Definitive Guide to Rug Terminology

When vacationing in new country it can be stressful trying to communicate with locals and find your way around if you don’t speak the native tongue. Most people will try to learn a few key phrases, or maybe buy a pocket dictionary before their travels. When it comes to businesses though, most industries tend to have jargon they speak, and as a consumer it can be just as frustrating.

We believe that educating our clients is one of the best ways to ensure customers are happy with their decisions, and to help out, or as a little refresher, we pulled together a list of words you might hear in a carpet store, so you can feel a little more confident the next time you  come by.

The easiest way to describe the warp is that is it’s the vertical yarn. In some cases, it is visible (see flat weave). In most carpets though, the knots are tied to the warp.

The weft is the horizontally thread going over and under the warp. In a flat weave, it is what you see, and in any other kind of carpet, they keep the carpet together.


The hand of a carpet, just like the hand of a fabric, is the feel. The had can be soft, coarse, smooth, light, or many other things. It’s just a technical name for how the carpet feels and acts under touch.

Light side/Dark side:
Most rugs are woven on vertical looms, and where the weaving starts becomes the dark side of the carpets. This is because the fibers fall in one direction, so there is a smooth side and rough side to the carpet. Looking at the smooth side, colours will appear more subdue. We recommend that you look at wool and silk carpets from the soft side, because the silk will shine. Looking at the rough side, there is less reflected light, and colours will appear bolder.

The pile of the carpet is the thread that sticks up from the knots. Shaved carpets have little to no pile, while shag carpets have a long pile height.


Cut and Loop:
Loop and cut carpets combine threads that are looped with threads that stand straight. This can be used as a technique to create interesting textures and patterns. You can see an example below of Piece no. 27558, where the beige is a looped wool and the cut pile is plum bamboo.



Cut Pile:
A cut pile carpet is simply when the loops of pile that are created during the weaving process are cut. This is the majority of carpets that we carry at W Studio.

Over Dyed:
Over dyed is when an old carpet, or new carpet, is given new life by being re-dyed. Some of the original pattern may show through the new dye colour, but generally in an uneven fashion. This creates a fun and playful feel, as it can be done in very vivid colours.

Hand Knotted:
A hand knotted carpet is the traditional way of making carpets, and dates back thousands of years. The number of artisans weaving the carpet depends on the carpet width. This style of weaving can take months, and sometimes years, to finish.

Hand Tufted:
When a carpet is hand tufted, a person with a hand-held tufting gun to shoot yarns onto the backing, it takes less time to create a carpet using this method than it does to create a hand knotted carpet.


A high-low carpet infers that some of the carpet pile is higher than others, usually in the form of a pattern or a different colour. This can be done in tone on tone, with different fibers, or it can be very intricate.

26484-roll 72

Flat Weave:
Flat weave carpets are made by weaving together the warp and weft. There is less material used here than in a knotted carpet, but there can still be many patterns and interesting textures that can be made with a flat weave. Using the same size warp and weft can create a very uniform looking carpet, but varying the sizes can create something more playful. Below you can see a close up of a flat weave, Piece no. 27715.



Broadloom is a term for carpeting that runs wall to wall. There are many different styles, patterns and types of broadloom available.

Traditional or classic style carpets are carpets with patterns that are based off the old weaving look. They used to be used to tell a story of the artisans’ town, but can have many different styles and motifs within them. The patterns are generally balanced and have a border. Piece no. 16088 is a beautiful traditional carpet. 16088-top-Edit

Transitional carpets generally pull motifs from traditional/classic styles, but generally don’t have a border, or have a more heavily repeated pattern. Piece no. 27762 is a great example of a transitional carpet.


Contemporary carpets can feature graphics or can be abstract, and can even have a graphic pattern. This term is more a catch-all for carpet that don’t fit within the other two styles. Piece no. 27710 is an example of a contemporary carpet.


Some carpets have fringe at the ends of the carpet, which is generally an extension of the warp of the carpet. It can be cut short or even cut off in some cases depending on personal taste. Not all carpets have fringe. Piece no.  27794 had quite long fringe.


Knots per Square Inch:
Knots per square inch means exactly what it says, but it can imply a few different things about the carpet. Carpets with a higher knot count can have more intricate patterns, with a higher resolution.  A higher knot count takes more time to be woven, making them comparatively more expensive than carpets composed of the same type of material in the same size with a lower knot count.

