Rug Making: Hand vs Machine

Persian  Rugs

Learning the contrast between rug materials is necessary, though, understanding how the rug is created makes all the difference. In this article, you will learn about the different types of rugs and various rug construction techniques. That is, understanding the various rug textures, rug process and quality, and overall rug longevity.


Hand-knotted rugs are among the finest and most detailed form of rugs you can find. As the name would suggest, the process is traditionally executed by hand, using a loom and a meticulous knotting technique.

Hand-knotted rugs typically come in four styles of knots; Turkish, Persian, Persian Jufti, and Turkish Jufti. A trained eye helps in discovering which type you have. The density of the knots is often an indicator of the quality of the rugs, so pay attention to the knot count!

Typically made from bamboo silk, wool or a mixture of the two; these rugs are expensive as it is labour-intensive, though a great purchase as it holds value for years.

Price from: £700+

Indoor Viscose Rayon Area Runner Rug Material Shabby Chic Blue Grey LCN06 DUSK Hand Knotted
LCN06 DUSK – Hand Knotted Rayon Rug
Indoor Wool Area Rug Material Mid Century Modern Minimalist Scandi Beige Cream Grey OCS01 Hand-knotted
OCS01 SHELL – Hand Knotted Wool Rug
Browse Hand-knotted Rugs


Hand-loomed rugs are becoming quite the popular rug style for those on a budget. Made on looms similar to fabric looms; it is faster to create more than its sophisticated counterpart, ie hand-knotted rugs.

Hand-loomed rugs are produced in a short-time and constructed on more robust materials, such as polyester, rayon or a combination of natural and synthetic materials.

Be careful with these types of rugs, as despite its construction, hand-loomed rugs are quite delicate and if placed in high traffic areas may begin to exhibit signs of wear and damage quite quickly. Hence, these rugs would be more suitable for spaces in the home with the least foot traffic.

Price from: £100+

Indoor Natural Wool Area Rug Material Modern Chic Decor Brown Beige Mauve MAY105 Hand Loomed
MAY105 GREY – Hand Loomed Wool Rug
Indoor Viscose Rayon Luxcelle Area Rug Material Modern Chic Decor Dark Grey Black CK36 GDT04 BASAL Hand Loomed
CK36 GDT04 BASAL – Hand Loomed Luxcelle Rug
Browse Hand-loomed Rugs


Hand-tufted rugs are created considerably different despite having ‘hand’ in the name and having similar designs to the hand-knotted rugs. Stretched over a frame; hand-tufted rugs are produced by punching strands of wool into a canvas. The process is quick, which means that the difference in price is considerable in comparison. Most hand-tufted rugs will usually be finished by adding a scrim fabric to the back and have tassels and knots glued on to the edge to create the hand-knotted effect.

Made mostly from wool, they are blemish and damage resistant.

But only to a point. These type of rugs are durable and excellent in high foot traffic areas of the home. However, they will still require cleaning and maintenance to keep them looking their best.

Price from: £90+

Indoor Polyester Area Cosy Hygge Modern Beige Grey Silver Yellow Gold SMM05 GREY/YELLOW Hand Tufted
SMM05 GREY/YELLOW – Hand Tufted Polyester Rug

INSTAGRAM: @elegancerugs

Browse Hand-tufted Rugs


Handmade rugs tend to follow a more modern construction process but in keeping with traditional styles and techniques. These are not to be confused with hand-tufted rugs though, as they are built in an entirely different style altogether.

These rugs tend to be slightly more expensive than some in this category, but with good reason. Made with more natural fibres and, as the name suggests, are made by hand.

Handmade rugs are commonly handwoven in flat weave technique, ie the rug is woven flat with a slight height. This time-consuming technique requires great skill, so naturally, the price will increase and reflects the rug value overall.

Often, these rugs are dense and provide only limited support on a cold floor, hence placing a rug pad underneath will further keep it in place and increased comfort.

Price from: £200+

INSTAGRAM: @elegancerugs

Indoor Polyester Area Modern Chic Minimalist Blue Navy Teal CK810 DENIM Handmade
CK810 DENIM – Handmade Polyester Rug
Browse Hand Made Rugs


Handwoven rugs, as the name would suggest, are handwoven. Unlike some of its more detailed and intricate counterparts, ie hand-knotted rugs, these are created quite quickly using more modern weaving styles that come in a variety of colours, textures, styles and designs. From geometric to more plain styles, the beauty of buying one of these rugs is that you will be sure to find one that is perfect for your living space.

Usually made from natural materials, such as wool; this gives them a hardy appearance and structure, but also means that they have a natural resistance to stains and damage.

Price from: £90+

Indoor Natural Polyester Area Shabby Modern Luxury Decor Organic Modern OM002 OCEAN Handwoven
OM002 OCEAN – Handwoven Polyester Rug


Indoor Viscose Area Rug Material Minimalist Mid Century Modern Grey Silver Taupe Cream CK990 CALVIN KLEIN Handwoven
CK990 SILVER GREY – Handwoven Viscose Rug
Browse Hand Woven Rugs


Machine-made rugs as the name suggests are often industrially created using artificial rug material such as polypropylene and polyester.

Processed using computer programmed rug designs; it is exceptionally fast to construct as the fibres are more durable and malleable. These rugs are often considerably cheaper than its alternative options of rugs, notably the hand-knotted rugs.

The rug technique process and materials used are the polar opposite of these. The durability of a machine-made rug will average around 20 years, but this can vary depending on the type of fibre used in production. Often, brands have a steady following due to their rug’s eye-catching and elaborate designs. Though, these rugs are considered as a short term decorative piece and not as a collector’s item.

Price from: £20+

Indoor Multicoloured Area Boho Chic Eccentric Maximalist Scandi Pink Blue Teal Duck Egg PSN16 GYMTC Machine-made
PSN16 GYMTC – Machine Made Polypropylene Rug
Browse Machine Made Rugs


Power-loomed rugs are undoubtedly modernistic way rug construction today, that is, they are often very affordable and give the impression of a much more expensive item. Made similar to machine-made rugs; the materials used in power-loomed rugs are usually those of jute, wool and polypropylene. These rugs are weaved using three different styles, ie Wilton, Cross-even Wilton, and the Axminster, and produced in varying heights and piles.

Extremely fast to manufacture and can be designed to look like their handmade counterparts. As a result, this style of rug is a fabulous addition to any family home and will provide years of aesthetic pleasure.

Price from: £30+

Indoor Polyester Area Mid Century Modern Minimalist CK950 IVORY BLUE Power Loomed
CK950 IVORY BLUE – Power Loomed Polyester Rug
Indoor Natural Wool Runner Rug Material Traditional Classic English Decor Ivory Beige Black Green LI04 IVBLK Power-loomed
LI04 IVBLK – Power Loomed New Zealand Wool Rug
Browse Power Loomed Rugs

Still unsure of which rug to get?

Check out this fool-proof guide



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