Egyptian kilims, also called kelims, carpets are hand-woven. Each kilim is only one copy. Because of their high decorative value, they are not only used as a floor covering, as well as wall decoration. Egyptian kilims mainly differ from other carpets and rugs because they are not knotted but woven. As a result, they do not have a pole. Also, there is no clear front or back side. On both sides is the colored pattern to full advantage.
Origin of the kilim
Kilims are hand-woven from natural materials such as cotton, wool or hair of a camel, goat or horse. These materials are strong enough for normal use, but in the end they did not escape the ravages of time. There are therefore almost no kilims that are over a hundred years. However, there are reasons to believe that the technique for making kelims have long been known. Thus, there is an Egyptian vase from 6000 years when a loom is shown that kilims were made. Another clue is formed by the motives which process some peoples from generation to generation in kilims, mostly symbols connected to the family or clan identity. The Luri and Baktiari from Southwest Persia for example, use a two-headed animal motif in that region already occurred during prehistory. The exact origin is untraceable. We do know that kilims are made by a lot of peoples, especially by Buddhists, Muslims and Christians.
Oriental hand-woven wool carpets with the so typical drawings of their region of origin. Kilims are woven in many Arab countries. Each country will have its traditions in the form of design and drawings. The Egyptian kilims often have an abstract drawing reminiscent of ancient hieroglyphs. Each rug is unique and made of heavy wool quality.
Uses of kilims
In spite of the use of simple materials, the quality of the fabric is very high, since each wire is individually manually tightened. Traditionally kilims are also used to protect humans and animals (horses, camels) against heat, cold, snow and rain. But also kilims with their beautiful decorations often used as prayer rugs. In Western households, they are popular as rugs and wall decorations, often in combination with matching, beautifully printed cushions. There are even people who collect kilims, purely because they are so nice (and affordable).