In a Kurdish town in the Northwest part of Iran the Bijar (or Bidjar) is woven. These exquisite rugs are best known for their durability over design. The Bijar design pattern is often copied by others but the craftsmanship and durability cannot be imitated. The mountains in this region have produced wool so durable that the Bijar rugs woven have become known as the “beast of burden.”
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The process of weaving a Bijar is very tiresome. The weaving process begins with wetting the wool, the wet wool is then extremely thin once soaked, thus allowing more room for weaving. When the carpets are taken off of the loom, oftentimes, they need straps (usually made of leather) sewn on the sides to make the carpet lay flat. A traditional Bijar will have red, blue, and a mostly earth tone hue. Even though most rugs are made with synthetic dyes today the weavers of Bijars are steeped in tradition and will only use vegetable dyes on the wool. Anyone who has ever had a true Persian Bijar knows that these rugs hold up under a lot of use. Two hundred years is the average life for this rug. These rugs have often adorned children’s playrooms and been handed down from generation to generation. War and strife has unsettled this peaceful region of Iran though no fault of the people of the region. Even though Bijars are not as abundant as they used to be we only hope that the peoples of the region continue their rich tradition.