When looking for the best place in your home to put a valuable Oriental rug, most people will give first preference to a space that receives the least traffic. Other criteria most people look for is an area that is least likely to experience liquid spills or other types of debris. What very few rug owners give any thought to is how much sunlight that area receives. The fact is, sun fading is one of the most detrimental factors for Oriental rugs.
What Is Sun Fading?
We’ve all seen the effect of sunlight on colored fabrics. Direct sunlight fades colors after a while, leaving them looking pale and colorless. The more sunlight the area gets, the faster the colors will fade.
Organic fabric and colors are more susceptible to fading when exposed to the sun. Oriental rugs are made from all-natural materials. They may be made using any one or a combination of these fibers – wool, cotton and silk. Before being woven into rugs, these fibers are dyed using all-natural dyes extracted from the roots, stems and leaves of plants found naturally in the area. While their all-natural makeup is what makes Oriental rugs so valued around the world, it’s also what makes them more susceptible to fading from exposure to the sun.
When exposed to the sun, your vibrantly colored Oriental rug will start to look dull and patchy at some point. The extent of the fading and the time it takes to fade depends on the intensity of sunlight that area receives. The more sunlight the area gets, the faster the colors will fade. And only those areas of the rug exposed to the sun will fade away so the fading will look splotchy.
Is it Possible to Repair a Faded Oriental Rug and Restore it to Look New Again?
It is possible to repair some Oriental rugs that have been faded by the sun. Whether fading can be repaired or not depends on the amount of damage done to the rug fiber. If the structure of the fibers has sustained serious damage, say left to fade for years, it can lose the ability to hold on to dye. If the faded Oriental rug is left for a really long period of time it can be beyond repair.
So how do you prevent Oriental rug from fading in the first place?
• Rotate the Rug Regularly: Letting sunshine into the room is a healthy practice but as we know, it’s not so good for your rug. If the sun’s rays hit your rug partially, look for ways you can rotate your rug regularly. This will protect the rug from having one faded patch. There’s good news and bad news with this – your rug will fade evenly but it will eventually fade.
• Draw the Drapes: Drawing the drapes during peak sunlight hours will keep your rug better protected against the fading effect of the sun. When looking for drapes for this purpose, it’s important to look thick, opaque options that will block the sun’s rays.
• Use UV Film or Low Emission Glass For Your Windows: Using UV film or filter on your window panes will stop block the sun’s rays from entering the home and damaging your rug. This works very well and it’s not very expensive either. However, the one downside is that it can spoil the look of the room. If you don’t like the look of UV film or filter, consider replacing your regular window panes with low emission glass. Low emission glass offers the best protection against the damaging rays of the sun without compromising on the aesthetics of the room.
Are You Looking to Purchase a Hand-Knotted Persian or Oriental Rug?
If you are looking to purchase a high quality, hand-knotted Oriental and Persian rug(s) in the Metro DC area, look no further than J & J Oriental Rug Gallery. If you would like your rug professionally cleaned or repaired, we can do that too! If you are looking for an Oriental rug to complete the look of a room(s) in your home, please come visit our showroom. Remember, the right way to dress your floor is just a call away: 703-991-5486.