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Q&A: Do you recommend Purchase of expensive Rugs online?



Dear Rug Rag,

 I just wanted to know if you guys recommend purchasing an expensive rug online?  This is the item under consideration on eBay
Also do you have a rug gallery or rug store?



"Gold Thread" Rug on eBay



Great question!

Given certain criteria is met, purchasing a high dollar value rug online is not as bad an idea as some would have you think.  If accurate information is provided by the seller, recent photographs with thorough item description, in addition to a fair and feasible return policy being allotted, you're off to a good start.  The main objective as a buyer should be to make sure information is clear and transparent, and the seller has a good reputation along side a rug verification from us. We are the first independent third party to review the exact rug under consideration! Always make sure the item has no odor, no uneven tension, lays flat and even try running it by the pros in our Forum

It's tough to give a blanket approval of any one seller.  Certain stores specialize in certain rugs.  Advertising techniques change over time.  This particular piece appears to be a Chinese silk going by the design, materials, knot alignment, colors, fringe knotting, and kilim.  However, we did not see this information provided for confirmation in the item description.  If the rugis destined for a high traffic area or if it matters to you, consider asking what exactly the gold thread is made of.

Item is advertised with 400 KPSI which may be an honest mistake.  We counted 14x14, which comes to roughly 196 kpsi, or roughly half what's advertised.  KPSI should always be measured in 2 or more areas, ideally 3 closer to the field. 

Ask the seller to have the rug verified with us and we can clarify this information.  Check with seller for return policy, it's good to clarify these specifics prior to making arrangments or purchase.

Lastly, to answer your final question:  We do not have a gallery, nor do we have a rug store.  Rather than offering rugs ourselves, we reinforce specific items from reputable brick and mortar stores and encourage online sellers to provide honest descriptions, have good business practices, fair prices and accurate item descriptions. 

Thanks for contacting and best of luck!



- Rug Rag



We look forward to talking with anyone who may have questions on or about oriental rugs.  We are an Independent Reviewer, and will give you our opinion for any rug, new or old.  Should you have any questions you would like to submit for a blog entry response, please do so, and be sure to include photographs of your rug.  For more information, please take a look at the bottom of this page, or feel free to Contact Us at


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For all those interested in submitting a question to the Rug Rag Editors:  We'd be more than happy to help, please send some photographs of the reverse side of the rug very close up with a quarter placed on the knots, plus a picture of the fringe, the whole face of the rug and detail shot of the pile.  If the rug is worn, please include photographs of worn areas.  For rugs of any age, please be sure to check for dry areas, moth damage, odor, and whether or not the rug is straight/has right angles where called for.  If you have any questions about our assessment request feel free to send us an email.  Otherwise, we are looking for something similar to these images posted here


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Inexpensive: Take a look at Kilim Rugs up for bid on eBay!
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December 30. 2008 10:40

Khosrow Sobhe

It is good to receive such a wonderful third party honest opinion on this rug by the RugRag experts. Please note that the seller does not mention the origin of this rug clearly, therefore do not assume (by defalut) that this is a hand knotted genuine Persian rug. It says the style is Persian and in another section says "100% silk Oriental rug". I believe this is not a good will sign by the seller when it is not clearly mentioned where the rug was made.

Good luck.
Khosrow Sobhe
Los Angeles

Khosrow Sobhe

December 30. 2008 11:49


The importance of sellers clearly stating the country of origin is very essential. Additionally, whether or not the fibers are real silk or art silk will also have impact on the value of the carpet as Dr. Sobhe Stated. While we can tell the rug is hand knotted by certain characteristics viewable in provided photographs, whether or not a rug is actually silk will need to rely on the seller's reputation and word. There are, however, instances where rugs with exceedingly high knot would be a counter-productive proposition to make a with art silk. This piece would be a good idea to ask seller material inputs used.

As Dr. Sobhe alluded and we stated in the response: This is probably not a true "Silk Qum" made in Iran. I believe this is a Chinese interpretation of a Qum or Hereke carpet. e.g., not clearly stated in item title/description.

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