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



Reconstruction of the Berlin Museum early 16th century small pattern Holbein rug
Size (metric): 152x206cm
Size (ft): 5'0"x7'0"
Area: 3.13 m2
Pile height: 0.5cm
Ends: single knots
Weaving period: four months

Colors: madder red, dark navy blue, yellow, aqua blue, light brown/hazelnut, medium green, maroon, ivory, dark brown.
Dyes: 100% natural dyes: madder, weld (Reseda Luteola), indigo, pomegranate skins, walnut husks, natural brown sheep wool, natural ivory sheep wool

Materials: wool on wool: handspun wool for pile, ivory wool warps and tan wefts

Weavers: Ilaha, Elnara

Inscriptions: tamga (tribal seal) of Afshar tribe

Design: Named after a famous portrait by Hans Holbein the Younger that depicts a similar carpet draped over a table, the pattern of this carpet is one of the most fundamental of all carpet designs. Many other carpet patterns are derived from its arrangement of small knotlike medallions and diamond-shaped strapwork. Its interlaced border is related to the kufic border found in many early 'Lotto' carpets. "Holbein" carpets were woven in Anatolia as early as the fourteenth century, and became popular in Europe from the fifteenth century onward.


"The Ambassadors- Jean de Dinteville and Georges de Selve", by Hans Holbein the Younger, 1533, depicts an early Turkish large pattern Holbein rug with
the reciprocal trefoil border of the same type.

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A small pattern Holbein rug is depicted in Tommaso di Piero's 'The Sacred Conversation', 1490-1500

"A Family Group", 1524, by Bernardino Licinio (c.1490-1549) shows a small pattern Holbein rug



Edward VI (the King of England and Ireland between 1547 1553, standing on a green ground small pattern Holbein carpet. c.1547 by an unknown artist



"Madonna and Child Enthroned between Angels and Saints", c. 1486, Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence. by Domenico Ghirlandaio - shows a so called small pattern "Holbein" rug



"Laura Pisani", Circle of Dosso Dossi. Italian, Ferrara, about 1525.



" Madonna and Child Enthroned with Saints", ca. 1490s , unknown painter. Location: Chiese di Gravedona, Como.(fresco)



"Annunciazione", c 1505, by Andrea Previtali ("Holbein" carpet in the background)


San Zeno Polyptych, 1457-60. by Andrea Mantegna. San Zeno, Verona. This is one of the earliest paintings depicting a small pattern Holbein rug.

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For more information about the above rug or to place an order please email vd@azerbaijanrugs.com (Baku, Azerbaijan) or ra@azerbaijanrugs.com  (San Francisco Bay Area). We will get back to you within 24 hours or less.