About the Antique Rugs of the Future Project

Sheep Breeds of Azerbaijan

Sorting, Washing, Carding, Spinning

"The advantages of handspun yarn to machine spun yarn"

Rediscovery of Ancient Natural Dyes
Our Natural Dyestuffs


Difference between synthetically and naturally dyed rugs

Weaving and Finishing Steps

Galleries of ARFP Caucasian Azerbaijani Rugs


North West Anatolian rugs & kilims from Balikesir Province



Chuval, Face Only
Northwestern Anatolia

This is the decorated face of a storage sack (chuval). The complete bag would have had a plain or striped flatweave back, with the front and back panels sewn together along the two long sides, leaving one end open. This format is common to the sacks of northwest Anatolia, as evidenced by illustrations published by Pinkwart and Steiner of sacks with the decorative motif seen here that are attributed to the area between Bergama and Balikesir. However their discussions suggest that the plain weave sections between the decorated bands are usually undecorated multicolor stripes that are generally red and dark blue. By contrast, the plain weave sections in this chuval are each a single color – medium red, dark blue, and maroon – and each is decorated with jijim work. So it is possible that this sack comes from farther to the east, where the Turkmen peoples who ended up on the west coast of Anatolia left behind tribal members as they migrated across Anatolia over the centuries. Indeed, the maroon color is reminiscent of a shade often seen in weavings in the Turkish southeast.

The use of cotton for the white figures in the decorated bands provides a strong visual contrast with the dark blue wool ground.


1) Pinkwart, D. & Steiner, E., Bergama çuvallari, Wesel, 1991, pl. 11d, 11f, 30c, 30g

Structural Data:

Size: 4’ 3” x 2’ 6” (130 x 76 cm.)
Warp: Ivory wool, Z2S

Brocade Section
Weft: Purplish brown wool, Z singles; one per row
Patterning: Wool, Z singles; cochineal wool, Z2S; white cotton Z2S; 2/2 interlacing; 20 vertical rows to the inch, bordered by weft substitution weave stripes of brown and ivory wool, Z2S.

Flatweave Section

Weft-faced plain weave, Z singles, 56 per vertical inch, decorated with star shaped and flower form brocading of Z singles.

Selvages: Plain interlaced, two sets of paired warps

Ends: Missing

Note: This piece presents us with interesting information. The cochineal wool is spun differently from the rest of the wool, suggesting that this was procured from a different source, already spun and dyed.

Link: http://www.ne-rugsociety.org/gallery/bags/bags-navframe.htm