithsonian Folklife Festival. They recognize the intricate art of carpet making wherein after every row is finished, each thread strand is knotted to circle the warp threads therefore varying colors are revealed to make up the intricate design.

According to the Armenian Rugs Society’s president, HratchKozibeyokian, the traditional rugs used to be created for personal reasons by the weaver such as a gift, a dowry or a commemorative item. It was only in the 19th century that Armenian rugs were made for commercial use. During this time, women weavers are paid by merchants for every square inch they completed.

Kozibeyokian added that the industry of Armenian rug making today is stronger compared to the last few years. They refer to the phenomenon as a major revival. In fact, teachers all over the country are traveling to teach young women the ancient art as many were not able to learn carpet making at home. It is said that the tradition was broken but now it is back to life.

The communities of Armenian people are able to discover history through the stories told by the patterns on the carpets. It comes as no surprise that companies such as Breathe Easy Carpet Care are seeing a trend in Armenian carpets.

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