When we think of traditional Turkish crafts it’s hard not to imagine their famous rugs. The little village of Karacakilavuz has created its own touristic allure based solely around the production of their handmade rugs. It is also one of the oldest centres of textile-weaving in the country.
Modern times have brought faster and cheaper alternatives to hand-woven rugs, yet this has not deterred the townsfolk. They are steadfast in their knowledge that their handmade rugs are of a far superior quality, as well as being more unique, traditional and beautiful. The town today is keeping this traditional handcraft alive through their passion and determination.
Karacakilavuz has become famous for the distinctive variety of their carpet motifs, while at the same time safeguarding their weaving legacy. Like most traditions, the art of weaving remains a practice that is taught by the elders and learnt by the younger generation. While in the past there were many places outside the home to practice weaving, now handlooms have been regulated to a single room in the house.
The weaving is done using 100% cotton for the warp (lengthwise) of the rug, and 100% sheep’s wool for the weft is which is woven traverse. The style of this particular carpet is known as brocading, which means “a rich fabric woven with a raised pattern”. This was the favoured technique of tribal weavers in Anatolia, as it gives a more unique appearance and is believed to be one of the highest forms of carpet weaving.
Aside from the appealing aesthetic factor, it should be noted that carpets made from real wool are more hygienic and non-allergenic because it is a natural material and has no harmful gasses; while deterring the growth of bacteria and dustmites.
Although the process is not an easy one, the reward is an authentic Karacakilavuz rug, which is an exceptional piece of history, art and culture that will always be admired.