Scandinavian Colorful Leaves
Mid-20th Century Swedish Mid-Century Modern Russian and Scandinavian Rugs
Finding the Right Rugs Carpets for You
Carpets and rugs have been around for thousands of years. Prehistoric humans turned to animal skin, wool and fur to craft simple fabrics to soften hard terrain. A 2016 study suggests that "cave lions" were hunted for exactly this purpose, and that decorating your cave with their pelts may have conferred strength and prestige. Although many of these early textiles are still in existence, tracing their precise origins is difficult. Carpets quickly became such a valuable trade commodity that the weavings could easily travel far from their places of origin.
The oldest known carpet was found in southern Siberia. (It may have traveled there from Persepolis in Iran.) For the flat-weave floor rugs crafted by Native Americans, cotton was the primary material before sheep’s wool was introduced in the 16th century. In Europe, carpet-making was fundamental to folk art, and Asian carpets imported to European countries were at one time considered a precious luxury and not intended to remain permanently on the floor.
In modern usage, “carpet” typically denotes a wall-to-wall floor cushioning that is fixed to the floor. Rugs, on the other hand, are designed to cover a specific area and can easily be moved to new locations. However, the terms are interchangeable in many parts of the world, and, in the end, it won’t matter what you decide to call it. Good vintage rugs have made their way into homes across the globe, becoming fixtures used for comfort, prayer and self-expression, so choosing the right area rug is officially a universal endeavor.
It’s well known that a timeless Persian rug, Moroccan berber rug (see our guide) or vintage Turkish rug can warm any interior, but if you’re looking for something unexpected, find a runner rug that pops in your hallway or on your stairs. Dig for dazzling geometric patterns in our inventory of mid-century modern rugs and carpets, which includes works designed by the likes of Swedish textile master Märta Måås-Fjetterström and other artisans.
With the variety of area rugs and carpets rolled out for you on 1stDibs — a collection that includes traditional, modern, minimalist rugs and other coverings of all kinds — things will be looking up every time you’re looking down.