Antique small baluch rug, beautiful apricot-ground meander border with blossoms and tree pattern enclosing a simple endless repeat field featurung apricot and maroon-colouted hooked diamonds. The border design is hold together by a generous and angular meandering vine pattern. Tree motives with three white blossoms branch into halved hooked trees that frame a dark blue angular hooked motive.
Whether the hooks in the border's motives go back to floral forms or represent animal heads, as James Opie might claim (see his book "Tribal rugs") I am not sure. In contrat, the field is very simple, showing a hexagonal endless repeat grid on dark blue ground filled with apricot- and maroon-coloured hooked diamonds.
The rug measures 4ft.6in x 2ft.6in (172cm x 91cm). The structure is all wool, the handle is firm and leather-like. The shape is regular and it lies flat on the floor. The weave is tight and even, no warp depression, asymmetrical knots open to the left, 8 knots/inch horizontal x 10 knots per inch vertical (ca. 80 kpsi). Warps consist of strands of white z-spun wool s-plied together. Wefts are two shots of single strand greenish-brown wool. The pile is dense and relatively short. The brown which is used in the central fillings of the hooked diamonds in the field and for outlining and hooked branches/animal heads in the main border, is corroded, giving a relief effect.
The selvages are braided and look atypical for Baluch, maybe the goat hair brading that seems tied in small intervals around the one remaining selvage cord (wrapped in greenish brown wool) is the result of an old repair. At both ends, about an inch of the original diagonally segmented slit tapestry kilim (sharing warps where the colours meet) remain.
In patches all over the back, the piece shows dry and fortunately thin remnants of some old yellowish glue (see image of back). In these areas, the handle is somewhat stiffer, though not hard. The gue traces do not detract from the beauty of the front, however.
Only few colours are used. The nice abrashed apricot of the wide main border dominates. It is also used in the hooked diamonds. I has slight tip fading, and while the colour is pleasant and variegated, I am not sure regarding thedyestuff used. The other half of the diamonds and the meandering vine of the main border use a maroon verging on aubergine that may be madder-based. Then there is a medium slightly greenish walnut brown used for outlining in the borders, which is somewhat corroded. The field colour is a dark indigo, also used in the motives of the border. Finally, off-white is used sparingly in the simple secondary borders and for the blossoms.
Leaving aside the glue traces on the back (see image), the condition is quite good. The rug has a dense short pile with very light wear, slightly stronger in the centre. The corroded brown often seen in antique Baluch rugs is down to the knotheads with occasional specs of foundation visible.
In one area on the bottom right side, the selvage is loose (split from rug) for a few inches. The kilm ends are mostly secured but with some unravelling of the securing thread at the top. There is corner rounding (secured) at the bottom right corner.
I can see no repairs other than the old work on th eselvages. No holes, slits, or tears, no bleeding, no repiling. The kilim ends should perhaps be secured to prevent unravelling.The rug is reasonably clean (though not washed recently) and has no unpleasant odour.