Carpet weaving is a magnificent tradition of India. The Indian carpet industry is greatly owed to the Mughal Dynasty. They brought carpet weaving techniques from Persia to India. Mughal rugs were excellent in its enormous beauty and glory. Variety of materials like jute, bamboo, silk, yarn, cotton etc were used in manufacturing. Hand knotted Indian varieties were exceptionally gorgeous.
Indian carpet industry is scattered among different states. Each State has its own tradition and quality in the process of weaving. Chain stitch rugs, gabbe woolen and tufted woolen carpets are considered as famous in the international market. Ladakh, Darjeeling, West Bengal, Sikkim and Manipur are the largest manufactures of woolen carpets. The best grade Indian wool is used to made superior quality woolen rugs. Traditional weavers never use chemical dies for cleaning wools instead of that they are using natural ritha.
Since Indian carpets are using asymmetrical dense knots blended with outstanding beauty and quality, the old carpets also get superior resale values. Flowers, dragon, animal designs etc are different patterns found on these carpets. Typical Indian varieties are red in color with patterns of yellow, pink, blue, green, orange shades. Borders are made with dark colors matching with the inner color patterns. Amritsar, Agra (UP), Jaipur and Eluru and Warangal are the other good quality rugs producing regions.
A major portion of the carpet weavers are present at Mirzapur-Bhadohi belt in Uttar Pradesh. Out of India’s total manufacturing, 90% of production is done in this area. The quality can be judged on the basis of various factors like number of knots per unit area, the design and color, quality of yarn, firmness, thickness and appearance. India’s finest quality carpets are coming from Kashmir. Silk and wool are the major raw material used. An average piece from Kashmir includes 500 knots per square inches. Traditional paisley leaves and flowers are the major attractions of Kashmir carpets.
Rajasthan is one of the major carpets weaving location in the Indian region. Rajasthan carpets are rich in color with striking patterns. Even if it is mostly made from cotton yarn, hair of the Camel is also used for making carpets.
30000 people are working directly and indirectly in carpet weaving industries. Hand-woven antique carpets are priced in high rate. Export from India has reached to 800 million US dollars in the year 2006-07. United States is the major consumer of Indian carpets, followed by UK, Germany, Switzerland, Australia, Gulf countries, South Africa and Canada.