Rug in the city of Isfahan
By: Iran Carpet
While architecture and painting were the main artistic vehicles of the Safavids, the making of textiles and carpets was also of great importance.
In the 16th century, hitherto primarily nomadic crafts were transformed into royal industries by the creation of court workshops. The best-known carpets of this period, dated 1539, come from the Mausoleum of Sheikh Safi al-Dlein Safavid in Ardabil and, in the opinion of many experts, represent the summit of achievements in carpet design. The larger of the two is now kept in London's Victoria and Albert Museum, while the other can be seen at the Los Angeles County Museum.
Shah Tahmasb admired carpets so much that he learned weaving techniques and designed several very refined models himself. Under Shah Abbas, the artists developed the use of gold and silver threads in carpets, culminating in the great coronation carpet now held in the. Rosenberg Castle in Copenhagen.
As one would expect, the carpets made for Abbas the Great were large in scale and grandiose in design. The "vase" pattern, also called Shah Abbasi, contains great palmettes, huge leaves, flower-strewn meadows, and sometimes animals. The so called "Polonaise" carpets, most of which have found their way to Europe, are enriched with threads of silk, gold covered silver and silver. The predominantly geometric themes of earlier Iranian carpets were not abandoned entirely but tended to be replaced by the plant, animal, and occasional human themes; medallions and Shah Abbasi flowers are the most usual motifs. The Safavid carpets are also characterized by arabesque tendrils, and margins in colors which contrast with those of the center. Modern Esfahan carpets are characterized by a pale beige or light blue palette.
However, sometimes as many as fifteen colors are used for contrast and outlines, including several different shades of red. Both warp and weft are made of wool and cotton, though silk wefts are also found.
Sometimes gold or silver threads are used for small highlights, recalling the early "Polonaise" rugs.
Carpets vary in size, though large carpets are quite rare. Modern Esfahan carpets bear mostly the Shah Abbasi designs; patterns are very intricately drawn and precisely executed.
Among other carpets woven in Esfahan are Armani bafs made by Christian Armenians with the Turkish knot, and Isfahan mirs, nomads' carpets from the vicinity of Esfahan, also finely woven with the Turkish knot.
the most characteristic ceramics of his reign show the strong influence, and often the direct imitation, of Far Eastern samples. Beautiful chinaware with Chinese techniques and Persian ornamentation is a remarkable manifestation of the magnificent age of pottery that started with the emergence of the Safavid dynasty.
New forms were devised, among them large saucer-shaped rice dishes, little octagonal trays, and long-necked perfume sprinklers. Unfortunately, Iranian potters never achieved true porcelain, and the porcelain-like ware they created did not carry with it the strength of its model. Fired at a lower temperature, Iranian glazes were softer and more fragile than on Chinese pottery and developed extensive crackles more easily.
The carpet patterns are usually taken from the old tile designs and sketched by the drums on the papers. Then the sketch on the paper must be colored. In this step, the painter decides on the right colors for the floor and the edge of the carpet and, based on his choice, paints various components of carpet design such as flowers, holidays, trees frame, triangular, central flower, etc Small boards and cover the boards with varnish to avoid colors from extinction and to give the design boards to the carpet weaver and they begin to weave the carpet from their first strip.
Now the weaver starts with two fingers of the weaving edge with his finger, and with the finger of the other hand, the wool throws to a layer of the selvedge and with the wool head gives a twist to the other of the selvedge and pulls both heads of wool at first , And in the same case he changes the threads to the temples. After a strip is finished, he places all the other threads on the top of the selvedge and pounds over them with a device called Daftin (comb) to make the nooses tight and tidy. Then he cuts the additional wool through a pair of scissors, and this process is repeated until the end of the carpet. The end time of this repetition depends on the size of the carpet and lasts from 6 months to 6 years. After the weaving, the carpets are put into the special workshop and some work such as thinning of the carpet, facial washing, soap washing, luster washing, cloth washing, thread dummies and leather stitching. In this step, the carpets and carpets are ready to be exported all over the world.