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We sell Shyrdak felt rugs imported from Kyrgyzstan.

Shyrdak Carpets

Unique handcrafted Shyrdak felt rugs from the Tien Shan mountains of Kyrgyzstan.

Felt has been made and used by Central Asian nomadic peoples for over two and a half thousand years. Traditionally, in countries such as Kyrgyzstan, nomads lived in yurts made of and decorated with felt, migrating from winter lowland pastures to summer mountain meadows with their herds of sheep, cattle and horses. The Merino and Karakol sheep that are raised produce some of the finest wool in the world. Since Stalin began his collectivisation programme in the 1930s, the nomadic way of life has gradually diminished but the rich felt-making tradition lives on.

Highly patterned and closel-worked felt floor covers are still produced for daily use in houses and flats as well as for use in the traditional yurts.

Kyrgyz 'mosaic' felt rugs, or shyrdak, are made from two sheets of white felt which have been dyed, cut into identical shapes and reassembled into a mosaic-like textile of interlocking positive and negative patterns. Couching threads in a contrasting colour highlight the overall design, and cover and strengthen the joins between felt sections. Quilting is also used to add a relief effect to the pattern, and to strengthen the carpet by attaching it to a naturally-coloured backing felt. The border edge is often covered by braidwork.


lShyrdak Carpets Imported from Kyrgystan

Shyrdak

Shyrdak

 

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