How to Identify Navajo Rugs Side Cords
Authentic Navajo rugs can be easily identified by the side selvage cords that run along the sides. If the rug does not have these cords, it is probably not made by the Navajo tribe. Other characteristics of authentic Navajo rugs include no fringe, vegetal dyes, and side selvage cords. Here are some of the most common signs to watch for:
Authentic Navajo rugs
Authentic Navajo rugs have a warp and side cords that run the length of the rug. The loops are attached to the bottom and top of the loom. Fake rugs usually have fewer or no warp cords and are not authentic. In order to tell if a rug is genuine, look for side cords or tight weaves. Genuine rugs have at least 50 wefts per inch, whereas fake rugs have less than this number.
In addition to the side cords, authentic Navajo rugs have a spirit line. It extends along the border from the center of the rug and is the same color as the center. However, not all authentic rugs have spirit lines. It’s also important to keep in mind that cheap rugs often lack these features. If you find a rug that looks expensive and is large, it may not be a genuine Navajo rug.
Authentic Navajo rugs have side selvage cords
Authentic Navajo rugs are often distinguishable by the presence of side selvage cords, or twisting threads, on the edges. These lines assist the Navajo weaver in keeping a straight line as he or she makes the rug. Authentic rugs can be easily identified by their presence on the surface, but online images will require a closer inspection.
The side cords on an authentic Navajo rug make it easy to spot a Navajo from a fake. The cords are visible against the dark background and will give the rug its identity. This is also one of the main reasons why authentic Navajo rugs are distinguished by side cords. These cords are the most noticeable part of a genuine Navajo rug.
Authentic Navajo rugs have no fringe
A key distinguishing characteristic of an authentic Navajo rug is the absence of fringe. This is because authentic rugs have no fringes, while fake ones often have fringes woven back into the rug’s edges. Besides the absence of fringe, authentic rugs are made with double-yarn construction, which means they have fewer strands. In addition, authentic rugs are usually more durable than imitations, as they are woven by hand.
Genuine rugs are made of wool, and fakes use polyester or acrylic. The warp threads in genuine rugs are attached to the ends of the loom, while fakes have fringes on both sides. Also, authentic rugs have smaller borders on the ends than fakes. The end borders of a genuine Navajo rug are often smaller than those of fake rugs, which is another way to identify its authenticity.
Authentic Navajo rugs have vegetal dyes
Traditional Navajo rugs have vegetable dyes. These natural dyes are extracted from plants native to the reservation and mixed with mordants to produce beautiful colors. Because wool tends to be more expensive than synthetically dyed rugs, the traditional method of vegetal dyeing is best for rugs made of wool. However, aniline dyes are becoming more popular, and Navajo weavers began using them around 1870.
Authentic Navajo rugs are usually hand-woven by a Navajo woman. Compared to a Mexican serape, a Navajo rug does not have fringes. The fringes are actually exposed warp threads. Authentic Navajo rugs have three periods: traditional, transitional, and contemporary. In addition to their appearance, they differ in quality and design.