Savonnerie, circa 1960

13' x 9'11"

Savonnerie, circa 1960: 13' x 9'11"

Savonnerie, circa 1960: 13' x 9'11"
Savonnerie, circa 1960: 13' x 9'11"
Savonnerie, circa 1960: 13' x 9'11"
Savonnerie, circa 1960: 13' x 9'11"
Savonnerie, circa 1960: 13' x 9'11"
Savonnerie, circa 1960: 13' x 9'11"
Savonnerie, circa 1960: 13' x 9'11"
NameSavonnerie, circa 1960
Size in feet13' x 9'11"
Size in meters3.96 x 3.02
Pile (Fiber & Yarns Used)100% Pure Wool, Natural Organic Dyes
Type of fabricationHand-knotted with Senneh knots (asymetrical)
Country Made InChina
Design OriginFrench
ConditionPre-Owned semi-antique in excellent condition.
Carpet IDSEK21103021
CUSTOM SIZES AVAILABLE BY SPECIAL ORDER
PLEASE CONTACT US FOR AVAILABILITY
Sizes Are Approximate. Photos Are Representative And Not Necessarily Exact For Color
New Rugs Are Of The Highest Quality In Its Category And Are Handpicked Overseas By The Bashir Family
A Brief History of Savonnerie Carpets

Savonnerie Carpet WeavingThe early history of carpets in France is tied to the story of two weaving ateliers, Savonnerie and Aubusson. There are earlier references to carpets being woven in France before the seventeenth century, but no examples survive.

The granting of a license by Henri IV to Pierre Dupont in France, 1608, to manufacture Savonnerie carpets is similar in spirit to the establishment of court workshops by the Mughals and Safavids, whose common aim was to produce superlative works of art, including carpets. In 1627 Louis XVIII gave a royal privilege to Dupont (1577-1640) and his pupil Simon Lourdet (d.1671) for weaving carpets. They set up business in an old soap factory, hence the name Savonnerie, which quickly became the label attached to the products of the factory - carpets, panels and wall hangings - all created exclusively for the court. From the beginning, individual designers were employed to create designs, all of which were European in style..

Unlike early American or British carpets, no attempt seems to have been made by the Savonnerie atelier to emulate oriental carpets. A law was passed to prohibit the importation of carpets from the East to France in order to safeguard the Savonnerie workshop, which was granted a monopoly for the weaving of knotted-pile carpets. The seventeenth-century Savonnerie carpets have an opulent grandeur associated with them. Until 1768 the factory worked chiefly, if not exclusively, for the court, producing pile carpets only..

The richness of the colours used and the supremely confident manner with which acanthus scrolls, classical motifs and floral motifs were handled, combined to create a sumptuous effect worthy of any royal household. In 1663, Colbert, one of Louis XIV's ministers, stipulated that a painter from the Royal Academy had to oversee the designs for the carpets and to teach drawing to the staff every month. Several important painters were associated with Savonnerie in this way, notably Charles Le Brun and, later in the eighteenth century, Francois Boucher..

Austere state economies, due to the financial problems arising from the wars in the latter part of Louis XIV's reign, were largely responsible for the decline of the factory between 1690 and 1712. However, it was later revived and produced very pretty feminine carpets akin to the prevailing styles in the other decorative arts of the era. Soft colours, delicately drawn flowers, floral swags and ribbons are typical. Its heyday was over and by the beginning of the nineteenth century, cheaper Aubusson carpets became popular, although Napoleon employed the factory to weave handsome Empire-style carpets. In 1825, Savonnerie was amalgamated with the Gobelins tapestry factory and its independent existence came to an end. To read more about french style rugs and their history, visit our French Rugs section.

Sources and inspiration: B?rinstain, Val?rie, et al. L'art du tapis dans le monde (The art of carpets in the world). Paris: Meng?s, 1996. Print.; Jerrehian Jr., Aram K.A. Oriental Rug Primer. Philadelphia: Running Press, 1980. Print.; Herbert, Janice Summers. Oriental Rugs, New York: Macmillan, 1982. Print.; Hackmack, Adolf. Chinese Carpets and Rugs, Rutland and Tokyo: Tuttle, 1980. Print. ; De Moubray, Amicia, and David Black. Carpets for the home, London: Laurence King Publishing, 1999. Print.; Jacobsen, Charles. Oriental Rugs A Complete Guide, Rutland and Tokyo: Tuttle, 1962. Print.; Bashir, S. (n.d.). Personal interview.; Web site sources and dates of consultation vary (to be confirmed). Without prejudice to official usage.

About Antique Rugs

"Antique" refers to carpets at least 100 years old, whereas rugs between 50 and 99 years of age are classified as "semi-antique".

Typically crafted with hand-spun wool and eco-friendly organic dyes, old carpets have a more luminous surface, creating an illusion of depth. Newer pieces are rarely able to capture the patina and character of an antique, which can add warmth to even the most pristine and minimalist spaces.

Oriental & Persian carpet designs began to change at the turn of the 20th century, as Western influence expanded across the Middle East. The authenticity of the unique designs produced by local cultures declined with the introduction of larger-scale production that aimed to accommodate foreign tastes. Preserving the traditional techniques involved in the craft also became more challenging following the effects of the Industrial Revolution.

Tips for Collectors
  • Antique rugs are made of wool, cotton and silk. New rugs can be made from a variety of fibers, both natural and synthetic, including wool, cotton and silk, but also silk blends, faux silk (often called "Art Silk" or "artificial silk"), mercerized cotton and olefin.

  • If a rug has signs of wear but still looks vibrant, this is an indication that it is a genuine antique.

  • For insurance purposes, you should always obtain a certificate of authenticity from the dealer. This document should include the size, origin, age, style, materials, knot density, condition and estimated retail value of the carpet.

  • An authentic antique will not have a brand name associated with it, nor will it be hand-tufted.

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