On Loom:
When a carpet is on loom, it just means it is in the process of being woven. Before a carpet can be put on loom, the raw materials need to be gathered, dyed, and spun.


We hope that this has helped educate you a little more on the world of carpets! For a full educational experience, come in to 1330 Castlefield Ave, or call us to book an appointment at 416.929.9290.

Bold or Safe? How to choose a rug that fits your style

As sprig is a time for renovations, you may find yourself looking for a new rug. Or you may just be spring cleaning and decide it is time to switch up your space. One of the most important things to consider when choosing a new rug is what you want it to accomplish for the room. Your rug is usually on of the largest pieces of décor, so it has a pretty big impact on your room. We are here to walk you through choosing a piece accomplishes what you want and ties your space together.

The first thing that you have to consider is weather you want the carpet to be the focal point of your room or the backdrop. Weather you want to play it safe or go bold, take into account the other pieces in your room; the texture, colours, size, and weather or not there are any patterns to be aware of.

Now, once you have decided which direction you want to go with your carpet you have to consider how both the pattern and colour will go with the room. If you are looking to go bold with the carpet, choose a stand out colour or a bold pattern. If you are looking to play it safe with your carpet, go with a neutral colour, or choose a smaller scale pattern.

The next thing to keep in mind is the texture. If your room is full of glass and metal, you can use wool or a shag to go bold, but use silk or bamboo to create a safe look. Oh the other hand, if your room is filled with fairly matte textures, use silk to create a contrast and wool to play it safe. Playing around with the percentages of wool and silk can also create a difference in the outcome of the room as a whole and the price of the carpet.

No matter what look you are going for, the scale of the carpet is important to keep the room looking balanced. If you have high ceilings and a large room, going with a smaller carpet or pattern can make the carpet look out of place, or make it look like the space isn’t properly filled. If your room is on the smaller side, having a large patter or carpet could overwhelm the other elements of the décor.

No matter what the look you are going for, we are here to help. If you know what you are looking for send us your wish list and we will hand, select a number of options for you to view. If you don’t know where to start, call us or book an appointment to see us at the studio or have us do a complimentary house visit. If we don’t have exactly what you are looking for, we can source it or have it custom made for your space.

Follow this quiz below to see our recommendations on what you should look for!


bold or safe

W STUDIO Luxe Collection & Universal Line




Made from the durable fibres of bamboo, our bamboo silk lines of hand-knotted carpets can be both casual and elegant to the eye, but luxurious to the touch. These carpets have been extremely popular and it’s easy to see why: the colours are deep & rich but truly come to life when seen as a whole piece on the floor. No image can truly provide the depth and variation of colour as much as seeing (and touching) them in person. To see them for yourself and to learn more about bamboo silk, please stop by the W STUDIO main showroom at Designers Walk Bldg Nº5 in Toronto or by visit us online at:


For Fuschia’s Sake: Pantone Reveals Colour of the Year

It’s that time of the year again.  Pantone reveals their pick for Colour of The Year. This year, the winner is Radiant Orchid! Pantone describes it as:

“An enchanting harmony of fuchsia, purple and pink undertones, Radiant Orchid inspires confidence and emanates great joy, love and health. It is a captivating purple, one that draws you in with its beguiling charm.

Pantone Colour of The Year: Radiant Orchid


We have a couple of pieces that not only futures, but also fuse well with this year’s winner.





This year at IIDEX Canada, W STUDIO walked away with another Gold IIDEX Innovation Award (for a second year in a row, no less). We are excited to be producing pieces which not only boast striking designs & fantastic colours but are also recognized as unique and innovative hand-made works-of-art. We look forward to making it a three-peat next year;)



Once again, our favourite piece poll was a roaring success. This time, only 6 votes separated 1st & 2nd place. Stay tuned for our announcement of the poll results as well as our prize winner who will be taking home an exclusive 4’x6′ 100-knot Tibetan wool W STUDIO carpet.




As well, a special thank you to Bang & Olufsen for supplying us with their A9 speaker adding the element of sound to our booth this year.

Finally, a big thank you to our W STUDIO IIDEX13 Team who made our booth such an overwhelming success.