Antique Spotlight – Malayer Carpet

This antique Malayer carpet is a classic. With its geometric medallions and traditional color palette, this antique is as fine as it is functional. Keep reading to learn more about this iconic Malayer carpet.

Located in the Northwest region of Iran, the Malayer people are a large tribe that specializes in small antique rugs and runners. The height of Malayer rug production was during the late 19th and early 20th centuries.  During this period, the Malayer tribe produced some of their most memorable and iconic carpets. Emerging from this region came the use of the boteh, otherwise known as the paisley motif. This design is said to symbolize the internal flame, rebirth, and growth in nature. Additional design inspirations derive from their surrounding Hamadan and the Sarouk tribes.

Measuring 4’2″ x 6′, this Persian Malayer carpet is hand-knotted in red, cream, and blue shades of wool. Circa 1900, this carpet is woven with functionality in mind and is in like-new condition. Created using traditional Persian weaving techniques, these methods provide a plush pile while still producing a durable foundation.  Starting from the field’s center, we find three diamond-shaped medallions on top of the carpet’s rich red background. Inside these medallions are traditional Malayer boteh motifs in shades of red, cream, and blue detailing.  The medallions pop off the carpet’s rich red background, creating fabulous contrast for the medallions and the multi-level border. The border includes additional flower, vine, leaf, and boteh motifs that connect throughout the carpet. Altogether, this carpet is stunning with its vivid tones and classic design, this Malayer carpet would be perfect as a living room carpet, a bedroom carpet, or even as an entryway carpet.

This versatile Malayer carpet is gorgeous but may not be the right piece for your space. If you want to see additional antique options, as well as a selection of some of our fine contemporary-made pieces, check out Orley Shabahang’s 1stDibs page to see the collection!