Everything You Need to Know About Hand-knotted Rugs

  • 3 months ago


Hand-knotted carpets integrate current designs with the sustenance of communities. We bring weaver’s art directly to homes and deliver not just a carpet but the blessings of a family.

Jaipur Rugs’ hand-knotted rugs are a labor of love. Their journey begins with sheep’s wool and ends with an eclectic hand-crafted carpet -an incredible heirloom for your home.

At Jaipur Rugs, the best quality wool is spun into yarn by the Katwari, or the spinner.

Using the hand charkha, a simple yet magical process inspired by the Gandhian ideal of self-sufficiency raw wool is cleaned & carded, and then spun into yarn. We continue to work with over 2500 women yarn spinners from Bikaner to spin yarn on a rudimentary ‘charkha’, consciously choosing not to replace hundreds of hand-spinning jobs with machines. The twine is washed and dyed into over 3000 colors. This yarn, then coiled into a hank, is weaved into a rug, one knot at a time. You can find a vast collection of our hand-knotted rugs made with real hand-carded wool here.

The meticulous process

Jaipur Rugs’ designs are grounded in the understanding of living spaces and intelligent functionality. The designs tell the story of the artisans who weave their hopes and dreams into them. Creating a hand-knotted rug can take three months to a year depending on the size, quality, and material being used. The rug, in the course of the process, passes through 180 hands, perfecting the timeless art of handmade rugs. After weaving, the rug is examined and then is sent to the finishing center, where it goes through as many as 18 different processes before it can adorn the floor of your living room. You can explore rugs with eclectic modern rugs made one-knot-at-a-time here.


How to identify a hand-knotted rug

You need to measure the density of the knots, using the methodology of KPSI (Knots Per Square Inch), one of the key factors in assessing the rug. If you turn a hand-knotted rug over and count the knots running across the length and breadth per square inch, and multiply them, you will get the total KPSI. For instance, a rug with 14 knots each vertically and horizontally per inch has a KPSI of 196. To gain a deeper understanding of the quality of a hand-knotted rug, visit the Jaipur Rugs’ showroom in Jaipur and Delhi and explore our handmade carpets.

Every carpet is special

Each hand-knotted rug has a unique story, as seen in our award-winning rug collections by Designer Kavi. On unwrapping your hand-knotted rug for the first time, you might see some creases, owing to being tightly packed for shipping. Lay it flat or just roll it up with the pile facing outwards, leaving it overnight to remove the creases. Any lingering odours due to the dyes or the natural fibers will escape once the rug has been unsealed from its packaging and allowed to air out.

How to care for your hand-knotted rug

Your brand new rug will shed loose fibers as a natural part of the wearing process and this will eventually stop, especially if you vacuum it a couple of times. To tackle any sprouts—the long, untamed fibers that appear above the surface of the rug— just trim them with a pair of scissors to even the pile. Over time, rugs can fade if exposed to direct sunlight, thus they should be rotated every six months to minimize this occurrence.

Machine-made Vs Hand-knotted

A hand-knotted rug is an heirloom that has been hand-crafted using age-old knowledge by a community of artisans. Like a piece of art, it will be cherished for years to come, an enduring part of your home and life, unlike the machine-made counterpart that has a life of just mere four-odd years and carries with it a high carbon footprint. Though a single machine can replace 300 artisans, our pledge towards a hand-knotted rug sustains underprivileged communities across India. It is Jaipur Rugs’ commitment towards responsible luxury.

Hand-knotted rug

These are made by the most skilled carpet weavers one knot at a time using ancient techniques. These carpets are of great quality and they are masterpieces that you can walk on. A hand-knotted rug is unique and is made knot by knot on a loom often using materials like silk, wool, bamboo silk, and cotton. These rugs have a flatter pile and the density of knots per square inch at the back of the carpet defines its quality. A carpet with more densely packed knots per square inch is considered a better-quality carpet. A typical Jaipur Rugs hand-knotted carpet can have anything upward of two million knots and it takes anywhere close to six to ten months to make a hand-knotted carpet depending on the intricacy of the design. A hand-knotted rug goes through 18 or more finishing steps before taking its final shape.


Hand-tufted rug

A hand-tufted carpet starts its journey as a canvas stretched on a frame, a tufting tool is used to punch strands of yarn into the canvas with the design traced on it. The process is not as intensive or time-consuming as that of a hand-knotted carpet and takes relatively less skill. The easiest way of identifying a hand-tufted carpet is by looking for the scrim backing on the reverse. A fringe is often added by gluing or sewing to finish the carpet.

How to choose between a hand-knotted vs a hand-tufted?

One of the clear reasons for choosing a hand-knotted is its durability. The construction quality of a hand-knotted carpet makes it last for generations and it often ends up in people’s heirlooms. While it is more expensive than a hand-tufted rug, it is a better value proposition and a collector’s item.

Also, in areas where you have a lot of movement and traffic, a hand-knotted will work better than a hand-tufted. However, if you want quick turnaround time and you are decorating on a budget a hand-tufted rug will suit you more. You can replace tufted rugs faster and you can often get more uncanny designs in them.

For the finest hand knotted-rugs by Jaipur Rugs you can check out collections by Kavi  like Chaos Theory, Project Error, Aakar, Hidden, and Unstring. Tattvam by Gauri Khan and Kolam by Tania and Sandeep Khosla are also great choices for hand-knotted rugs.

Concoction by Shantanu Garg and Jaipur Wunderkammer by Matteo Cibic are some of the bestselling collections in the hand-tufted category. 


A handmade rug is the most artistic and unique artifact. It is made by skilled artisans who spend months on a loom weaving the rug one knot at a time. A typical handmade rug can have upward of two million knots depending on its size and intricacy of design. The artisans weaving it are trained over years in a craft that is passed from one generation to the next.

For the 40,000 artisans associated with Jaipur Rugs, handmade rugs are a source of sustainable livelihood at their doorstep. These artisans are able to find dignified work in their villages thereby solving the problem of migration. Each handmade rug brings with it the story of the artisan who has made it. The artisan imbues his blessings in the yarns of the rug, making it a source of positivity and prosperity for both the buyer and the weaver.



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