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For many applications the carpet style you select is a matter of preference, but you may want to familiarize yourself with the many options available to you. Of course, our salespeople will be happy to guide you as well, so don’t hesitate to come in to find your favorites!

Wilton

A woven-backed carpet containing up to five colors, Wiltons have the temporarily unused color strands woven into the backing for extra thickness and strength. They are exquisitely patterned very high quality carpets, usually made of wool. Some have patterned textures, made by using a combination of loops and cut pile, or different pile heights of yarn to give the pile a carved or sculptured look.

Wiltons have a needlepoint texture and often have optional borders. They can have up to 6 colors.

Axminster

Axminster is a time-honored method of weaving cut pile carpet, in which the backing and pile yard are woven together. Up to 35 colors can be used, making axminsters ideal for inticately patterned carpets. Axminsters are usually made of wool, a material which absorbs a full range of dye colors extremely well. These durable carpets are an excellent choice for heavily-trafficked areas and stairs.

Axminsters often have floral designs but can also be geometric or oriental patterns.

Tufted

A comparatively new invention, tufted carpet is simpler to produce than the Axminster or Wilton type carpets. Individual lengths of yarn are inserted into a pre-woven backing cloth, creating either a looped or cut pile texture. The backing is then coated with latex to keep the tufts in place, and a second backing is added for extra strength. Tufted carpets are the most affordable carpets with greatest range of patterns and textures. The majority of carpets made today are tufted.

Finishing Styles

The depth, surface feel and look of a carpet is determined by its finishing. These are the most popular types.

Loop Pile

The yarn is continuously "looped", giving all sorts of textures from thick and nubby to closely curled. Loop Pile is used mainly in Wilton or Tufted carpets. Loop Pile carpets generally wear better than cut piles and are often an ideal choice for high use areas such as halls and stairways.

Loop Pile
Loop Pile
Loop Pile

Cut Pile

The top of each yarn loop is cut to a uniform length, achieving a fine, soft and luxurious feel underfoot.

Plush carpet, a type of cut pile, has been the most popular carpet style in this country for many years. It is usually a solid-color carpet whose pile is sheared to an even pile height. Plush carpets will show footprints and vacuum marks. If this is undesirable, you may want to choose a velvet, whose pile is shorter and less apt to show signs of use.

Velvets, sometimes referred to as "velours", are a rich, velvety looking close-cut pile, usually in a solid color. Velvets look particularly smooth and soft in pure new wool.

Plush Cut Pile
Velvet Cut Pile
"Cut & Loop" - a combination of both

Textured Plush

This plush carpet style often has more than one color of yarn and has varying tuft heights, effectively reducing footprint and vacuum marks.

Sculptured

Sculptured carpet has both looped and cut tufts which are used together to create patterns, even without variation in color.

Sculptured (both cut and loop pile)
Saxony
Frieze

Saxony Pile

A long, dense, shaggy cut pile with heat-set plied strands with well defined individual tuft tips, Saxony pile carpet has a textured look. Keep in mind that long-pile carpets will compress with wear, so Saxonies should be reserved for low to moderate traffic areas such as living rooms. Generally, they are not appropriate for heavy use areas such as halls.

Frieze (or Hard-Twist) Pile

Designed to feel and look good but still wear very well, hard-twist is a cut pile which has a heavy (or hard) twist or kink built into the yarn. Its pebbly look tends to show shading marks less than velvet pile carpet. Hard twist is usually found in solid colors, but it can be combined with other types to create a two-toned, textured effect.

Berber

Originally, Berber carpets were traditional handweavings of Berber North African tribes people who handspun yarns made from the undyed wool of their sheep. ‘Berber’ is now used to refer to carpet having the same home-spun look, with natural-looking variation in wool color and large-scale nubby texture. The tufts are looped and aligned in rows for a clean, uniform look. When choosing a berber, select one with smaller loops to get the best wear, and keep in mind that they may not be the longest-wearing choice for households with children or pets.

Berber with enlarged inset to show texture

Commercial Carpets

Commercial carpets are generally used where there is very heavy traffic. Commercial Level loop has small loops and Commercial Cut Pile is a short napped plush type of carpet. Commercial carpets are generally not as soft underfoot as those intended for residential use.

Carpet Fibers

Wool

Wool is an ideal floor covering material. It is comfortable, resilient and soil resistant. Wool is a protein fiber with a thin outer water-repellent coating that resists the absorption of water. This is why a wool carpet allows liquid spills to bead up on its surface. The scale-like configuration of wool fibers also keep soil from penetrating to the foundation of the carpet and make it easy to clean. Wool also naturally possesses a crimp, which makes it springy and resilient, enabling a wool rug to resist crushing from the weight of furniture and foot traffic. Woolen yarns, because of the structure of their fiber, trap air, making wool rugs great insulators of heat and sound. Wool is also naturally fire retardant. For these many reasons, wool in an ideal carpet fiber ensuring quality, durability, safety, comfort, and long-lasting beauty.

Sisal

Sisal is a strong, stable and versatile material that can be woven into boucles and rib weaves, flat weaves, and jacquard patterns and many dyed colors. It can be a little rough underfoot, but less so when combined with other fibers such as wool. Sisal carpets are naturally sound-absorbing, anti-static, and extremely durable because of the inherent qualities of this tough, hard-wearing fiber. It is also naturally insulating and difficult to ignite. Like most plant fibers, however, sisal absorbs moisture readily, therefore we recommend that these materials be used only indoors, in dry areas of a home or office.

Sisal with a tapestry border

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